The year is 2027; in a world consumed by chaos and conspiracy, two people are set on a collision course with the most powerful and dangerous organization in history and the fate of humanity hangs in the balance.”
Back in the day I played the first Deus Ex game, and wasn’t that impressed, but after reading the back cover blurb and spotting words like “cybernetics”, “bio-augmentation” and “2027” I decided that I had to give Deus Ex: Icarus Effect a read, and I’m glad I did.
When I was at college I was introduced to the Cyberpunk 2013 & 2020 RPGs and quickly became obsessed with them and the cyberpunk novels of William Gibson, Deus Ex: Icarus Effect reminds me of both of these. Like Gibson, author James Swallow tells the story from the view points of two very different characters, who as the story progresses get drawn deeper and deeper into a conspiracy. Judging from his descriptions I have a sneaking suspicion that Swallow has also read his share of Cyberpunk RPGs as this novel is full of reflex boosts, subdermal armour, aerodynes, cyberoptics and cargo blimps.
After reading Deus Ex: Icarus Effect I’m tempted to pick up the 3rd Deus Ex game – Human Revolution which takes place in the same time frame as the novel. In fact, characters from the novel also show up in the game as adversaries, and Adam Jensen, the character you play in the game, gets a mention early on in the novel. Links are also made to the other Deus Ex games, you get to see the beginnings of the NSF, and Gunther Hermann (a cyborg from Deus Ex) is a supporting character. The interweaving is one advantage of the book having been written by James Swallow, one of the lead writers on Deus Ex 3.
If you miss quality cyberpunk tales then this book is for you, if you enjoy the Deus Ex games then this book is for you, if you enjoy fast paced thrillers… yep you guessed it, this book is for you. I just hope Swallow writes more Deus Ex novels so that we can see a continuation of this story.