When I was at Borders recently, not currently having anything to read, I happened to see two EVE books. I decided to pick both up since I found nothing else caught my eye. I confess I have read many more emails from corp leaders than mission text in EVE. I had never read anything by Tony Gonzalez (not by the way the same Tony G. who is a tight end for the Atlanta Falcons), but read this book first as it was published first.
One thing I noticed upon examining the cover was that someone could easily have picked up this book knowing nothing of the EVE the MMO. I kept this in mind while reading it. I was impressed with the way the author put game mechanics into a plausible sci-fi lens. An innocent reader could well have envisioned the Neocom, the map screen, and the ship skills as cybernetic/genetic manipulative processes, independent of EVE online UI.
The book has a complex plot, involving all four major factions in EVE. Shady deals, spies, corporate takeovers violent and covert abound. A naïve reader will be immersed in the lore of the four factions. An experienced EVE player will likely be even more anxious for 'walking in stations,' after reading this. The initiate will find perhaps a greater thrill when they discover, only midway through the novel, the origins of the humans beyond the deprecated EVE gate.
Another talent Gonzalez has is making no character a clear hero or villain. More than an abstract painting than a portrait, the novel sucks you into a chaotic world where you don’t know where to place your loyalties.
I intend to share this book with a colleague who knows nothing about EVE Online. I think she’ll enjoy the book and I am quite curious if she is able to discern its origins. I will update if I get a chance.
"Never met a pack of humans that were any different. Look at the idiots that get elected every couple of years. You really consider those guys more mature than us? The only difference between us and them is, when they gank some noobs and take their stuff, the noobs actually die." - Madimorga