For those of you who aren’t familiar with the Continuing Time, it’s an impressively gonzo science fiction setting (most of the published tales being set in the latter part of the 21st century) featuring cyborgs, genetic engineering, artificial intelligences, audacious capers, telepaths, mystic martial arts, time travel, aliens, and gods, all of which fit together in a coherent narrative, along with the only form of cinematic hacking (as in Neuromancer) I’ve ever seen in fiction that I found remotely believable. While the internal chronology goes Emerald Eyes, The Long Run, The Last Dancer, The Big Boost, I would recommend reading The Long Run or The Last Dancer first— Emerald Eyes is a bit depressing.
Re-reading the earlier books to refresh my memory before picking up The Big Boost has been keeping me up late this past week; they’re all page-turners. (Virtual page-turners, anyway; I’m using Aldiko to read them on my Android phone.)
The Big Boost gives us the return of Trent the Uncatchable, the greatest thief in the Solar System. After the events of The Last Dancer he is, in the eyes of the Unification that governs Earth, the most wanted criminal ever. And after laying low in the asteroid belt for several years, he’s decided it’s time for him to come back home.
With Trent in the spotlight, we naturally get a caper story: a good mix of drama and humor, leading up to a confrontation between Trent and his nemesis, Elite Commissioner Vance, whom Trent humiliated in The Long Run.
The Big Boost has the scene that I’ve quoted for many of you, with characters eschewing a game of Good Cop/Bad Cop for a game of Bad Cop/Anti-Christ. (“That was the worst Bad Cop/Antichrist routine I ever saw.” “Well, the important thing is that we enjoyed ourselves.”)