There are four (4) books in the "Lords of the Diamond" series, all of which are not only entertaining, but also have a buried commentary on possible future civilization, penal systems, and the human condition in general. This is the second of the series. As such, while it can be read as a stand-alone, it is much more enjoyable when all four books are read as a series and in order.
Though the series is now 20 years old, and not written in the style of modern science fiction, it is still enjoyable for all age brackets. For those of us who are 'older' fans, the style and content reflect the science fiction we grew up reading. As such, fans of 'cyber punk' and modern themes may not enjoy it, but it is still worthy of reading and as a reflection of how the genre has changed since the original days of "Astounding" and such magazines.