November 22, 2010
Book Review By: Mr. Roboto
Author: Ryan A. Span
Category: Cyberpunk Books
Website: Street of Eyes
First of, an apology. I had received Ryan’s second Street of Eyes novel back in May. That time period was rather confused with a lay-off, some temporary work, unemployment, then being called back to work, and a reading and review got lost in the shuffle. There’s only one way to describe how I feel for letting this go for so long…
Fortunately, I did manage to cram the entire book into my eyeballs this weekend. I can say that the second Street novel ain’t no huurrr-duuurrr hurpa-derp. What it is is a worthy successor to Empathy that picks up where it left off: With Gina recovering on a Ukraine fishing trawler after her fall from an airship in a lifeboat. She gets to know the ship’s captain, his wife, and the fishing village where the couple live. But her telepathic powers are still in effect, and they have her hopping into the heads/bodies of Rat and Bomber. Soon, Gina wants to leave the simple fishing life and try to find Bomber, fearing Gabriel may have killed him.
Meanwhile, Bomber (now going by Simon Caine) is recovering from jumping out of that same airship. He begins looking for Gina and Gabriel, but needs help from hackers Jock and Rat. Rat is given a unique opportunity: She is invited to be a ranked hacker by working for the lead hacker himself, the King of Laputa. Only she meets another woman who used to be the leader until outed by the current king and is now planning a revolt against what she sees as a “boy’s club” (the Fifteen leaders of the hacker nations).
Past Prologue. For Clairvoyance, we get to learn more about some of the character back-stories. Gina used to be Emily Vaughn, the daughter of a well-to-do family who resented her father’s social climbing by “being a lap dog for the Federation.” Bomber was a US Marine who underwent ID changes as needed. And Gabriel was a survivor of a nuclear attack because of a secret nanotech program. This gives our characters the background that explains their current actions, and a little foreshadowing as those pasts return to haunt them in various ways.
Don’t derp out on volume two. Already, Ryan is working on the third and final Street volume (aka Precognition) on his site. If Clairvoyance is any indication, Precognition should be the magnum opus for the Street series. In the meantime, better get Clairvoyance (and Empathy if you don’t have it yet) to prepare for the grand finale.