When Gravity Fails
is set in the 22nd century, in a very bad part of town called the budayeen, (in what city I never really worked out). The culture is predominantly arab and muslim, although don't expect purity and devoutness! Almost the entire population have implants that enable personality modification (moddies), and data addons such as languages and skills (daddies).
Marid Audran is a rarity in that he doesn't have any implants. He prefers to get his kicks the oldfashioned pills and booze way. Marid is about to get himself a job searching for a russian guys missing nephew, when a guy with a James Bond moddie shoots a hole in his new client. More murders follow, and Marid becomes involved in hunter for the killer. Unfortunately the local crime boss Friedlander Bey, is forcing Marid to do it on his terms, which means Marid has to go against his principles and get the latest experimental intracranial implants..
I thought it was a little unusual to find cyberpunk and muslims mixed in together, with all the drugs, alcohol, body modification and lgbt, it's actualy a very un-muslim backdrop. But I think it's the conflict of all those things that made it such an interesting setting.
The pace of the story was somehwat frustrating, the buildup was very slow, not that I wasn't involved, but it wasn't til around the middle of the book that I felt Marid really getting stuck into the middle of events. And then the plot really careened off at high speed until it hit a very abrupt ending. I'm going to have to check out the next in the series, as it was just the kind of ending that left me thinking 'huh. ...well whats he going to do now?'.