The superintelligence that is the narrator in Vertebrae is a pure, disembodied consciousness, yet possessing distinct human characteristics and gradually taking on a more solid form. His name is simply “I,” and he carries a secret: He dreams of becoming a true human being. And he still dreams of his great love, Maria.
The novel is set far in the future, in a posthuman and post-biological society. The narrator resides in a world called Vertebrae – a new all-encompassing world system that is a direct extension of our digital era. The system employs all possible methods and has taken over the entire world, its politics, its economy and its religion.
Vertebrae can be read as a standalone sequel to the novel Identity (2017), and the narrator who takes the lead is an avatar of the jack of all trades Hallandsås from the same novel.