Backcover Synopsis: Cynical, quick-on-the-trigger Takeshi Kovacs, the ex-U.N. envoy turned private eye, has changed careers, and bodies, once more . . . trading sleuthing for soldiering as a warrior-for-hire, and helping a far-flung planet’s government put down a bloody revolution. But when it comes to taking sides, the only one Kovacs is ever really on is his own. So when a rogue pilot and a sleazy corporate fat cat offer him a lucrative role in a treacherous treasure hunt, he’s only too happy to go AWOL with a band of resurrected soldiers of fortune. All that stands between them and the ancient alien spacecraft they mean to salvage are a massacred city bathed in deadly radiation, unleashed nanotechnology with a million ways to kill, and whatever surprises the highly advanced Martian race may have in store. But armed with his genetically engineered instincts, and his trusty twin Kalashnikovs, Takeshi is ready to take on anything – and let the devil take whoever’s left behind.
Quite a different book compared to the first Kovac’s novel. Here we have something that reads more like a war novel, instead of noir fiction. Also Kovac’s is in a different position than in the first novel. There, despite his actions, he was a kind of good guy, but in BA he’s just another soldier trying to survive, not better or worse than those with whom he clashes. Parts of the book reminded me of the background of WJW’s “Voice of the Whirlwind”, where corporates fight wars over alien technology. There like here the aliens turn out to be not much better than the humans.