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When Gravity Fails (Marid Audrian, Bk 1)
When Gravity Fails - Marid Audrian, Bk 1
Author: George Alec Effinger
In a decadent world of cheap pleasures and easy death, Marid Audrian has kept his independence the hardway. Still, like everything else in the Budayeen, he's available -- for a price. For a new kind of killer roams the streets of the Arab ghetto, a madman whose bootlegged personality cartridges range from a sinister James Bond to a sadistic dise...  more »
ISBN-13: 9780553255553
ISBN-10: 055325555X
Publication Date: 12/1/1987
Pages: 288
  • Currently 3.8/5 Stars.

3.8 stars, based on 26 ratings
Publisher: Spectra
Book Type: Mass Market Paperback
Other Versions: Hardcover
Members Wishing: 0
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reviewed When Gravity Fails (Marid Audrian, Bk 1) on + 205 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
This novel is more successful as science fiction than as a mystery/detective story because the actual "detective" part is sort of missing. Although Marid, the protagonist, follows various clues, he sort of stumbles onto the answers rather than actually figuring anything out. In spite of that (or perhaps because I'm not much of a mystery reader anyway), I really enjoyed this book; it was engaging, suspenseful and well written. Effinger has created an interesting, unique world (that isn't too "science-y") and I intend, at some point, to check out the second book in the series.
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reviewed When Gravity Fails (Marid Audrian, Bk 1) on + 77 more book reviews
When Gravity Fails is set in a world where the great nations have collapsed back into smaller kingdoms and holdings. There's technology - implants that give you knowledge while they're, like how to speak a language, others that give you the personality of the person the implant is copied from. Medical technology is advanced as well. There are a lot of post-op transgender people in the book. The feel is dark and gritty - almost noir. It's made clear that the part of the world we're seeing is a slum. I love that this book is set in the Middle East somewhere. It's nice to see books writing from a non-European culture viewpoint.

That said, the feel of the book was really all that was going on. At 25% into the book I couldn't really tell you what the plot was. There were various people dead, but as I said, this book is set in a slum, and the deaths are presented as business as usual. The main character certainly doesn't have any goal in mind beyond paying his rent. He seemed a somewhat decent guy, but I wasn't given anything that made me interested in knowing more about him, and with nothing in the plot drawing me in, I put it down and moved onto something that did catch my interest.

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