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The Dark Side by Anthony O'Neill
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The Dark Side

by Anthony O'Neill

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Really cinematic, pretty dark. I liked it! ( )
  adamwolf | Oct 2, 2016 |
This is a combination noir mystery, science fiction, and futuristic Moon travel guide and it works very well. Parts of the Moon have been turned into a home for those on the run and you can believe it all with a determined cop, a murderous android, and ruthless business people.

Free review copy. ( )
  mrmapcase | Aug 18, 2016 |
Purgatory is a lunar territory founded, and dominated, by Fletcher Brass. The capital of Purgatory is the domed city called Sin. Most of the citizens of Purgatory are fugitives from Earth. QT Brass is Fletcher's 31 year old daughter. Fletcher and QT are constantly outdoing each other in being dishonest, deceitful and completely repellent.

This book has very imaginative descriptions of Sin, like the raindrops that "splat like slow-motion water balloons". Parts of Sin feel like they came out of a 1950s cop drama, parts feel like Babylon. Brass has developed a series of rules of business conduct and philosophies called the Brass Code, including: "Never let the fly know when you're going to swat"; "Find Oz. And be the Wizard"; and "If you can't cover your tracks, cover those who see them".

Lieutenant Damien Justus is the lone honest cop who has recently come to Sin. He is immediately plunged into investigating a series of murders, including that of an important scientist. Justus joins a strangely disinterested police department headed by an obese buffoon with questionable motives.

While the police procedural part of the book is going on, there is a parallel story taking place on the dark side of the moon. A penal colony was established there to both isolate the most horrific criminals on Earth and as an experiment about the physical and psychological effects of long term exposure to the lunar environment on the human body. This part of the plot involves a rogue android named Leonardo Black. Black takes the Brass Code very literally. For a while he is pursued by a suspicious civilian named Plaisance. Some of the Plaisance story reminded me of "The Martian", but I won't tell in what way, because that would be a spoiler. If an android can legitimately be described as delusional, then the word certainly fits Black. After the first few times he encounters humans as he tries to make his way to Sin, we pretty much know what to expect from him. For that reason, I don't think that part of the book worked as well as the police procedural part. The Leonardo Black/ human encounters seemed redundant and pointless until the end of the book.

I thought the book was entertaining. I have no idea whether the author is planning on other books set in this world, but I liked Justus and would read another book featuring him.

I received a free copy of this book from the publisher. ( )
  fhudnell | Jan 15, 2016 |
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Everyone is a moon, and has a dark side which he never shows to anybody.
Mark Twain
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Only a lunatic would live on the Moon.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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"In this dark and gripping sci-fi noir, an exiled police detective arrives at a lunar penal colony just as a psychotic android begins a murderous odyssey across the far side of the moon." --

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