I read this years ago and thought the author was Robert Wasserman (or similar) but after extensive searching, can't find him having written the book I'm looking for.

The protagonist (her name is possibly Lea Kahn (or similar)) is shunned after her operation by everyone except a geeky boy who looks after her when she powers down during the school day etc.

She falls in with a group of similar robots, and starts developing feelings for the gang leader. The boy who used to look after her jumps off a cliff (or something) so he too can become like her, but is told the operation is not possible for him.

What is this book called, and who is it by? Help!

  • 1
    Isn't the title also the basic premise of Ghost in the Shell? Oct 19, 2017 at 23:21

1 Answer 1


Lia Kahn is the protagonist of Skinned by Robin Wasserman.

Book Cover - Skinned

The Download was supposed to change the world. It was supposed to mean the end of aging, the end of death, the birth of a new humanity. But it wasn't supposed to happen to someone like Lia Kahn.

And it wasn't supposed to ruin her life.

Lia knows she should be grateful she didn't die in the accident. The Download saved her--but it also changed her, forever. She can deal with being a freak. She can deal with the fear in her parents' eyes and the way her boyfriend flinches at her touch. But she can't deal with what she knows, deep down, every time she forces herself to look in the mirror: She's not the same person she used to be.

Maybe she's not even a person at all.

Her nerdy friend who jumps from a great height but can't be given the operation is named Auden as per the character description on Wikipedia:

Auden - A social outcast, Auden is not a "designer baby" like the rest of his peers, because his mother didn't believe in "playing God." Due to a family history of mental illness, he is not eligible for download after jumping off a waterfall in an attempt to 'save' Lia (he forgot that she is nearly indestructible) leaves him gravely injured.

The "gang leader" is probably Jude.

Jude - A "mech" painted silver, with clear skin showing circuitry on his arm, Jude thinks Lia needs to let go of her "org" (organic) life and fully embrace the mechanical lifestyle. He was one of the first mech experiments, and is the ringleader of the group that lives at Quinn's.

The search that brought me there (albeit not the first set of terms I had plugged in) was book girl has her brain put in a robot.


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