Friday (novel)

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Friday is a 1982 science fiction novel by Robert A. Heinlein. It is the story of a female "artificial person," the titular character, genetically engineered to be stronger, faster, smarter, and generally better than normal humans. Artificial humans are widely resented, and much of the story deals with Friday's struggle both against prejudice and to conceal her enhanced attributes from other humans. The story is set in a Balkanized world, in which the nations of the North American continent have been split up into a number of smaller states.

Friday was nominated for the Nebula Award for Best Novel in 1982,[1] and the Hugo Award for Best Novel in 1983.[2]


Plot summary

The book's protagonist is Friday, an artificial person both mentally and physically superior in many ways to an ordinary human, but who faces great prejudice if her "non-human" status is discovered. Employed as a highly self-sufficient courier, her various missions take her throughout the globe, and even near-Earth colonies. The novel is set in a complex, Balkanized world, and Friday is caught up in several civil disturbances during the course of her travels. She reaches her employer's home base safely, but is soon displaced. Sent on a space journey as a courier, she realizes that the journey is likely to end with her death, and evades the ship's authorities to settle on a pioneer world with friends made earlier in the narrative.

Awards and nominations

Friday received nominations for the following awards

Literary significance and reception

The 1982 Library Journal review said that Heinlein "returns to an earlier style of brisk adventure mixed with polemic in the saga of special courier Friday Jones."[5]

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