Altered Carbon

The First Takeshi Kovacs Novel

Altered Carbon UK PaperbackFour hundred years from now mankind is strung out across a region of interstellar space inherited from an ancient civilization discovered on Mars. The colonies are linked together by the occasional sublight colony ship voyages and hyperspatial data-casting. Human consciousness is digitally freighted between the stars and downloaded into bodies as a matter of course.

But some things never change. So when ex-envoy, now-convict Takeshi Kovacs has his consciousness and skills downloaded into the body of a nicotine-addicted ex-thug and presented with a catch-22 offer, he really shouldn’t be surprised. Contracted by a billionaire to discover who murdered his last body, Kovacs is drawn into a terrifying conspiracy that stretches across known space and to the very top of society.

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More Takeshi Kovacs Novels

2. Broken Angels (2003)
3. Woken Furies (2005)

Stand-Alone Novels

1. Market Forces (2004)
2. Black Man / Thirteen (2007)

Books in the A Land Fit For Heroes Series:

1. The Steel Remains (2008)
2. The Cold Commands (2011)
3. The Dark Defiles (2014)

Omnibus Editions:

O. The Complete SF Collection (2013)

Book Details:

UK / ANZ Print Edition
Publisher: Gollancz / Hachette Australia
Date: Feb 2002 (Current Edtn Sep 2008)
ISBN: 9780575081246
Format: Paperback
R.R.P.: £8.99 / $AUS19.99

North American Print Edition
Publisher: Del Rey
Date: Mar 2003
ISBN: 9780345457684
Format: Paperback
R.R.P.: US$16.99 / CAN$14.99

Publisher: Gollancz (UK) / Del Rey (US)
Date: December 2008 / Jan 2003
ISBN: 9780575085688 / 9780345457707

Publisher: Tantor Media (US)
Date: Jan 2005

German Edition
Publisher: Heyne Verlag (Das Unsterblichkeitsprogramm)

French Edition
Publisher: Bragelonne (Carbone Modifié)

Cover Gallery

Altered Carbon US Trade PaperbackAltered Carbon US Mass Market PaperbackAltered Carbon UK hardbackAltered Carbon UK paperbackAltered Carbon UK PaperbackAltered Carbon US Ltd Edtn HardcoverAltered Carbon French PaperbackAltered Carbon French PaperbackAltered Carbon German PaperbackAltered CarbonAltered Carbon US audiobook

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Buying Info:

UK Print & Ebook | Book Depository | Waterstones | WHSmith

North American Print & Ebook | | |

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Discuss and Review Altered Carbon at

Altered Carbon (Takeshi Kovacs, #1)

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Reviews and Plaudits:

“A must-read for anybody who’s interested in post-humanism, politics, cyberpunk or the intersection of the science fiction and detective genres … If you’re ready to be kicked in the forehead by post-cyberpunk violence and subversion, then you owe it to yourself to hunt down a copy of Altered Carbon.”
– Charlie Jane Anders,

“The body count is high, the gadgetry pure genius, the sex scenes deliriously overwrought, and the worn cynicism thoroughly distasteful: a welcome return to cyberpunk’s badass roots.”
Kirkus Reviews

Altered Carbon is a truly remarkable debut. Brash and violent, highly intelligent and highly entertaining. One really couldn’t ask for more. Morgan bounds on to the stage with this debut performance and totally astounds his audience. Definitely an author to watch, Altered Carbon comes with my highest recommendation.”
– John Berlyne, SFRevu

Altered Carbon is an exciting SF/crime hybrid, with an intricate (but always plausible) plot, a powerful noir atmosphere, and enough explosive action to satisfy the most die-hard thriller fan. It’s also an extremely well-crafted piece of fiction.”
– Victoria Strauss,

“This is a first novel so exciting, so addictive and so bone-crunchingly in your face that it beggars the need for such virtual reality as it occasionally employs.”
– Stuart Carter, Infinity Plus

“a thoughtful, morally complex mystery novel that effectively uses the futuristic setting and ideals as a device to keep the reader guessing and connected to the characters. Richard K. Morgan earned his reputation with Altered Carbon, and a well deserved reputation it is.”
– Aidan Moher, A Dribble of Ink

“a genre-breaking, hardboiled noir murder mystery, with body-swap identity crises and plenty of ingenious gadgetry that’s used, and abused, in the service of mass slaughter and cyberpunk adventure.”
– Christopher Geary, The Zone

“In Takeshi Kovacs we have a genuine anti-hero – a guy who manages to leave a trail of devastation in his wake whatever his good intentions, and who does not mind flouting the law as he does it. The noir thriller within the pages is tautly written and gives great payback.”
– Amanda Rutter, for Walker of Worlds

“a whirlwind made up of equal parts post-modern cyberpunk and mystery … Altered Carbon is an excellent novel”
– John DeNardo, SF Signal

Altered Carbon is a hip, smart, and thoroughly nasty package. It’s an engrossing read”
– Simon Petrie, Andromeda Spaceways

“From the gritty opening scene, Morgan drags the reader into the narrative with power and precision … There are a certain class of books that really are direct competitors with movies, and this is one of them. It unfolds in your mind as fast as you can read it and that’s as fast as you can read.”
– Rick Kleffel, The Agony Column

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12 responses to “Altered Carbon”

  1. Social Networking and Richard K. Morgan’s Altered Carbon Series « TLkirsten's Learning Chrysalid

    […] consciousness can be downloaded into a different body. This is the stuff of many a sci fi tale. In Richard K. Morgan’s Altered Carbon series, this take idea takes on a dark edge in a world that cares little for human life, and where, when […]

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    […] is my world… there’s a good chance he will come back.  After all if you’ve read the book Altered Carbon you know I almost have to…   « Life in the Gap LikeBe the first to […]

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    […] story but rather I would love to do a sci-fi cyberpunk/noir series in the vien of Richard Morgan's Altered Carbon and his other Takeshi Kovacs […]

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    […] Morgan is perhaps better known as the author of Altered Carbon, which apparently takes the templates provide by the Cyberpunk revolution and drags them even […]

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    […] Morgan pisać potrafi i napisał całkiem niezłe dzieło – Modyfikowany Węgiel, które w 2003 roku otrzymało nawet nagrodę im. Philipa K. Dicka. Brytyjczyk po mistrzowsku […]

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    […] brings myth to the strip-malls and freeways of the American road-trip.  Richard K Morgan creates Noir Sci-fi and an Epic Fantasy (which may actually be a Sci-Fi) complete with magical swords, non-human […]

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    […] less the conclusion Bruce Sterling reached, and also reminded me of Richard K. Morgan’s book Altered Carbon: …what religion cannot guarantee technology has already delivered; when your consciousness […]

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