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The Polity is under attack from a 'melded' AI entity with control of the lethal Jain techlogy, yet the attack seems to have coherence. When one of Erebus's wormships kills millions on the world of Klurhammon, a high-tech agricultural world of real tactical significance, agent Ian Cormac is sent to investigate, though he is secretly struggling to control a new ability human being should possess ...and beginning to question the motives of his AI masters. Further attacks and seemingly indiscriminate slaughter ensue, but only serve to bring some of the most dangerous individuals in the Polity into the war. Mr Crane, the indefatigable brass killing machine sets out for vengeance, while Orlandine, a vastly-augmented haiman who herself controls Jain techlogy, seeks a weapon of appalling power and finds allies from an ancient war. Meanwhile Mika, scientist and Dragon expert, is again kidnapped by that unfathomable alien entity and dragged into the heart of things: to wake the makers of Jain techlogy from their five-million-year slumber. But Erebus's attacks are t so indiscriminate, after all, and could very well herald the end of the Polity itself ...
Neal Asher was born in Billericay, Essex, and still lives nearby. His previous full-length novels are Gridlinked, The Skinner, The Line of Polity, Cowl, Brass Man, The Voyage of the Sable Keech, Polity Agent, Hilldiggers and Prador Moon.