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The Electric Church by Jeff Somers

I’m not sure where I picked up the recommendation for this book, but it has been sitting on my Kobo for about six months and I finally decided to give it a read. Actually, I read the first chapter a few months ago, and it’s been haunting me ever since. I needed to know what happens next so that’s what prompted me to finish it up.

The Electric Church is a noir/cyberpunk action novel set in the distant future when civilization has all but been destroyed. The world consists of people from three subsects:

-The SSF: the abusive, corrupt police force

-The Monks: mysterious cyborgs who preach about an everlasting dream of peace

-The regular folk: everyone is a criminal because there is no economy and being twenty-seven is considered old

This is the type of book that would make a fantastic movie, although it would probably have been better if made in the 80’s. The story is dark and at times a bit depressing due to the similarities in this fictional future and our current present, but the author manages to weave an interesting plot around this mysterious Electric Church and our protagonist, a Gunner (assassin for hire) named Avery Cates.

After accidentally killing an SSF officer and finding himself on the run, Avery Cates gets an interesting proposition from the unlikeliest of people: kill the founder of The Electric Church. Cates and a band of criminals must equip and organize for an impossible task.

The book reads well, never slows down, and never feels cheap. So many times, when I read something sci-fi or cyberpunk, I feel like the author gives up or is afraid to show true consequences for the characters actions, but author Jeff Somers holds everyone accountable. I think this is where the noir and crime story really drive the plot and create this amazing world.

The book left me wanting more and thankfully, this is book one in a series. I’m probably going to bounce around to something else for a bit, but I’ll definitely be back to see what the world of The Electric Church is up to. Hopefully one day someone will option this for a series!

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