Altered Carbon


I’m a fan of near-future science fiction, especially stuff which is neither dystopic or eutopic, because the world is neither now and will not turn into either in the future. That doesn’t leave a whole lot of choice though, this sub-genre is fairly small, with most sci-fi featuring alien worlds, spaceships and, more recently, space operas.

I’d heard of Altered Carbon from a number of places and it was on my wishlist for a while. So when I was in the mood I added it to an order and finally sat down to read it. I’m glad I did.

Aside from the Earth-based futurism there is also a degree of noir detective thriller as well, another genre I like, so it worked out well and I ploughed through it quickly.

It certainly doesn’t pull any punches, this is a hard edge story filled with sex, torture and all sorts of violence but it’s also stuffed with interesting ideas on what the future of technology holds and what impact they’ll have on society.

More importantly, the characters are well drawn, the plot fast-paced and the action relentless, drawing you in and holding your attention to the last page.

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Reviewed: 28th August 2010