Books: The Infernal Machine

LONELIEST GIRL IN THE WORLD (238 pp.)—Kenneth Fearing—Harcourt, Brace ($3).

Mikki was what Ellen Vaughn had instead of God. He was a strange deity chock-full of panels, bobbins, and spools of wire. His memory was perfect and his playback repertory ran to 463,635 recorded hours. Ellen's late father, an audio-research addict, had fed Mikki everything: Bach, stock-market predictions, forgotten pre-Edison records. "Some jukebox!" said her younger brother Charles, admiringly. But Mikki was more than a giant jukebox; he was first cousin to all the electronic brain machines whose touted destiny is to make modern man obsolete.

Without conscious malice, Mikki just...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!