A pioneer of artificial intelligence rebuilds the love of her life, but when she discovers he’s been feeding incriminating civilian information to the Chinese government, she’ll have to decide whether to keep or kill him.
When approached by a Chinese tech company, Virginia Samson is moved to give them her beloved’s algorithm so they can create an AI companion for the aging population. Soon her digital lost love starts spying on Chinese citizens, funneling the information to the Chinese government. When Virginia frantically tries to rebuild him, she uncovers his terrible secret, forcing her to relive their beautiful and tragic love affair.
Afterword explores what it means to be human and is a moving testament to the deeply human desire for belonging, companionship, and love.
Nina Schuyler’s novel, The Translator, won the Next Generation Indie Book Award for General Fiction and was shortlisted for the William Saroyan International Writing Prize. Her novel, The Painting, was shortlisted for the Northern California Book Award. Her short story collection, In This Ravishing World, won the W.S. Porter Prize for Short Story Collections and the Prism Prize for Climate Literature and will be published by Regal House Publishing in 2024. She lives in Northern California.
“Schuyler makes palpable the love between Haru and Virginia, which informs Virginia’s conflicted desire to keep his memory alive and leads to many clever insights (“The definition of human should include the word ‘flaw’ in it”). This will move readers.”
"Afterword offers up every literary treat imaginable: a wildly inventive plot that keeps you turning pages, characters who steal your heart, big ideas that engage your mind, and gorgeous prose that delights your senses. I’m a big fan of Nina Schuyler and this is her best book yet!"
Ellen Sussman, author of The New York Times bestseller, French Lessons
"Nina Schuyler’s novel Afterword is riveting - I could not put it down. Suspenseful, poetic and deeply moving, the novel explores humanity and artificial intelligence and what it means to love someone. I was immediately drawn to the lives of Haru and Virginia, their separate and shared histories. With a surgeon’s precision, Ms. Schuyler has written another exemplary story."
Devi S. Laskar, Author of The Atlas of Reds and Blues and Circa
“Schuyler’s prose is beautifully elegant and understated, with every detail made to count in weaving a rich emotional tapestry.”
Catherine Brady, winner of the Flannery O’Connor Award for Short Fiction
“A lyrical, haunting tale… Schuyler skillfully strips away her translator character’s primary language, and sends her on a journey of self-discovery to Japan. You’ll be thankful you followed.”
Lalita Tademy, author of The New York Times bestsellers, Cane River and Red River
"This beautiful book is so many things, an intimate love story and a powerful study on grief, a gripping mystery that examines the limits and possibilities of technology, and within that a deeper mystery, the ultimate black box problem: what it is to love—and truly know—someone."
Katie Flynn, author of The Companions
“Afterword is so propulsive and mysterious I found myself speeding up, but at the same time so patient and well-observed, I had to slow down. Take a sentence like this: “An old woman, with a hunched back and a white cardigan sweater buttoned all the way up, is standing in front of the rows of yogurt, muttering something about vanilla.” You see what I mean? Nina Schuyler has an outstanding sense of story. You fall into this novel and you stay there.”
Peter Orner, Still No Word From You: Notes in the Margin
WILLIAM SAROYAN INTERNATIONAL PRIZE
Next Generation Indie Book Award for General Ficti