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Neuromancer: the novel that defined cyberpunk

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Neuromancer by William Gibson
Neuromancer
William Gibson

William Gibson’s Neuromancer follows Case, a cyber criminal, through a future of powerful corporations, organ trade, genetic manipulation, and AI’s.  I think the novel is very interesting because up to this point I have not read a story that focused so much on cyberspace as an actual location.  It reminded me a lot of The Matrix films because the characters can actually interact within the system, and constructs can react as if human.  Like Fury, which I reviewed before, this novel has a gangster element to it, only with this story it is literal as Case works for Yakuzas and other underworld organizations to steal information and money.

There are parts of the story that I had a hard time following, especially in the beginning because the novel is heavy on the techno lingo surrounding Case’s trade.  I think there are aspects of the story that are very realistic or plausible; Japanese and Chinese technology figure highly in the plot, which sounds very close to the realities of today.  Also, two of the settings seem possible in the not too distant future; the Sprawl is a mega city on the Eastern sea board where the major cities of the East Coast have grown together; Freeside is an orbital station that is used as a resort and utilizes artificial light for a sun and rotational gravity to mimic systems on Earth.

I found the bio-technology mentioned in the novel the most fascinating.  Many characters could possibly classify as cyborgs with artificial limbs and implants.  Organs can be cloned and DNA revitalized to extend life.  One character has implants in her eyes that have digital read outs, as well as retractable razors implanted in her fingers for weapons.  Another character has implants in his organs to keep him from feeling the effects of drugs and alcohol.

Neuromancer is another good classic, or at least what I’d consider a classic, this time from the 80’s.  It is a story following a humanity becoming increasingly machine like, and AI’s that act more human.

If you enjoyed this book you may also like:

Cryptonomicon by Neal Stephenson Looking Glass by James R. Strickland Foundation by Isaac Asimov
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