PositiveThe RumpusCompared to the most sensational details on companies like WeWork or Theranos that have come out in recent years, there is nothing shocking or revelatory in Wiener’s account of startup life and culture. That’s also maybe the point. Rather than shocking and lurid details, recognition and familiarity play a key role in the experience of Uncanny Valley ... Deprecation, aimed at both the industry and the author herself, also plays a key role throughout the work. Certain paragraphs are so caustic they feel designed to be hastily photographed via mobile phone, dropped in group messages or social media feeds ... It’s undeniably enjoyable, but there is something indulgent about this sort of self-flagellation ... Luckily, Wiener offers us more than eloquent masochism. Uncanny Valley also provides precise depiction of cultural moments and movements in Silicon Valley: discrimination scandals, the obsession with optimization, data privacy concerns, the increased focus (if not clarity) on the question of content moderation. Wiener has a knack for perceiving abstract, structural issues and conveying them in specific and concrete language ... By way of all this careful observation, analysis, and biting sarcasm, we arrive at a detailed portrait of Weiner herself as someone inquisitive, tender, funny, and contradictory ... Uncanny Valley is, ultimately, a memoir, and a well-written and engaging one at that. It feels greedy to want more than it gives, to want contradictions resolved to a clear path forward. Nevertheless, this is part of what I felt upon finishing: what now? What next?