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Thursday, September 3, 2020

MetrophageMetrophage by Richard Kadrey
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I admit that I'm something of a fan of cyberpunk. I guess it has something to do with my geeking out over Max Headroom and Neuromancer and all the cheeeeeesy movies of that time period, but for the most part, I was a much BIGGER fan of the post-cyberpunk movement.

Why? Because it moves beyond the punk while keeping all the tech goodies, diving into stories well beyond gangs, drug wars, noir, etc.

Kadrey's 1988 novel happens to be of that type. It's not bad. I love the idea of this kind of thing more in its ideas than its execution, granted, but, like Arnold's version of Total Recall, it's still good fun.

It's mostly about plot. Drug running, a wide variety of inner-city locations, post-government crime cabals, and even intrigue with a moon colony. More than anything, I was reminded of a lite version of Altered Carbon. Between an interesting plague, various factions, freedom fighters, and a poor MC bouncing like a pinball between everything, I was always kept on my toes.

Was this something that rose above a crazy slip-and-slide gangland adventure?

No, not really, but it did give me a flashback feel of the '80s.

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