Monday 6 September 2010

Into the Land of Cyber-punk: A Book Review of "Under the Amoral Bridge"

My Review of Under the Amoral Bridge by Gary A. Ballard:

Cyber-punk, near-future sci-fi, urban-sci-fi, any one of those terms could describe Under the Amoral Bridge by Gary A. Ballard. It could also be described as a good yarn featuring an ambiguous, yet relatable, main character.
“‘I know a guy,’ were the only important words Artemis Bridge uttered these days. All of his conversations with those words were a carefully choreographed dance routine, each step planned out in advance with only rare deviations from his expectations.”
The plot centers around Artemis Bridge, a slightly shady go-between who can get you what you want, be it illegal or immoral. It is business as usual until one of his deals goes sour and he finds himself with killers on his tail and in possession of information he doesn’t want.
“A trashcan slammed into his forehead loudly, sending the gun and its owner flying. Bridge rolled over and sucked in precious, stinking air, his face caked with alley mud. At first, the sounds of scuffle barely penetrated the veil of pain, but his head finally cleared enough to comprehend the scene.”
The book is a fairly standard cyber-punk sci-fi novel, but it does have a nice touch of nihilistic cynicism set in a scruffy, corrupt future. The characters are well-rounded, with the focal character neither heroic nor completely indifferent; he is just a guy trying to get himself out of a bad situation in one piece. Also, the author does do a splendid job of painting his future world, a gritty, dark place full of people turned jaded, corrupt or apathetic. The book isn’t perfect, though; the review copy had a few formatting mistakes and typos, if nothing major or overly distracting, but the novel itself was worth ignoring a few errors.

Under the Amoral Bridge started life on the blogs as serial fiction, but it translates well to book form and it is a satisfying, entertaining read.

Under the Amoral Bridge is the first in a series of books entitled The Bridge Chronicles.  For more information on The Bridge Chronicles check out the official blog:

Under the Amoral Bridge is available in print through and as well as an ebook on Kindle and Smashwords.

Note: I received a free copy of this book for review.


Joylene Nowell Butler said...

You've done a great job of capturing the essence of Gary's novel. It sounds intriguing. The premise certainly sounds like something I'd read. Thanks for taking the time to introduce the novel, Anita.

Unknown said...

This sounds like a good read. Excellent review.

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