This was a different kind of story from the first book in the series. Altered Carbon made me feel like Raymond Chandler had risen from the grave to write sci-fi. The world of the book was futuristic sci-fi, but the tone of the book was pure hard-boiled detective murder mystery noir. This one is more hard sci-fi I think, though I can't claim to be totally conversant in the subtle distinctions of science fiction sub-categories. So, while the first book was more my kind of thing, this was also excellent. The story and characters were compelling, and the philosophical implications of the tech were explored even more deeply than in the first book. A good read for sure. The end of the book, where our hero breaks down elements of the story in conversation with the girl goes back to the first genre again though, and is pure noir. You've seen similar scenes at the end of Chandler or Hammett.