This book is lower key than Gibson's Neuromancer series, which created cyberpunk, but yet as well-written, creative, and perhaps more compelling because in the end, it becomes more Tom Clancy than Tom Clancy about current events. Gibson avoids moralizing and trusts his audience to "get it." When we finally figure out the heroes and the villains, we are left praying that there still exists Americans like that. A bit more Le Carre and Greene than Clancy, hard care techophiles bear with it, the high tech war of spies unfolds and then builds. For hard core literati, no fears, the tech never overwhelms the story.
Art, as always, remains a major motif, and his take on virtual reality (the emerging locative art set) as the potential to be cluttered with a thousand uninteresting visions from mediocre artists is a strong contrast to the exuberant geekiness in Vinge's equally brilliant Rainbow's End. His bon mots on music are breathtaking.
The narration is good, not outstanding, but the book is so good, heck I could probably read it out loud and people would still enjoy it.
Do not pick this one up if you are seeking a story that follows the Gibson of the past century because this is not him...
Despite that glaring fact the story is, without putting too fine a point on the departure from genre, a very easy to listen to romp through classic spydom without the violence, car chases, secret pen guns or... Well... Any of the gadgets that make spies cool.
In the end if you give this book a chance you will find an easy to digest story about people you just cannot really bring yourself to identify with or care about.
I gave it 4 Stars because it is a proper story that was well executed by the narrator and despite its lack of depth retains its entertainment value. If it had not cost me an Audible Credit I might have given it five stars... Maybe...
This book kept me just interested enough to then disappoint me whenever the story seemed to build into something riveting only to fall flat on its face with convoluted plot lines and unnecessary, bloated wording.
Good premise, bad execution.
I'm in complete agreement with Cindy. Nowhere in the first three plus hours have I recognized anything remotely akin to a plot. From the very first sentence, I've been trying to get involved with someone in this dis-jointed amalgam of characters and have been thwarted at each chapters end. This may be the worst piece of writing I have ever laid down good money for. Just glad to see SOMEONE can put a value on it ! Though I hasten to think some people have too much spare reading time on their hands.
This is certainly not Gibson at his best. I found the story boring, really. It meandered all over the place and eventually went nowhere of importance. The ending was a huge let down. I felt it was a waste of time and money.
And what the hell is with audio directors these days? This is the second book I've listened to in the past two months that had mispronunciations all over the place. I can't totally fault the narrator as they're just actors who are reading the text of someone else and may not be familiar with all the words/terms. So all I can say is that the director must've not actually been there in the studio when it was recorded.
I mean, who in the last 20 years would not know that Adidas should be pronounced "uh-DEED-uhs" and not "AHH-deed-dahs"?
Skip this one and find something more intriguing to spend your time with.
Long time listener - very eclectic mixture of reads. Never bored. Glad I started this way to read books over a decade ago.
There are multiple characters and scenarios going on in the start of this book. At first it is a bit difficult to discern all the weird happenings and there relationship to each other. Yet, the author slowly brings all of the characters closer and closer together until they all meet, in a way near the end. If anything the end is kind of anticlimactic considering the trouble the author goes to to weave his sterling web.