I finished Peter F. Hamilton's "Mindstar Rising" tonight, and just realized I've hit bookworm heaven -- discovered two fabulous and prolific Science Fiction authors this month (the other is David Weber - see my "techno-babble" blog) -- and that makes about fifty books I can anticipate enjoying. It's like Christmas in September.
I don't have any other books in my library that have been described as cyber-punk, and I'm not sure I want to, but for Hamilton's incredible mind, I'll happily make the exception. The setting of "Mindstar Rising" reminds me somewhat of the television series "Dark Angel" - only in Britain instead of Seattle. The tension ranges between high, higher and highest - it made me think of Robert Ludlum's suspense thrillers. The characters are so strong, the action so well-choreographed, that I was sure the book would already be a movie, but sadly it isn't.
And this was his first book! I favor stories with a strong woman as the main character, so it took me until page 100 to warm to the male MC, a former soldier and assassin who uses his psi talent to promote a sexual relationship with a young woman whose outstanding attributes include a long legs and a large breasts. I came very close to quitting the book before discovering the charm and depth of the MC, and the complexity of the writer's characters.
So, you've been warned. Do not dismiss this book (despite the first chapter), as just another formula "male fantasy" novel with a misanthropic, emotionally unavailable anti-hero. It's as far from that as you can get. I can't wait to read the next story in Peter's trilogy: "A Quantum Murder".