“The Electric Church” by Jeff Somers (Orbit, 2007)

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It’s the future.  A dystopian future where everything has pretty much gone to hell.  Our main character is Avery Cates.  Cates is not a good guy, in fact he’s a very bad man.  He’s a professional killer who goes through life assassinating people for what money he can get to survive.  While the police know about Cates, he’s very good at not getting caught.  He’s developed quite a reputation in fact.

Then there’s the Electric Church.  A religious group that is growing into a world-dominating force, gaining members and converts daily.  It’s members are known as Monks: cyborgs that still posses a human brain.  When one meets a Monk – a scary-looking thing with wires coming out of its head – one is immediately scared stiff, as the Monk calmly and pleasantly engages you in conversion, telling you the merits of the Electric Church and why you should join.

Cates is set-up and is captured by someone high up in the police authority.  He’s been caught for a reason: to be offered a deal, a hit.  In exchange for a large amount of money and his freedom, he is to assassinate the head of the Electric Church.  Why?  Because to convert someone to the Electric Church involves killing the person and taking their brain.  There’s a reason the Electric Church is growing so quickly, and eventually will simply take over the entire population, unless Cates can do something about it.

Written with the swagger and toughness of Blade Runner meets Stanley Kubrick, author Jeff Somers gives Cates a very unique and individual voice, setting the tone for The Electric Church, where anything can happen, and you need to keep reading to find out what’s next for Cates.  The story continues in The Digital Plague, The Eternal Prison, and the forthcoming The Terminal State.

If you liked this review and are interested in purchasing this book, click here.

Originally written on January 11th, 2010 ©Alex C. Telander.

Upcoming Book Reviews on BookBanter

Tomorrow I’ll begin working on putting Episode 24 together featuring my interview with S. G. Browne.  In the meantime, the following book reviews will be featured in the episode and or appearing on the BookBanter site.

Mage of None Magic

A Mage of None Magic by A. Christopher Drown

Nyphron Rising

Nyphron Rising by Michael J. Sullivan


Breathers by S. G. Browne

Electric Church

The Electric Church by Jeff Somers