Burning Chrome – William Gibson

Having enjoyed the science fiction elements of Cloud Atlas, and not finding anything appealing on the “Books to read” shelf, I turned my attentions to Phil’s collection of William Gibson novels, and picked out Burning Chrome as one I’d not read before.

I’d not realised that it is a collection short stories, written by William Gibson (occasionally in collaboration with others) in the early years of his career. I’d also not realised – until I opened the book to start reading – that the first story is Johnny Mnemonic, the basis for the film of the same name starrring Keanu Reeves in a warm-up to his role in The Matrix.

An enjoyable collection, where you see William Gibson articulating concepts, scenarios and locations that are developed in his later novels. It strikes me that the stories are always told from the perpective of the underdog or the outsider – I can’t think of an occasion where we see Gibson’s vision of the future from the point of view of someone with power, or simply getting along with a “normal” humdrum life.

Hmmm. What next?

Buy it: Amazon link

Idoru – William Gibson

Another rollicking good read from William Gibson. I’m glad Phil’s bookshelves led me back to sci fi, and introduced me to this author.

The Amazon synopsis says it all really:

“Set in futuristic Tokyo, rebuilt after an earthquake, this is the story of a rock star who decides to marry a non-existent, virtual reality girl; the bemused American security consultant who has been sent to take care of him; and a teenage fan.”

Buy it: Amazon link

Virtual Light – William Gibson

Encouraged by Neuromancer, I selected another William Gibson SciFi from Phil’s shelf. More accessible than the first, but just as enjoyable, with similar David and Goliath story (this time about a snaffled pair of wrap-around shades that reveal more than Reactorlight Rapides TM do) giving another none-too-enticing glimpse of the Western world’s future.

Buy it: Amazon link

Neuromancer – William Gibson

I borrowed this from Phil’s bookshelf as a result of finishing Bookseller and having left Clapham Junction and the literary treasure-trove that is Battersea Public Library. Having not read and SciFi for a long time, it was a happy return and my first taste of William Gibson’s world; one that looms on the not-too-distant horizon. Although some of the Neuromancer-speak and terminology eluded me, I understood enough to get me through to the end of this Matrix-like tale of a criminal gang with X-Men-esque powers crossing paths, “swords” and computer skills with a shadowy elite.

Buy it: Amazon link