NECROTECH Punk shocker

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re­leased OUT NOW! 380 pages | Pa­per­back/ebook

Au­thor KC alexan­der Pub­lisher an­gry ro­bot

It’s 32 years since Wil­liam Gib­son’s Neu­ro­mancer was pub­lished, and cy­ber­punk still hasn’t gone out of style. It’s a flex­i­ble sub­genre with room for ev­ery­thing from provoca­tive pol­i­tics to trashy ac­tion, but Necrotech veers so hard in the di­rec­tion of lurid shocks that it wears out its wel­come fast.

It’s the tale of Riko, a tech-en­hanced fighter in a dark fu­ture where cy­ber­netic nan­otech­nol­ogy can spi­ral into “necrotech”, trans­form­ing peo­ple into killers. When Riko loses a chunk of her mem­ory and her girl­friend be­comes a necrotech vic­tim, she sets off to find who’s re­spon­si­ble, and is soon neck-deep in trou­ble, in­trigue and corpses.

KC Alexan­der throws in some in­ter­est­ing thoughts about tech­nol­ogy and tran­shu­man­ism, and there’s no short­age of gore and vis­ceral ac­tion. Un­for­tu­nately, she also cranks up the bleak, noir-ish at­ti­tude to a car­toon­ish level, giv­ing the nar­ra­tive a self­con­sciously “ex­treme” edge that rapidly gets both ex­haust­ing and un­pleas­ant. Riko her­self may be a vi­o­lent, sweary bad-ass but she also lacks depth and nu­ance, mean­ing that de­spite Necrotech’s full-tilt pace, it’s hard to care about any­thing in the story be­hind the ac­tion­packed fire­works. Saxon Bul­lock

KC Alexan­der pre­vi­ously wrote as Ka­rina Cooper, un­der which name she penned steam­punk ur­ban fan­tasy.

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