Woken Furies by Richard K. Morgan (Del Rey, 2005); audiobook read by William Dufris (Tantor Audio, 2006) Morgan’s great anti-hero and brutish cyberpunk imaginings are lessened here by wallowing writerly indulgence, gratuitous, cringeworthy sex scenes and a narrator who guesses at pronunciations and whose hard-boiled American take on Takeshi Kovacs entirely disregards the character’s Japanese / Eastern European ethnicity.
Broken Angels by Richard Morgan (Victor Gollancz, 2003); audiobook read by Todd McLaren (Tantor, 2015) Reprising antihero Takeshi Kovacs, Morgan expands upon his racially diverse though otherwise cynical SF future beyond cyberpunk. More world-building than story, Broken Angels suffers from awkwardly explicit sex scenes and—in audiobook form—from McLaren’s faux-jaded characterisation of Kovacs and jarring mispronunciations.
Altered Carbon by Richard Morgan (Gollancz, 2002) Beyond the action/intrigue of its no-holds-barred cyberpunk murder mystery, Richard Morgan’s debut novel packs a hefty SF punch by immersing the reader in a cynical, comprehensively envisaged future of haves and have-nots; of memory storage, body downloads and associated abuses and liberties.
Black Man by Richard Morgan (Gollancz, 2007) Anybody looking for the written equivalent of Blade Runner should try the immersive, unromanticised near-future science fiction of Richard Morgan. Black Man (or, rebranded with North American irony, Thirteen) is a stark, at times gruesome classic, pitting genetic manipulation against human prejudice.
The Dark Defiles by Richard Morgan (Gollancz, 2014) Richard Morgan made his name writing gritty SF, then dragged the fantasy novel kicking and screaming from within its feel-good boundaries. Unapologetically dark, spurning escapism, this book clinches his genre-breaking trilogy, Morgan showing no compunction at leaving Tolkien and Company for dead.