Reviews of Neuromancer (1984)
Review by brunop (2008-07-22)
I've read this book because it's The Classic of cyberpunk. I thought it would be a great read. But I was wrong. Sure, the ideas of the author, dating back to 1984, are great, but the story is really hard to follow. The style of the author is confusing and sleep inducing. I had a really hard time understanding what was going on at any moment in the book. Because of his use of "he" and "she", I was never really sure of who was talking, who was answering, who was doing what. And there is no explanation about anything. He introduces a lot of new concept, but only by name. He doesn't explain them. Some are quite obvious, but others are more obscure.
It's one of the only book I've read that made me sleep. I mean really sleep. I had troubles keeping my eyes open while reading. By the end of the rather short 300 pages, I still had trouble remembering who was who, and what they were doing. And it's not because there's a lot of characters. But everything is just so vague that it is hard to se the difference between each character.
I cannot recommend this book to you. It may be the story that began the cyberpunk genre, but that doesn't mean it's a great read.
(This review refers to the 1984 version titled “Neuromancer”)
Review by kadambi (2006-04-09)
Economical. Gibson's style of writing seems very economical yet descriptive. It is quite easy to see why the book is highly regarded.
Neuromancer is the story of an AI, its quest to free itself. It is about how it manipulates various characters to achieve its goal.
Pathbreaking, sophisticated and dark, Neuromancer is an incerdible ride into the dystopian future.
Review by computermonkey (2005-09-08)
The Cyberpunk bible. After reading this it's very easy to see the influence it has had on movies and pop/tech culture in recent years. The Matrix, Ghost in the Shell and others all come to mind.
Gibson writing is amazingly detailed. Almost too much in fact. It's hard to visualize what's going on. I can't even imagine what it would be like reading this in 1984 when it was released.
That being said, it is still an amazing read that is very well written. This book screams cool.
Review by peacehammer (2004-09-12)
Before the Matrix there was Neuromancer. It blows my mind that this book was written on a manual typewriter before most people had even heard of personal computers (much less the Internet). Gibson's style is simultaneously dense and poetic. I occasionally have to reread passages to make sure I know what he's talking about. But his style works so well with the subject I wouldn't have it any other way. A fantastic novel that I'm reading for the third time right now.
Review by Corleone (2004-01-26)
There is so much detail and unbelievable information and imagination in this that it takes at least two readings to comprehend it all. I love this world, though the exact workings of it are still a mystery to me... The stark and cold atmosphere is perfect and uncomfortable, which suits the story exactly. I love the views Gibson exhibits of the future, which seems remarkable in the age of the Internet.
Review by Avarith (2003-07-24)
I love this book. I think I might have found a possible new favorite genre. His writing was spare, but almost poetic at times. The characters were gritty, hard, perfect denizens of the possible future he's constructed. Gibson is great at extending current social trends into the future, and treats that future (in his books) as simply the reality - just as a modern writer writing of modern things would treat television as just something that's there, so does Gibson treat his techno-creations. Some parts, though, were confusing. Sometimes, the novel did require greater description. There were several passages I read, where the end left me with a simple "Huh?" - and re-reads weren't helping. Still and all, this book was a gorgeous read. 9/10
Review by rmaddock (2003-03-11)
At a time not long after Bill Gates was proclaiming that no one would need more than 640k for their computers, William Gibson writes about an exciting future where cyber cowboys jack into virtual reality evading lethal counter measures, stealing information for money and avoiding the near omnipotent AIs.
A world where everything is for sale from black market body pieces to miltary cybernetics.
I found Gibson a joy to read, avoiding the common writing pitfalls where more words is somehow percieved as more immersive. He achievs this through the clever use of word associations and his own cyber-punk jargon.
Neuromancer isnt everones cup of tea, its not a sci-fi epic, or a Shakespearian tragedy, but pretention aside its a bloody enjoyable read.