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Thursday, November 26, 2009

Ghost in the Shell SAC. Revenge Of The Cold Machines. Junichi Fujisaku. Dark Horse Press (2006)

Three short stories set in a future , post World War III Japan where cybernetics are common and prosthetic body enhancements are frequent. The three stories are concerned with the activities of Public Security Section 9, an anti-terrorist group that deals with cybernetic related terrorist threats and activities. The first story is about a plot to kill the leader of Section 9, the second is about and incident that one of Section 9, Artificial Intelligence equipped mobile tanks, a Tachikoma has, the final story is about an assault on a leading cybernetics company. The three stories are all very tightly woven and complete in themselves, they are also ultimately all tied into a bigger plot. The writing is sharp, clear, informative and brings the cast and context to life.
The stories delve further into the context and cast from the Ghost in the Shell continuity created by Shrrow Masamune, specifically the animated series, Ghost in the Shell "Stand Alone Complex". Junichi Fujisaku, who is a writer on the series, develops these stories with enough inherent information that they can be read without any prior knowledge of any of the continuity. The stories are enjoyably laced with political intrigue as the background in which Section 9 operate is made clear. This gives a nice extra dimension to the actions and decisions of the cast and gives weight to the plot.
The stories are well structured, the reveals are nicely paced and the action is fast and enjoyable with a large and lively cast. Anyone interested in science fiction would enjoy these stories, be they fans of the Ghost in the Shell continuity or not, they are excellent.

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