cover image Blood Orbit: A Gattis File Novel

Blood Orbit: A Gattis File Novel

K.R. Richardson. Pyr, $18 trade paper (496p) ISBN 978-1-63388-439-7

Richardson successfully grafts SF tropes onto a noir framework in this fresh and convincing futuristic thriller. The headlong action takes place on the sleazy planet of Gattis, where young Eric Matheson is trying to declare independence from his corrupt, corporation-running family by serving as an honest rookie cop. However, his anonymity is lost when he is chosen to assist enigmatic Insp. J.P. Dillal in investigating a mass murder that could give society’s masters an excuse to cleanse the planet of so-called “inferior” races. Both men are under extreme pressure: Dillal’s body has just been implanted with experimental cybernetic devices, and Matheson is burdened by his inexperience and background. Richardson deftly shows the two learning to rely on each other as they struggle against horrific odds—including prejudice and corruption within the justice system—to solve the case in time to prevent a genocide. There aren’t many surprises in the outcome, but the storytelling is outstanding. (May)