Set in a Britain extrapolated from today’s violent streets, yet still highly recognisable, Edge is the first in what will hopefully be a long running series. Those who remember Edward Woodward’s late 1970s series 1990 will get some of the same vibe from the world created for Edge, where surveillance is everywhere, but people still get on with their lives. Unlike many dystopiae created in recent years, with their emphasis on global warming, this one seems all too possible.
The writing is fast-paced, with the action sequences highly reminiscent of Adam Hall’s Quiller spy novels – perhaps unsurprisingly, given that both Blackthorne, aka best-selling SF author John Meaney, and Hall know and use the fighting moves that their protagonists practise.
The scope of the story ramps up almost imperceptibly, so that the final assault on the Barbican Centre where a Running Man-style competition is reaching its climax in the presence of the Prime Minister doesn’t jar. Throughout the book, Blackthorne sketches in the global geopolitical landscape, and it would be good to learn more about that in the promised sequel.
Verdict: Another success for the Angry Robot imprint. 8/10
By Thomas Blackthorne
Angry Robot, out now
Click here for our review of the sequel, Point