I love books that push genre boundaries, especially those that try to skirt the edges of both science-fiction and fantasy. I’ve only run across a handful of titles that attempt such a daring feat, but they are usually entertaining to say the least. ECKO RISING, the debut novel from Danie Ware, is by far one of the best sci-fi/fantasy hybrids that I’ve ever read.
If you are not familiar with ECKO RISING, here is the plot synopsis courtesy of Titan Books:
In a futuristic London where technological body modification is the norm, Ecko stands alone as a testament to the extreme capabilities of his society. Driven half mad by the systems running his body, Ecko is a criminal for hire. No job is too dangerous or insane.
When a mission goes wrong and Ecko finds himself catapulted across dimensions into a peaceful and unadvanced society living in fear of ‘magic’, he must confront his own perceptions of reality and his place within it.
A thrilling debut, Ecko Rising explores the massive range of the sci-fi and fantasy genres, and the possible implications of pitting them against one another. Author Danie Ware creates an immersive and richly imagined world that readers will be eager to explore in the first book in this exciting new trilogy.
I always find it fascinating to see an author’s take on world-blending; now granted, it’s not a concept that is seen very often, but the results are almost always entertaining. Combining science-fiction and fantasy and making it believable is not an easy task, and it is one that I would imagine many genre authors would find too daunting to undertake. But Ware seems to pull it off with ease.
ECKO RISING is written very well and flows like a roaring river. Ware has a subtle writing style that lulls the reader into a false sense of security but then whips them straight into the story without warning. This allows for complete immersion into Ecko’s world(s) and therefore an enjoyable reading experience.
The characters in the book are both likable (in some cases) and believable, while the world-building is detailed and authentic. I found myself wondering who or what Ware’s influences were when constructing some elaborate landscapes; they are unique, but also comfortably familiar. This is a nice aspect, as it does not require the reader to ‘learn’ a new atlas of lands.
ECKO RISING is a definite win for me and I highly recommend giving it a look. It is the first book in a trilogy, so you will want to watch for the next two for sure. ECKO RISING is available now in a variety of formats.