Company Town

Madeline Ashby
Company Town Cover

Company Town


Mystery combined with a cybernetic future world

Company Town is a city-sized oil rig off the coast of the Canadian Maritimes, owned by the wealthy and powerful Lynch family empire. Like all cities, its populace exist in a multitude of social and economic strata. In a world where bioengineered enhancements are commonplace and expected, the rebellious Hwa is the last fully-organic holdout; for which she has compensated by becoming an expert in fighting and bodyguarding -- a way to maintain her fierce but precarious independence. Then the Lynch CEO and patriarch hires her to protect his young son, the heir, from mysterious death threats.

I started reading this book, and was engrossed in it, when I began to get an increasingly intense sense of déjà vu--culminating, at the end of the second chapter, in the realization that I had indeed read some of it before, as the story "Come From Away" in the anthology Upgraded, edited by Neil Clarke. Which got me really enthused, because it was one of my Short Story nominees for the 2015 Hugos. I enjoyed the mystery combined with the depiction of a cybernetic future world, and I would definitely be interested in reading more adventures with this protagonist.