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Broken Angels Paperback – March 2, 2004
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Intrusion: A Novel
A loving couple, grieving the loss of their son, finds their marriage in free fall when a beautiful, long-lost acquaintance inserts herself into their lives. Learn More
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The Martians disappeared long ago, but they left behind their star gates, which have allowed humanity to spread across the galaxy--and bring warfare to the stars. As Broken Angels opens, Takeshi Kovacs is a lieutenant in humankind's most feared mercenary company, but rumors of an astonishing archaelogical discovery inspire his desertion. Humans have never found a Martian starship until, perhaps, now. If the rumors are true, and the ruthless Kovacs can take possession of the unprecedented relic, he will make his fortune. But if he fails in his quest, he may find himself imprisoned in high-tech hell for eternity. --Cynthia Ward
From Publishers Weekly
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Top Customer Reviews
This book has been available in the UK for the better part of a year, and having been thoroughly impressed with Morgan's first book, I've been eagerly awaiting the US release of his second. I am _so_ not disappointed.
You'll recognize the backdrop; it's the same corporate-controlled dystopian future we've seen in pretty much every cyber-nano-crypto-geno-neuro-psycho-techno-noir SF novel since Phil Dick founded cyberpunk and forgot to insist on receiving credit for it.
But Morgan isn't just recycling familiar themes here, any more than Beethoven imitated Bach by using some of the same notes. Morgan has his own outlook, his own themes, and his own voice.
If you've read the introductory plot summaries elsewhere on this page, you already know everything I could tell you without spoiling things. Suffice it to say that Takeshi Kovacs is back and in excellent form. Here, he's initially serving with Carrera's Wedge, deployed on Sanction IV against an uprising led by one Joshua Kemp, when he's approached with -- and accepts -- a surprising offer.
_Broken Angels_ not only has a fine plot of its own but fills in some more of the backstory for _Altered Carbon_. Nor is it a rehash of its hardboiled-PI predecessor; this one's military SF, more along the lines of _The Forever War_, with which it shares some abstract themes and narrative flavor.
That narrative flavor alone makes the book worth reading. Morgan is such a powerful writer that even if you get bored with the action (not likely), you can enjoy yourself by just sitting back and watching the prose crackle. (But don't look away for even a single paragraph; you'll miss something.)
In short, _Broken Angels_ will appeal to readers who liked _Altered Carbon_ but who don't expect Morgan to keep rewriting the same book over and over. _Very_ well done, and it belongs on the very shortest shortlist of good recent SF.
Broken Angels is a wonderful book and I recommend it. It's a page-turner, but I have to say it isn't as hard-hitting as Altered Carbon. Still, to say that it is not as good would be unfair because the two books can't be compared. Where Morgan's antihero, Takeshi Kovacs, was ex-special-ops-turned-private-eye-by-circumstance in the first book, this time he returns to his military roots as a mercenary fighting a planetary rebellion. The mystery novel is a genre that lends itself to the twist and turns that makes Altered Carbon great. Morgan (perhaps smartly) avoids comparison by choosing a much more subdued wartime setting for this adventure.
One thing that remains constant is the darkness; you can't get more noir than this. While Morgan's consciousness-digitizing technology was cool and mind-bending in the first book, here it is dehumanizing and bleak. In one scene, Kovacs goes to a "souls market" where piles and piles of "stacks" (digitized personalities of real people) could be bought. Death is no longer the worst punishment possible; centuries of torture can be inflicted on your digital self. War and the attendant death have lost meaning. All this and the zero-sum power games played by governments, corporations, and guilds seem to contribute to Kovac's increasingly nihilist worldview.Read more ›
With Broken Angels Morgan is moving into a different territory. There is still the "great mystery" that is the subject of just about any book of this type, but Morgan does a better job with the characters and plot. The one thing that I actually like that seems to upset other reviewers is that he does not always explain the 'cultural artifacts' that he inserts. I like how he references some idea, only to move on, leaving it for future exploration or your own imagination of how it ties into his world. In particular, I love the Quellist quotes that lay throughout both books. I'd love to see him write a "biography" of Quellcrist Falconer and hope its already planned. Given the big revelation at the end of the book, he certainly intends to continue with the Quellist involvement in the books.
Just as a possibility, by looking at the acknowlegements section of this book, it should be clear that he leans towards a feminist/evil government/evil corporation world view and it impinges upon his writing. I think in many ways he is trying to do for these subjects what Andrew Vachss has done for child abuse with his books, but he's not quite as good an author as Vachss.
Anyway, please go out and read both of these books. They deserve to be read as some of the better sci-fi with cyberpunk overtones that have been published in a while. I'd have to rate them as my most favorite books since Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This the second in the series. I did only it but liked the first far better.Published 5 days ago by k m kinder
Great book continuing the story of Kovacs. I actually like this book a little more than the first one, which was also great. Buy it, read it! You won't be disappointed.Published 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
Broken Angels is the second novel of the Takeshi Kovacs series. Whereas Altered Carbon was a future noir detective story in the future, Broken Angels is a war picture. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
Takeshi is a great character and although reading Altered Carbon is not necessary, people will find the background useful.Published 2 months ago by Donnie Gibson
Nowhere near as good as Altered Carbon. The plot is not that great, and in the end anti-climactic. The staccato dialogue was very annoying where the characters never finish a... Read morePublished 2 months ago by CAMILLVS
I'd say I enjoyed Broken Angels, but certainly not as much as Altered Carbon. I'm starting book three, and hoping we find more of the noir intrigue from the first book.Published 3 months ago by Isaac Epp
Completely different genre from the first, but still very entertaining.Published 3 months ago by Alex