Roc, May, 2001.
Paperback, 342 pages.
In the year 2075, Earth has changed quite a bit. The LINK is a sort of super-Internet which is accessed by a subcutaneous implant under the skin. Religion is very important in this society, but it is still a democracy. But anyone without a religious affiliation will find it hard to get a job, get credit or function easily in mainstream society. Deidre McMannus is an ex-cop who had her LINK access pulled because of her innocent involvement in a terrible crime; her partner Daniel Fitzpatrick assassinated the Pope. She was also excommunicated by the Catholic church. Off the force, Deidre has become a p.i., but life outside the LINK and outside society is almost impossible. A mysterious man called Michael hires her to investigate the phenomenon of Net Angels appearing to users on the LINK (with sometimes disastrous results). The Net Angels claim to be the real thing with a message from God, and a greedy politician is about to use this new power to convert the U. S. into a vicious, official theocracy.
Lyda Morehouse is a major new talent who has taken the cyberpunk subgenre and transformed it into something else entirely. Her description of a future society which turns its back on science after science nearly destroys everything is absolutely compelling, as are her characters. Just when you think you have all the plot twists figured out, Morehouse throws another kink into the mix. The book works equally well as a hardboiled detective story, even without the thought-provoking issues that she raises about the roles of technology, science and religion in the future of mankind.
Archangel Protocol is available for purchase on Amazon.com
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This review was published in the Oct. - Nov., 2001 of The Internet Writing Journal.
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