We are currently making improvements to the Audible site. In an effort to enhance the accessibility experience for our customers, we have created a page to more easily navigate the new experience, available at the web address www.audible.com/access .
Altered Carbon Audiobook

Altered Carbon

Regular Price:$31.49
  • Membership Details:
    • First book free with 30-day trial
    • $14.95/month thereafter for your choice of 1 new book each month
    • Cancel easily anytime
    • Exchange books you don't like
    • All selected books are yours to keep, even if you cancel
  • - or -

Audible Editor Reviews

Why we think it's Essential: Hardwire William Gibson into Dashiell Hammett and you get the unique universe that has earned Richard K. Morgan a legion of Audible fans. Todd McLaren wisely taps into the noir undercurrent for his narration - moving the action forward at a steady clip, letting the characterizations do the work, and treating high concepts like "sleeving" (downloading your personality into a new body) with a dead-pan legitimacy that makes them feel all the more real. —Ed Walloga

Publisher's Summary

In the 25th century, humankind has spread throughout the galaxy, monitored by the watchful eye of the U.N. While divisions in race, religion, and class still exist, advances in technology have redefined life itself. Now, assuming one can afford the expensive procedure, a person's consciousness can be stored in a cortical stack at the base of the brain and easily downloaded into a new body (or "sleeve") making death nothing more than a minor blip on a screen.

Ex-U.N. envoy Takeshi Kovacs has been killed before, but his last death was particularly painful. Dispatched 180 light-years from home, re-sleeved into a body in Bay City (formerly San Francisco, now with a rusted, dilapidated Golden Gate Bridge), Kovacs is thrown into the dark heart of a shady, far-reaching conspiracy that is vicious even by the standards of a society that treats "existence" as something that can be bought and sold. For Kovacs, the shell that blew a hole in his chest was only the beginning.

Altered Carbon is the first Takeshi Kovacs novel. Don't miss the sequels Broken Angels and Woken Furies.

©2003 Richard K. Morgan; (P)2005 Tantor Media, Inc.

What the Critics Say

"This far-future hard-boiled detective story is a lovely virtual-reality romp." (Booklist)
"Fast-paced, densely textured, impressive....Morgan's 25th-century Earth is convincing, while the questions he poses about how much Self is tied to body chemistry and how the rich believe themselves above the law are especially timely." (Publishers Weekly)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.1 (5354 )
5 star
 (2276)
4 star
 (1811)
3 star
 (819)
2 star
 (269)
1 star
 (179)
Overall
4.1 (3464 )
5 star
 (1612)
4 star
 (1080)
3 star
 (520)
2 star
 (149)
1 star
 (103)
Story
4.3 (3451 )
5 star
 (1694)
4 star
 (1166)
3 star
 (422)
2 star
 (115)
1 star
 (54)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Michael Sacramento, CA, United States 03-09-13
    Michael Sacramento, CA, United States 03-09-13 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
    8
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    24
    4
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Good, far future sci-fi"
    Where does Altered Carbon rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Altered Carbon is one of the better far-future sci-fi books that I've listened to.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The description of the characters, technology, and the action sequences are the highlights of this story.


    What does Todd McLaren bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    He reads at a fast pace. Additionally, he gives the main character a gravely nourish feel that helps shape the entire story.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    It would be too long to listen to in one setting, however, it was a great story.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Yuri sincero Fountain, CO USA 03-06-13
    Yuri sincero Fountain, CO USA 03-06-13 Member Since 2012

    Robert Elam

    HELPFUL VOTES
    0
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    15
    8
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    2
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Really good action sequences"
    What made the experience of listening to Altered Carbon the most enjoyable?

    Action from start to finish. Mind blowing sci-fi concept in a world of ultra violence.


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Takeshi Kovacs (of course)


    What does Todd McLaren bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    This guy is my favorite performer on audible so far. He enhances the story does not get in the way of the story. He becomes the story. Very talented guy.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    the sex scenes were fun :)


    Any additional comments?

    You won't be bored.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Doug D. Eigsti Kansas City, MO United States 02-14-13
    Doug D. Eigsti Kansas City, MO United States 02-14-13 Member Since 2013

    Increasing my ops tempo by allowing storytellers to whisper in my ear(buds).

    HELPFUL VOTES
    580
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    298
    280
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    45
    119
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Cyberpunk Noir"

    I first encountered the print version of Richard Morgan’s Takeshi Kovacs novels in 2005 with this book. I had long been a fan of John Varley and his exploration of the effects on society of memory recording and cloning. The combination of which imparts upon the practitioner a sort of pseudo-immortality. I thought that Varley might have the last word on the concept until I read ALTERED CARBON. Morgan takes the idea to a level previously undreamed of. The realm occupied by Takeshi Kovacs is a gritty as a Dashiell Hammet mystery and a action packed as a James Bond movie, but with more witty banter than either. The world that Morgan has created is very different than anything we know, but somehow we can relate to it. The people have been changed from who we are and their situations so foreign that one might think that no relevance could be found, but somehow we can empathize. This is a world that you will live in and think of as real, but will be thankful that you don’t have to live there. We wouldn’t last a day in Takeshi Kovacs shoes.

    Listening to Todd McLaren perform ALTERED CARBON made me appreciate it even more. He adds such great voice to each and every character that this great book becomes unexpectedly even more amazing. Each of the book’s characters come alive through McLaren’s voice.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 02-11-13

    I draw things and then build them.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    13
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    13
    5
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    1
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Has a noir feel without the unlikable characters."
    If you could sum up Altered Carbon in three words, what would they be?

    Adult scifi mystery. (three-ish)


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    There is a pretty clear protagonist in Takeshi Kovacs so that one is easy. Mrs. Bancroft's character was juicy simply for contributing one of the hottest sex scenes I've come across in a while.


    Which character – as performed by Todd McLaren – was your favorite?

    It wouldn't be easy to pinpoint a favorite voice from McLaren. He does a fantastic job of clearly delineating the character voices.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Would have loved to given the time.


    Any additional comments?

    Listen to the book before the film gets made. Who knows how an adaptation will turn out.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Steven San Rafael, CA, United States 02-11-13
    Steven San Rafael, CA, United States 02-11-13 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    8
    2
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Just a great ride"
    Would you listen to Altered Carbon again? Why?

    No. But only because I read the book a while back, and then bought it on audio out of curiosity. So I think twice is enough. But fabulously creative. The audio version was well done. The reader had a nice feel for the mood of the book, which is an odd Micky Spillane with action on steroids - in the future. Really fun.


    Any additional comments?

    This is not a PG book - if you don't like swearing and sex and violence you should stick to "murder she wrote".

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Raven Blackwood Los Gatos, CA 01-09-13
    Raven Blackwood Los Gatos, CA 01-09-13 Member Since 2011

    Everyday is Halloween

    HELPFUL VOTES
    1
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    167
    3
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A better ride than 1990's Total Recall"
    Would you consider the audio edition of Altered Carbon to be better than the print version?

    No. Print is always better but in our busy world that's always on the go - audio is a must have


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Altered Carbon?

    Kovacs breaking out of the 'Clinic' with a severed head in his hands


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The first impression we get of the Hendrix hotel


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    Buckle your seat belt and PAY ATTENTION


    Any additional comments?

    We want MORE Kovacs!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jossi LONG BEACH, CA, United States 01-09-13
    Jossi LONG BEACH, CA, United States 01-09-13 Member Since 2017
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "One of the best Cyberpunk books out there"
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    If your into Scifi and Cyberpunk this is the book for you.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The picture that Richard Morgan paints of the future is very engaging and detailed.


    What does Todd McLaren bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    nothing


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sam 12-12-12
    Sam 12-12-12

    Sammy

    HELPFUL VOTES
    26
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    27
    15
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Morgan is altered gold for science fiction"

    Start with Altered Carbon and if you enjoy it keep going because all three books are work the time. Morgan has an interesting twist on what it is to be a human being.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ken Mercadante Bedford, TX United States 11-02-12
    Ken Mercadante Bedford, TX United States 11-02-12 Member Since 2011
    HELPFUL VOTES
    18
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    234
    44
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    4
    0
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "A Sci-Fi Noir"

    I'm always fascinated when I read an author's view of the future that's original, well-conceived, and completely plausible. The society and culture of this world are worth the visit, even if the characters are straight out of a Raymond Chandler hard-boiled detective novel. It's one of those books where the setting is integral to the story, and vice versa. You can't have one without the other.

    But despite what I would consider two-dimentional characters, the overall experience was good. I wouldn't give it my highest recommendation, but I would recommend it for Sci-Fi fans and detective fiction fans.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Peter Prince George, BC, Canada 10-21-12
    Peter Prince George, BC, Canada 10-21-12 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    81
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    49
    49
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    3
    3
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Worst narration - could not get past 30 mins."
    Would you try another book from Richard K. Morgan and/or Todd McLaren?

    RKM - Yes<br/>TM - No. Not in this format


    Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Todd McLaren?

    Dick Hill, Dennis Boutsikaris, John Lee,


    Any additional comments?

    I could not get past the lofty. fluffy British accent which is the same for different characters.<br/>Too bad, because good Sci Fi is hard to come by. Could not listen past 30 mins.<br/><br/>Likely a case of "It's not you,..It's me" as the book has a high average rating.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

Report Inappropriate Content

If you find this review inappropriate and think it should be removed from our site, let us know. This report will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.

Cancel

Thank you.

Your report has been received. It will be reviewed by Audible and we will take appropriate action.