Maxim Jakubowski's January 2015 Book of the Month.
No one writes better about the future than William Gibson. He almost single-handedly created the 'cyberpunk' genre in which a dizzying noir atmosphere cloaked the unknown beneath a veil of technology gone mad but also created unforgettable characters who literally breathed blood, electronics and metal. His massive new novel returns to the genre with a parallel plot taking place in two separate futures until they converge to form a hardboiled investigation that grips the neurones. A tough but rewarding read in which unknown environments have to be deciphered piece by puzzling piece but which builds into a powerful conspiracy with just that right touch of alienness to keep you disorientated. If these are our futures, they both attract and repel but you can't take your eye off the page as you want to know what comes next. Science fiction comes alive!
He invented cyberpunk in the amazing Neuromancer, he taught us the possibilities of our own present in the incredible Spook Country and now William Gibson is playing with time. Two futures, one further from our present than the other, so it’s a dual-time novel but like no other. The further future interacts with the closer one and uses it like a game. And the people there think the further future is the game. And it hasn’t even begun to get confusing yet. As with all his work, if you let yourself go with its flow it will take you to some amazing places. It is sensational in all senses of the word. Extremely fast moving, short chapters alternating back and forth between the two principal characters, one in each time, it really gives a lot to think about, and a lot to enjoy.
The Peripheral by William Gibson is a thrilling new novel about two intertwined futures, from the bestselling author of Neuromancer. Flynne Fisher lives down a country road, in a rural near-future America where jobs are scarce, unless you count illegal drug manufacture, which she's keen to avoid. Her brother Burton lives, or tries to, on money from the Veterans Association, in compensation for neurological damage suffered in a Marines elite unit. Flynne earns what she can by assembling product at the local 3D printshop. She used to make more as a combat scout in an online game, playing for a rich man, but she's had to let the shooter games go. Wilf Netherton lives in London, seventy-some years later, on the far side of decades of slow-motion apocalypse. Things are pretty good now, for the haves, and there aren't many have-nots left. Wilf, a high-powered publicist and celebrity-minder, fancies himself as a romantic misfit in a society where reaching into the past is just another hobby. Burton's been moonlighting online, secretly working security in some game prototype, a virtual world that looks vaguely like London, but a lot weirder. He's got his sister taking over shifts, promised her the game's not a shooter. Still, the crime Flynne witnesses there is plenty bad. Flynne and Wilf are about to meet one another. Her world will be altered utterly, irrevocably, and Wilf's, for all its decadence and power, will learn that some of these third-world types from the past can be badass. According to the Guardian, in terms of influence Gibson is 'probably the most important novelist of the past two decades'. The Peripheral, which marks a return to the futurism of Neuromancer, will be adored by Gibson readers and will also appeal to fans of Ender's Game, Looper and Source Code. William Gibson's first novel Neuromancer sold more than six million copies worldwide. Count Zero and Mona Lisa Overdrive completed his first trilogy. He has since written six further novels, moving gradually away from science fiction and futuristic work, instead writing about the strange contemporary world we inhabit. His most recent novels are Pattern Recognition, Spook Country and Zero History, his non-fiction collection, Distrust That Particular Flavor, compiles assorted writings and journalism from across his career.
'Spectacular, a piece of trenchant, far-future speculation that features all the eyeball kicks of Neuromancer and all the maturity and sly wit of Spook Country. It's brilliant.'
- Cory Doctorow
Publication date: 20/11/2014
Publisher: Viking an imprint of Penguin Books Ltd
|Publication date:||20th November 2014|
|Publisher:||Viking an imprint of Penguin Books Ltd|
William Gibson was born in the United States in 1948. In 1972 he moved to Vancouver, Canada, after four years spent in Toronto. He is married with two children. William Gibson's first novel Neuromancer sold more than six million copies worldwide. Count Zero and Mona Lisa Overdrive completed his first trilogy. He has since written six further novels, moving gradually away from science fiction and futuristic work, instead writing about the strange contemporary world we inhabit. His most recent novels include Pattern Recognition, Spook Country and Zero History, his non-fiction collection, Distrust That Particular Flavor, compiles assorted writings and journalism ...More About William Gibson