Monday, 4 August 2014

Neuromancer by William Gibson

I first read Neuromancer years ago, and I have to say that when I picked it up again this time, not a single bit of it had stuck with me. I didn't even have that eerie feeling I often get when rereading that I'd read that exact line before.

But it's a classic of the genre. The one book group I belong to was reading it this month. So I took the book up to the bathroom and left it there for the first two weeks of the month, reading 5-10 pages at a time. Would taking the time to let small chunks seep into my memory make it have more of an impact?

I feel like I remember more of Neuromancer this time, but I still feel almost no emotional attachment to the book. It's been suggested it's because the book is too "arty" for readers who like hard SF. But I'm not the hugest fan of very hard SF, and tend to like books that take risks, if they pull it off.

It's been suggested people don't like it because they don't get noir and don't see how it draws on noir tropes. But I love noir. And I can see where he's drawing on the tropes, but he cloaks it all in such mystery that I can't even tell there's been a mystery until after the mystery has been revealed.

(And I'm presently playing in a Shadowrun game, fergoodness' sake, so it's not like cyberpunk is alien to me.)

It's just too opaque for me, too distant, too unemotional, too fascinated with its own universe to take the time to let me inside.

Maybe it's me. But I've given it a chance twice, and while I didn't hate it either time, and can remember more of it now than I did before, there's no fond place in my brain for this book.

So, Case and Molly, happy running. I probably won't be coming back on the trip with you again.

Booklinks:

I read this book as part of an attempt to read all the Hugo Nominees

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