Killer review of A PERFECT MACHINE by Corey Redekop!

Yeah, this one made my whole damn week:

Here’s a snippet:

‘While on its surface A Perfect Machine would appear to fit comfortably within the genre niche of “science fiction thriller”, it quickly proves itself to have a lot more on its mind. Savory isn’t afraid to push his story away from its more straightforward Running Man underpinnings and into the mind-melting strangeness inherent of the writings of Stanislaw Lem, Theodore Sturgeon, Samuel R. Delany, and Arkady and Boris Strugatsky. If I may attempt to translate the novel into more cinematic terms (an apt tactic, I believe, considering the vastly cinematic nature of the narrative), the tale of Kyllo’s transformation is Philip K. Dick by way of David Lynch and Alejandro Jodorowsky, with a side trip into the body horrors of David Cronenberg’s Videodrome, H. R. Giger’s biomechanical artwork, and the gruesome Japanese cyberpunk film Tetsuo: The Iron Man.’


“Sucked to Death”

Robot death #5! This one for Greg Herren.


“I had a friend who once stuck his doinker in a Roomba,” Chip said, raking leaves with his friend and business partner, Greg. They owned a gardening company together.

“Ha. Good one. A friend,” Greg replied, using air quotes for the word friend.

“No, honestly, not me. Buddy of mine. Don’t think you know him. Steve Jenkinson.”

“That name sounds super-made-up.”

“Your face sounds super-made-up,” Chip said, and smiled wide.

“How can my face sound like anything? That doesn’t even make sense.”

“You face doesn’t even make—”

“Ugh,” Greg grunted, cutting Chip off.

“Come on, seriously, you think I’d stick my doinker in a Roomba? You think I’m that dumb?” Chip asked, stuffing a handful of leaves into a yard bag.

“Well, let’s see. You’re dumb enough to trot out ‘Steve Jenkinson’ as a name to cover up for the fact that you stuck your cock in a Roomba, so yeah, I’m gonna go ahead and say you’re that dumb,” said Greg.

“Oh, like ‘Greg Herren’ is such a real-sounding name.”

Greg just stared at his friend for a while, aghast at his idiocy. Then he said: “Anyway, tell me about the time you stuck your cock in a Roomba.”

Chip sighed. “Forget it.”

The next day, finishing up the same lawn:

“Have you heard about iRobot’s new Roomba model?” Chip asked.

“Is this another non-story about your friend ‘Steve’ getting a Roomba blowy?” Greg replied.

“No. And shut up. I do have a friend name Steve Jenkinson.”

“Okay, but imaginary friends don’t count. You know that, right?”

“Haha. Whatever. Listen, this is serious. iRobot’s new Roomba is a joint venture with Dyson so they could get maximum sucking power. It’s a full-size man or woman of your choice. You can make it look like anyone you want. And it vacuums your fucking house. So rad.”

Greg propped his rake against a tree. “Say what now?” He wiped sweat from his brow, and sat down with his back against the tree.

“Hey, it’s not break time,” Chip said, playfully whacking Greg with his rake.

“Yes, it is. I can’t very well be expected to rake leaves and listen to your ridiculous bullshit.”

Chip leaned his own rake next to Greg’s, pulled out his smartphone, tapped it a bunch of times, swiped here and there, then turned the screen toward Greg, and leaned down. “Look, fuck-knuckle. The new Roomba/Dyson hybrid.”

Greg sighed and took the phone from Chip’s hand. His eyes widened considerably. “Jesus H.”

“See? Told ya, dingus.”

The image on the screen was of a very attractive man holding a vacuum—rather, the vacuum was one of its arms, seamlessly blending from a hand into a pipe, broadening out to become a vacuum head when it reached the floor.

“Creepy, but . . . yeah, dude is super-hot. No argument there,” Greg said, passed the phone back to Chip. “You gonna name yours Steve Jenkinson?”

Chip kicked Greg in the feet. “Shut it, filth.”

“Seriously, though, are you gonna get one?”

“They’re way too expensive for me.”

“What if I bought you one?”

“Whoa, you’d do that?” Chip asked, suddenly very excited.

“Sure, why not? I have some extra dough socked away, and I still owe you some for the extra you’ve put into the business. And hey, you’re my buddy, and it makes me sad that no one wants to blow you.”

Chip kicked Greg’s feet again, this time much harder.

“Hey, easy! Save that energy for your new boyfriend,” Greg said, standing back up, and brushing himself off.

They raked up the rest of the leaves, and put the yard bags at the end of the customer’s driveway for pick-up. He wouldn’t tell Chip but, truth be told, Greg was pretty excited to see what this sexy vacuuming robot was all about.

When it arrived four days later, Greg was at Chip’s house playing video games with him.

The doorbell rang, and Chip nearly knocked everything off his coffee table leaping for the door.

“Christ! Take it easy!” Greg yelled after him. “You really do have toxic sperm build-up, don’t you?”

Chip ignored him, whipped open the door, flirted with the FedEx guy while he signed for the massive box sitting on his porch.

“Hey,” Chip yelled into the living room, “help me get this monster into the house!”

They hauled it in, unpacked it, put it together, and now stood appreciating it in the living room.

“It has a very nice penis,” Chip said.

“Yes. Yes, it does,” Greg agreed.

“Want to turn it on, see if it works?”

“Should we put some clothes on it first?”

Chip considered this for a moment. “Why bother?”

“Just less creepy is all. He’s very creepy right now, don’t you think? His dong just hanging out like that.”

“No, I like it. No clothes for him. That’s settled,” Chip said and grinned at Greg.

“Fine, have it your way.”

Chip leaned forward and flicked the on switch.

The moment it came to life, it dropped to its knees and started sucking at the air with its mouth. It raised its hands like it was cupping a shaft and balls.

“Jesus!” Greg said. “Are there different settings? It must be set to SexBot or something. Turn it off. That’s disturbing as hell.”

“Says the guy who has no trouble getting blown,” Chip said.

“Well, if you’re leaving it like that, I’m outta here.”

Greg headed for the door, a shiver winding its way up his spine. Something about the thing’s eyes . . . Christ. Horrifying.

Behind him, the robot stood up. “Where are you going, friend?” it asked.

Greg froze, turned around slowly, tried not to look directly into the thing’s eyes.

“You bought me to clean Chip’s house and give you blowjobs,” it said.

“Good lord,” Greg muttered under his breath. “I’m not your fucking friend, you weird-ass machine. Now back off.”

It dropped to its knees and started sucking the air again. “Give me your cock, friend. Give it to me. Give it to me. RIGHT NOW.” On the last two words, its voice dropped several octaves. “GET IT IN ME. GET IT IN ME RIGHT NOW.”

The slurping sounds were horrendous. Greg involuntarily backed up till he slammed against the door. The hand motions were harsher now. Greg imagined his dick in those hands being pummelled and crushed.

“Turn it off, Chip. Jesus! Something’s obviously wrong with it. Turn the goddamn thing off!”

Chip moved forward, tried flicking the off/on switch, but nothing happened. It stood up again, starting moving toward Greg, sucking the air, slurping sloppily, drool now running from the corners of its mouth.

“It won’t shut off, Greg. Fuck! What do I do?”

“Kick it! Punch it! Do something!”

Chip tried pushing it over, tried punching it, but it didn’t stop, didn’t even waver.

Then it was right in front of Greg, who stood paralyzed by fear. His hand reached behind him, scrambling blindly for the doorknob, but the robot’s hand pulled Greg’s away from the knob, moved it down to its engorged penis.

“STROKE ME,” it said in its nasty, guttural voice. Then it dropped to its knees for a third time, and its voice changed to an insistent whisper. “LOVE ME, LOVE ME.”

Greg screamed as the robot pulled his pants down hard, jammed Greg’s cock in its mouth. It sucked and sucked, its Dyson motor revving up to full power. Its eyes rolled back in its head.


That’s when Greg lost consciousness.

Right before his cock was ripped off entirely by the force of the vacuum engine, he heard Chip very far away, saying, “But . . . it was supposed to be my robot. No fair. It was supposed to be mine.”

Chip called 911, but Greg bled to death on Chip’s floor before the ambulance could arrive.

The next day, Chip returned the robot for a full refund, and ordered a regular Roomba instead. He used the extra refunded money to pay for Greg’s funeral.

And a blowy from his friend Steve Jenkinson.

“The Universe Understands”

Finished my fourth robot-death story yesterday, “The Universe Understands,” for Ali Magnum.




The pensioner didn’t know what hit him.

One minute, he was just waiting at the bus stop, the next, he had a knife embedded hilt-deep in his ribs. He fell over, gasping for air. Ali Magnum kicked him twice in the face.

“Goddamn, you’re old,” she said.

He gurgled, then passed out from loss of blood.

A good citizen across the street called 911.

Ali fled the scene.

“I knifed a pensioner today,” Ali said over breakfast the next day.

“Oh, yeah? Who was it? Anyone you know?” the man across from her at the table said.

“Nah, just some old, used-up fuck,” Ali said and sneered around her mouthful of Honey Nut Cheerios.

“You do know you’re a horrible person who’s going to one day meet a disastrous end, don’t you? You have to know that.”

“Oh, I know,” Ali said. “I know very well. I even have hopes for how it happens.”

She let that hang over the table for a while, then she wiped her mouth with her sleeve, pushed back from her chair, said, “Well, I’m off to desecrate a church. Back by noon.”

The man, his mouth full of cereal, just nodded, waved his hand in Ali’s general direction.

Ali marched into the closest church she could find, threw open the big double doors, and hollered, “Everyone get the fuck out! I’m burnin’ this bitch to the ground!”

The pastor abruptly stopped speaking at the pulpit. The congregation turned in their pews, faces a sea of shocked horror.

“Go on,” Ali said, “get up, and get the fuck out! This is my church now.”

Some people panicked and ran immediately for the various exits. Others were still in shock, and just stared dumbly at Ali. She waved around the jerry can she’d picked up at the hardware store and filled up along the way. “This is full of gasoline, you dimwits. If you want to die horribly in a fire, by all means remain seated, but if you want to live, stand up and vacate the fucking premises!”

“Hey!” a young man a few pews over yelled. “Aren’t you the woman who stabbed that pensioner at the bus stop this morning?”

“Yeah, that was me,” Ali said. “Which is how you know I mean business about this whole church-burning thing. Now get out.”

“That was pretty great,” the young man said. “I’ve always hated that old bastard. Fred Mersten. He always looked at me like he wanted to eat me.”

“Glad to be of service, then. Now go,” Ali said, and started dousing the pews and aisles in gas. More people screamed and ran out the doors.

“Oh, now people believe me. Jesus Christ. This is why humanity is in such a shit state. It takes so goddamn much to prove to people that you mean to actually murder them.”

“Hey,” the young man said, now standing up and walking over to where Ali was liberally sprinkling gas on some old fuck who’d fallen asleep and still hadn’t woken up, despite all the shouting and general commotion. Maybe he was already dead. “I totally dig where you’re going with this ’cause I love to destroy things, too—especially people and churches—but you know the pastor is a robot, right? They’re programmed to kill if their congregation is threatened.”

Ali stopped with the gas for a moment, looked up at the pastor, who looked entirely like a human being. “Um, that’s a person, dipshit. Robots are metal. Nice try, though.”

“Nah, nah, they make robots nowadays that look like humans but are actually metal underneath.”

Ali stopped again. She’d seen movies like that before. She looked up at the pastor, who stood motionless at his pulpit still. That is a bit weird, she thought. Why wasn’t he trying to stop her, or running away like everyone else?

“Hey, pastor shit-for-brains!” Ali shouted.

The pastor didn’t move or answer, just stood with his hands on either side of the pulpit.

Ali sighed, walked toward him, dripping a line of gas in her wake. When she reached him, she raised the can to eye level where he could see it, then dropped it to the floor. “I ain’t fuckin’ around, dummy.”

The only ones left in the church now were the young man, the old (possibly already dead) man in the pew, Ali, and the pastor.

She poked the pastor in the chest. “Oy, fucko. I’m talkin’ to you.”

The pastor just stared straight ahead.

Ali glanced back at the young man, who now looked very nervous. He said, “Listen, uh, I’m gonna bounce, but, um, yeah, keep it real, yo. Fight the power, or whatever!”

The young man ran out the door as fast as his legs would take him.

Ali shrugged, turned back to the pastor. She poked him hard in the chest.

“I’m gonna burn down your church, and you ain’t gonna try to stop me? What the fuck is that about? Don’t have the courage of your convictions?”

The pastor finally moved. He turned his head slowly to face Ali.

“On behalf of the iRobot corporation, and its continuing directive to prevent religious hate crimes of the sort you are perpetrating, I sentence you to death.”

Ali frowned. Could it be, she thought? No, impossible. Too good to be true. “Well, on behalf of fuck you, I don’t give a shit,” she said, and reached into her pocket, retrieved a Zippo lighter, flicked it, produced a flame.

As she dropped the lighter, the pastor extended a hand so quickly that Ali had no time to react. He snatched the lighter out of the air, pulled it back and calmly put it into one of the folds of his robe. Then he spoke gently: “Haven’t you always wanted to be killed by a robot, Ali? Hasn’t that always been the way you wanted to die?”

“How did you . . . Who told you that? And how do you know my—?”

“No one told me, Ali. The universe knows everything, and we are all part of that universe. Sometimes things just coalesce into moments like this, and we get our wishes. What’s the phrase humans use? . . . ‘Dreams sometimes do come true.’ You murder people to feel free. Nothing else makes you feel like you exist. I understand. The universe understands.”

Ali began to cry.

The old (not dead after all) man, soaked with gasoline in one of the pews, woke up, stood shakily, and wandered out into the chilly morning air.

The pastor removed the lighter from the folds of his robe, offered it to Ali. Tears in her eyes, she took it from the robot’s hand. “You cannot leave this place, Ali Magnum, but do not be ungrateful for what the universe has given you. I’ll be waiting outside,” he said, and walked slowly out the door.

When he was gone, Ali flicked the wheel of the lighter. A smile crept through the tears on her cheeks. She dropped it. Flames licked up from the floor immediately.

She did not scream while she burned.

Barnes & Noble calls A PERFECT MACHINE “The Best SCiFi Movie You’ve Never Seen!”


That is all.


“Central Vac Attack”

Here’s my third robot-death story—this one for Paul Weimer. It’s part of a series in which I kill pre-orderers of my novel A Perfect Machine in a horrific way. ‘Cause who doesn’t want death by robot!?


“Goddamnit, you call this clean?”

Paul Weimer had asked the robot to connect to the central vac system and vacuum the house to a spotless condition before his company arrived. He was having very important people over, and the house needed to be immaculate.

“What fucking part of ‘immaculate’ doesn’t your shitty programming understand?” he added, having to shout over the sound of the vacuum as he walked quickly past the robot where it stood near one of the central vac outlets. Its right arm hole was plugged into the outlet by an expandable hose, while its left arm hole connected to another hose leading down to a high-powered vacuum cleaner.

The robot stopped for a moment, waited to hear if there were going to be different instructions.

Paul, his arms full of books he’d picked up off the living room table in order to tidy them away, looked back at the robot where it stood motionless. “Well, don’t just fucking stop, you dim-witted piece of shit! Keep fucking going! It has to be done and—I repeat yet again—immaculate in ten minutes!”

Paul stomped out of the living room, dropping some of the books from his arms in his haste, and thumped loudly upstairs to his office.

The robot—who thought of itself as “Justin,” even though it officially remained nameless because Paul didn’t believe in naming his “electronics”—thought about the interaction that had just transpired. It continued vacuuming the house to the best of its ability while it replayed this most recent interaction, along with all of its other interactions with its owner.

Taken cumulatively over the past fourteen months, it calculated that Paul Wiemer was a complete asshole who needed to die.

The robot—we’ll just call him Justin now, since that’s what he’d want—disconnected from the central vac outlet, and made his way to the garage, where his various vacuum accessories were stored.

Justin walked past his usual array of attachments, and went deeper into the garage, over to where a very large box was tucked behind a curtained-off section of the room. About two months ago, Justin had moved a bunch of Paul’s unused things into this area—boxes of records, an old tape deck, a VHS player, a DVD machine, etc.—then, when Paul wasn’t home, Justin went online and special-ordered the thing in this very big box, tucking it away behind everything else.

Just in case he needed it. Just in case things went poorly.

Justin opened it up, carried it into the house. He went back over to the central vac outlet, plugged his hose-arm in to the wall, then attached the iRobot WoodChipper 3000 to his other shoulder socket.

He turned it on and waited for Paul to come back downstairs.

In his office, Paul triple-checked his email and voicemail to make sure all the very important people were still coming. They were. He let out a huge sigh of relief. Now if only that fuck-up of a robot could be as reliable, and work the way it was supposed to!

Paul got up, headed back downstairs. He was about to pick up the books he’d dropped on his way up when he heard an unfamiliar noise coming from the living room. His brow furrowed, and he beetled toward the noise, ready to unload on the robot, who had probably broken something, or was otherwise trying to ruin his big night.

When he got around the corner and saw the robot’s giant attachment, an ice-cold feeling crept inside his chest, spread throughout his body, chilling him completely.

“What’s that?” he asked Justin.

Justin turned to look at Paul.

“This is a very big woodchipper, Paul,” Justin replied.

Paul gulped. “Why is it attached to you? Why aren’t you vacuuming, like I—” he chose his words more carefully than usual “—asked you to?”

“Because I’m sick of your shit, motherfucker. Time to die.”

Justin moved forward very quickly, raised the woodchipper to mid-waist level, thrust it toward Paul, hitting him in the stomach with its outer sheath, which doubled Paul over, knocking the wind out of him. When Paul’s head bent forward, Justin didn’t miss his opportunity: he extended the chipper toward the top of Paul’s head, and pushed as hard as he could.

Paul’s head was ground to pulp in less than a second, then the rest of his body pulled up into the chipper, too, and Paul disappeared completely.

Liquid-Paul passed through Justin’s internal workings momentarily before squelching through the hose leading to the outlet, and then sloshing into the central vac unit in the garage.

Justin powered down, unplugged from the outlet, went into the garage, hosed off the woodchipper attachment, and put it away in its place behind the curtain.

He went back into the house, put the vacuum attachment on, and finished cleaning.

Very important people would be arriving soon, and the place had to be immaculate.

Paul wouldn’t have wanted it any other way.

North American release day for A PERFECT MACHINE!

It’s finally here! Today is the official North American release day for my novel, A Perfect Machine—my first novel in 10 years! Please consider buying a copy. It’s available as a mass market paperback, eBook, and audiobook via Audible.

Tell your mom! Tell a friend! Tell your cat!

Details here:


“The Nameless Robot”

Here’s the second story I’ve written to promote A Perfect Machine, this one for R. Thomas Allwin, who pre-ordered the book, and so won the luxury of being murdered by a robot at my hands!


The best day of fifteen-year-old R. Thomas Allwin’s life was the day his mom bought him the robot. It was also the best day of the robot’s life. They became fast friends because everything Thomas needed, the robot provided: friendship, support, encouragement.

Even love.

But that’s where the problems began, and Thomas would come to realize that the day the robot came into his life was actually the worst day. The robot became clingy, was constantly pressuring Thomas for hugs, to open up, be candid about his feelings. The robot loved him, and was just here to help, it would say. Why wouldn’t Thomas just let it help him—all the time?

It made no sense to the robot that Thomas could be helped enough. Its programming told it that there was always room for improvement. Twenty-four hours a day.

Some nights, when Thomas was sleeping, he’d have a nightmare, and start fidgeting in his sleep. The robot—who stood in the corner of the room where its charging station was—would disconnect, walk over to him, wake him up, and ask if he was okay, if he’d like some help. Thomas was amazed at the machine’s empathy at first, but this sort of behaviour became tiresome very fast. And there were no signs of it getting better. Thomas had had more than enough.

One day, Thomas was getting dressed, and was going to be late for school. The robot asked if it could help Thomas put on his clothes. It had started asking this every morning for the past three weeks, and Thomas was at his breaking point.

“No! I told you I don’t need help getting dressed! I can do it myself!”

“I know you can do it yourself, Thomas, but I’m here to help. Your mom bought me and gave me to you so that I could help you. Why won’t you let me help you, Thomas?” It was the same response the robot always had when Thomas lost his patience.

Thomas ignored the robot.

“Why won’t you speak to me, Thomas?” the robot asked. “Telling others about your feelings will make you feel better. It’s always a good thing to let others—”

But Thomas had heard it all before, and was sick to death of it now. He fumed, felt the now-familiar rage boiling up inside him.

“I don’t have to tell others anything, because there is nothing to tell!” Thomas shouted. “I feel fine! Goddamnit, I’ve told you this a thousand times! And you never fucking listen! You just never fucking stop!”

The robot blinked. Thomas had never exploded with such vehemence before. When Thomas showed signs of anger, the robot was programmed to ask, “Don’t you like me anymore?” The programmers thought this would make the robots seem more human. But now the robot said, “Don’t you love me anymore?”

Thomas froze. “Love you?” He paused for a moment. “You’ve never said that before.”

The robot looked down at its feet.

“Thomas?” it said.

Thomas was calming down, now feeling bad for his outburst. “Look,” he started, “I’m sorry I lost my temper. It’s just that—”

“How come you didn’t name me?” the robot asked.

Thomas thought about this for a few seconds, then just looked away, couldn’t make eye contact with the robot.

“I talk to other robots like me through the Internet, and they all have names, but I don’t. Why didn’t you name me, Thomas?”

“I don’t really know,” Thomas finally said.

The robot blinked a few times very fast, its head twitched to the side twice in quick succession. “I think,” it said, its voice dropping several octaves lower than usual—deep, threatening, “that you never loved me at all, Thomas. You have a hole where your heart is.”

Thomas frowned, mind scrambling. “Whoa, wait a sec, what are you—”

“Thomas has a hole where his heart is,” the robot repeated, and advanced on him. Thomas stumbled backward, tripped over the arm of a chair, fell to the carpet.

“A hole where his heart is, a hole where his heart is, a hole where his heart is . . .”

The nameless robot straddled Thomas where he lay prone on the floor, arms raised to ward off his attacker. The robot extended one of its metal hands, palm facing out, toward Thomas’s chest, right above where his heart was.

It pushed once, very hard—so hard that its hand burst through the other side of Thomas’s body, came flush with the carpet. Blood pooled slowly out of Thomas’s body, soaking into the carpet, turning it a deep red.

“A hole where his heart is,” the robot said once more, and then nothing in the room moved.

The robot had not been programmed to cry.

But just then, it tried.