I'd already read Iron Sunrise, which is the sequel to this, and I loved it. I had great expectations of this. It didn't disappoint, but I had a similar experience to reading Peter F. Hamilton's Mindstar trilogy, which I happened to read in reverse order: there's a sense of slight disappointment since they'd had worked so much better in the right order. Oh, well. My fault. This was still great.
There's more (less? this is the first book...) of Martin, Rachel and Herman. Rachel gets to be cooler here, I think, but the girl (I forget her name) made a better protagonist than Martin. Plus, the Remastered from Iron Sunrise were just so much scarier than the far-more-abstract Festival here.