This science fiction police procedural pairs an idealistic rookie with an officer who uses cybernetic implants to process forensics; in solving a mass murder, they will uncover a vast conspiracy.
Eric Matheson, an idealistic rookie cop trying to break from his powerful family, is plunged into the investigation of a brutal crime in his first weeks on the job in Angra Dastrelas, the corrupt capital city of the corporate-owned planet Gattis. A newcomer to the planet, Matheson is unaware of the danger he's courting when he's promoted in the field to assist the controversial Chief Investigating Forensic Officer, Inspector J. P. Dillal, the planet's first cybernetically enhanced investigator. Coming from a despised ethnic underclass, the brilliant and secretive Dillal seems determined to unravel the crime regardless of the consequences. The deeper they dig, the more dangerous the investigation becomes. But in a system where the cops enforce corporate will, instead of the law, the solution could expose Gattis's most shocking secrets and cost thousands of lives--including Matheson's and Dillal's.
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I was really looking forward to this book. I'm two volumes in to the author's (Kat Richardson) Greywalker series and starting to like it a lot. Science fiction is more up my alley, which made this an easy choice for me. After the first couple of chapters, I was hooked. A heavy-duty, noir, police procedural set in the future on a far away planet. And then she lost me. The characters were still doing some interesting things. But they were sure doing a lot more talking than doing. The setting seemed like it should be interesting - terraformed future planet and all that. But the picture never came into focus for me. And all the complex background of the characters and corporate corruption was alluded to. But somehow I didn't really care until about the last 25-30% of the book. I was actually considering giving up about 1/3 of the way in. But there was too much positive vibe to be a quitter. Things did get better. I did finish. And I will pick up the next one (and continue working my way through Greywalker).
Great start to a new series.
Rookie Eric Matheson and his mate discover a gruesome, mind-blowing massacre of sixteen victims. His mate is injured and Matheson is assigned to investigate the murders with the Chief Forensic Officer, Inspector J. P. Dillal. Dillal is the first cybernetic investigator in the corporate-run planet of Gattis. But Dilall has origins from a despised ethnic underclass in a caste system that not only feeds dislike but also guarantees outbreaks of violence. The murders occurred in what is called a jassi, a place where illegal activities flourish and bonds among the criminal elements of society develop in spite of the clandestine nature of these jassi meetings. Matheson and Dilall are charged with solving the murders quickly with hints that failure to speedily conclude this matter could have devastating results for both men. At the same time, Dilall is new to this cybernetic life and there are some adjustments that need to happen in order for him to avoid infection and death to his new mechanical being. Dillal is glad he has a rookie for a colleague in this investigation so that he can train him in techniques that actually work, before the rookie Matheson is tainted by the local police who are supposed to enforce the law but instead pursue the interests of Corporate goals and greed. Matheson’s peers however, resent his promotion to this job and violently let him know it. Add to that the groups on the street who support and more often oppose him finding the answers about this murder. The reality is that corporate office is trying to cover up the truth so they can name one of the lower-class groups as guilty, thereby justifying some elaborate methods of exterminating the despised lower class or classes of Gattis. To say more would spoil the conflict’s evolution; suffice to say Dillal and Matheson will solve the crime but may not live to enjoy the victory! This sci-fi novel is very difficult to follow, but it’s worth it to break through the challenging group names, acts by superiors to confuse and alter the progress of the investigation, and determine who are the ones directing Corporation commands. Interesting read and recommended for true sci-fi fans!