Altered Carbon is a three-book series written by Richard K. Morgan that takes readers on an intense and thrilling journey into a future where technology has changed what it means to be human. With a blend of science fiction, mystery, and action, this series is sure to captivate fans of all three genres.
The first book in the series, also titled Altered Carbon, introduces readers to Takeshi Kovacs, a former soldier and criminal who is brought back to life after 250 years in a new body. In this future, human consciousness is stored on "stacks," small devices implanted in the neck that can be transferred between bodies. Kovacs is brought back to life by a wealthy man named Laurens Bancroft, who wants him to investigate his own murder. Bancroft believes he was killed but cannot remember anything from the night of his death due to a backup glitch in his stack. Kovacs must navigate a web of intrigue and danger to uncover the truth about Bancroft's murder and the motives behind it.
The second book, Broken Angels, takes place thirty years after the events of Altered Carbon. Kovacs is now working as a mercenary and is hired by a corporate entity to retrieve an alien artefact from a planet that was destroyed in a brutal war. Along the way, Kovacs reunites with an old friend and encounters a mysterious woman with a dark past. The mission quickly becomes complicated, and Kovacs must fight his way through dangerous territory to retrieve the artefact and uncover the secrets it holds.
The third and final book in the series, Woken Furies, sees Kovacs return to his home planet of Harlan's World after years spent away. He finds the planet in turmoil, with a rebellion brewing against the ruling Protectorate. Kovacs becomes embroiled in the conflict and begins to uncover a conspiracy that threatens to destroy the entire planet. Along the way, he also reconnects with people from his past and confronts his own personal demons.
One of the standout features of the Altered Carbon series is its world-building. Richard K. Morgan has created a detailed and immersive future that feels both realistic and fantastical. The concept of stacks and the ability to transfer consciousness between bodies is a fascinating one that is explored in depth throughout the series. Morgan also delves into the political and societal implications of this technology, such as the disparity between the wealthy, who can afford to constantly upgrade their bodies and the poor, who are stuck in the bodies they were born with.
The characters in the series are also well-developed and complex. Takeshi Kovacs is a compelling protagonist who is both flawed and likeable. He is a product of his past but also has the capacity for growth and change. The supporting characters are also well-written and add depth to the story. Each book introduces new characters while also revisiting old ones, creating a sense of continuity throughout the series.
The action in the Altered Carbon series is intense and brutal. There are numerous fight scenes and shootouts, all described in vivid detail. Morgan does not shy away from the violence of this future world, and the consequences of violence are also explored throughout the series. This is not a series for the faint of heart but for those who enjoy action-packed stories with high stakes and high emotions.
Overall, the Altered Carbon series is a must-read for fans of science fiction, mystery, and action. Richard K. Morgan has created a rich and immersive future that is both thrilling and thought-provoking. The characters are complex and relatable, and the action is intense and brutal. This series is a true masterpiece of the genre and will keep readers on the edge of their seats until the very end.
Titles in This Set:
- Altered Carbon
- Broken Angels
- Woken Furies
Description from the publisher:
This must-read story is a confident, action-and-violence-packed thriller and future classic noir SF novel from a multi-award-winning author. Four hundred years from now mankind is strung out across a region of interstellar space inherited from an ancient civilization discovered on Mars. The colonies are linked together by the occasional sublight colony ship voyages and hyperspatial data-casting. Human consciousness is digitally freighted between the stars and downloaded into bodies as a matter of course.
Fifty years after the events of ALTERED CARBON, Takeshi Kovacs is serving as a mercenary in the Procterate-sponsored war to put down Joshuah Kemp's revolution on the planet Sanction IV. He is offered the chance to join a covert team chasing a prize whose value is limitless -- and whose dangers are endless. Here is a novel that takes mankind to the brink. A breakneck-paced crime thriller, ALTERED CARBON took its readers deep into the universe Morgan had so compellingly realised without ever letting them escape the onward rush of the plot. BROKEN ANGELS meld SF, the war novel and the spy thriller to take the reader below the surface of this future and lay bare the treacheries, betrayals and follies that leave man so ill-prepared for the legacy he has been given: the stars. This is SF at its dizzying best: superb, yet subtle, world-building; strong yet sensitive characterisation; awesome yet believable technology, thrilling yet profound writing. Richard Morgan is set to join the genre's worldwide elite.
This is high-action, ideas-driven noir SF of the highest order. Morgan has already established himself as an SF author of global significance. Takeshi Kovacs has come home. Home to Harlan's World. An ocean planet with only 5% of its landmass poking above the dangerous and unpredictable seas. Try and get above the weather in anything more sophisticated than a helicopter, and the Martian orbital platforms will burn you out of the sky. And death doesn't just wait for you in the seas and the skies. On land, from the tropical beaches and swamps of Kossuth to the icy, machine-infested wastes of New Hokkaido, the hard-won gains of the Quellist revolution have been lost. The First Families, the corporations and the Yakuza have a stranglehold on everything.
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