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PSIPOOK | books | woken furies

well-sleeved cyberpunk
Title: Woken Furies
Author: Richard Morgan
Publisher: Gollancz
Price: ¥1,260
ISBN: 0-575-07652-6

If Woken Furies is ever made into a film, the hero Takeshi Kovasc will be played by Vin Diesel. In fact, if Woken Furies were a person it would probably be Vin Diesel — overly muscled, totally bald and scary when riled.

The novel combines all the characteristics, ticks and memes of recent science fiction and then adds a few of its own. You have the dirty, grimy grittiness that the Alien movies put into SF and the savvy of cyberpunk created by William Gibson in Neuromancer. This stuff is light years away from the polished techno-utopianism of, say, Asimov or Star Trek.

Everyone seems to be part Japanese and part Slav, their speech is littered with Japanese vocabulary and English profanity, they carve kanji into their heads and are all enhanced with implanted widgets and gadgets and evil weapons.

It is so hip you wonder how it can get through doors.

Kovasc, some kind of digital soldier who enjoys his job a bit too much, is downloaded into a new body by persons unknown for a special job. Death incidentally is almost banished as everyone carries their personality in digital devices buried in the neck. Our hero finds that he has been in storage for 200 years and the world the he knew is no more. What is the special job? We are just wondering that as Kovacs gets mixed up with a band of mercenaries and someone shows up to rub Kovacs out — only the guy that turns up is himself — awkward, that. Now there are hints of a resurrected revolutionary and the forces of history flexing.

All of this is delivered in a carbon-hard, sharp-edged prose that owes more than a little to the best of pulp-noir fiction.

Kansai Scene, October 2005

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By the way, have you read Chris Page's novel Weed? It really is rather fantastic.

Words of praise for Weed from a publisher in London.

"... it’s really witty and very strong ... I would compare the writing to Robert Rankin, or a really satirically biting Tom Sharpe, and will say again that I’m really impressed by it"



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