Hugo: Neuromancer (1985)

Neuromancer by William Gibson
Read January 12, 2010 – January 16, 2010

Premise: A “console cowboy,” a kickass assassin woman, a guy who is incredibly like Pusher from The X-Files, and the consciousness of a famous dead “console cowboy” captured in a bit of hardware are all hired by a mysterious man to do a mysterious job in a combination of cyberspace hacking, colonial space cavorting, and lots of drug use. It’s that cool. This novel, I might add, is sort of the definition of “cyberpunk” in and of itself.

Verdict: I had no clue what this book was going to be like. This was (amazingly) on the syllabus for one of my classes and I was very pleased to have a reason to buy and read it. This is the novel that coined the term “cyberspace” as well as (apparently) inspiring every single bit of The Matrix films (which we also had to watch for class.) The correlation to what we would call the internet is jacked directly into your head, you experience it as a physical place and it’s called *drumroll* the matrix. Yeah, no shit. There’s also a thing called a simstim which can allow you to experience actually simulated realistic environments instead of just the electronic networks of information. This book, let me tell you, was kickass. How has a book this old and this technologically based held up so well to the test of time? Search me, but it didn’t hit me wrong at all. I never once was like “wtf” about any of my usual turnoffs and there wasn’t anything that made me say “wow this is dated.” If anything, there were things that made me go “damn, this is amazing.” For those of you who enjoy The Matrix, there’s also a city named Zion, some plot-centric confrontation with screwy AI, and a kickass female in tight leather clothing.

Yeah, the movie people totally ripped it all off. But hey, rocks dun’it?

Read this book. READ IT.

You may also like