By Peter Watts
(Del Rey, Paperback, 9780345526786, 320pp.)
Publication Date: March 22, 2011
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MANHATTAN IS UNDER NEW MANAGEMENT.
THEY’RE NOT FROM AROUND HERE.
Welcome to the Big Apple, son. Welcome to the city that never sleeps: invaded by monstrous fusions of meat and machinery, defended by a private army that makes Blackwater look like the Red Cross, ravaged by a disfiguring plague that gifts its victims with religious rapture while it eats them alive. You’ve been thrown into this meat grinder without warning, without preparation, without a clue.
Your whole squad was mowed down the moment they stepped onto the battlefield. And the chorus of voices whispering in your head keeps saying that all of this is on you: that you and you alone might be able to turn the whole thing around if you only knew what the hell was going on.
You’d like to help. Really you would. But it’s not just the aliens that are gunning for you. Your own kind hunts you as a traitor, and your job might be a bit easier if you didn’t have the sneaking suspicion they could be right. . . .
Biologist, author, and convicted felon, Peter Watts (author of Blindsight and the Rifters trilogy) appears to be especially popular with people who have never met him. At least, pretty much every award his work has received comes from overseas (with the exception of a recent Hugo, which probably won on a sympathy vote in the wake of recent encounters with the Department of Homeland Security). His science fiction, oddly enough, has been used as a core text in science and philosophy courses as well as the usual gamut of sf electives; he only wishes his actual science had been taken half as seriously, back in the day. Both he and his cat have appeared in the prestigious journal Nature.