A new compilation of essays and articles from novelist William Gibson, offering listeners a privileged view into the mind of a writer whose thinking has shaped our culture.
©2012 William Gibson Enterprises Limited (P)2012 Tantor
"A provocative, surprising look at the lesser-known parts of a sci-fi superstar's writing career." (Kirkus)
This is a book of essays and speeches compiled from various sources, with Gibson's commentary from today's perspective. It's a fascinating journey into a complex mind that begins to reveal the source material for his novels. As a writer, I'm going to listen to it again (and again), with a notebook in hand. In the NY Times book review, Pagan Kennedy says, "Gibson's writing enters the bloodstream like a drug, producing a mild hallucinogenic effect that lasts for hours." Yes.
I was less satisfied with the narrator Robertson Dean. I felt that the text called for someone speaking more conversationally. Dean is orotund and begins to sound robotic. I don't know what Gibson himself sounds like, but I wanted it to be him reading and talking to me. Dean doesn't by any means ruin the experience (so get this book!), but it could have been so much more intimate an experience with Gibson himself.
I would have enjoyed hearing more.
The Art of Fielding
Gibson's description of his experience of Tokyo
No. It's episodic non-fiction without a unifying thread that might tie a documentary together.
Narrator Robertson Dean's voice and style is familiar from Gibson fiction titles he's performed. In general, I think it suits the material well, though in this non-fiction title, it's the writer himself he's portraying, and I think at times Dean comes off as more callow than I like to imagine Gibson being.
For fans of Gibson's fiction, this collection of short, non-fiction work gives a worthwhile look behind the scenes at the places and impressions that start his creative engine running. As it is more nearly journalism than anything else, it lacks the depth and startling cognitive associations that I much admire in his fiction. If you are new to Gibson, this is not the place to start. Better to listen to Neuromancer from the vanguard of cyberpunk, or Pattern Recognition for an all too plausible GIbsonian near-future.
Some of Gibson's essays are insightful, and Robertson Dean's masterful reading makes this audiobook a pleasure to listen to.
Unfortunately, however, I cannot recommend that you spend a credit on this audiobook, for one simple reason: Audible.com's client contains no chapter titles.
This book is the poster child for missing chapter titles. Each "chapter" is actually a short essay, reprinted from some other source, such as the forward of a published book, or some past edition of a magazine.
In Audible's client, all we get is "Chapter 1," "Chapter 2," etc., but we really need chapter titles in order to be able to navigate through this volume.
Come on, Audible.com, it's 2016. When are we going to get textual chapter titles in our audiobooks? 2017? 2018?
Dead-tree publishers would never dream of abandoning an author's chapter titles when printing a book. I see no reason whatever why Audible.com's audiobooks meed to abandon chapter titles.
This is a collection of essays that left me flat.
I will listen to the novels--William Gibson is a great novelist, but this writing wasn't compelling.
Yes. These are great snapshots, not only of the creative process, but a good look into Gibson's unique perceptions - he is not so much hard-sci-fi as he is social-sci. As his work matured he became more aware of the science around him and the social consequences thereof.
Gibson himself - a fascinating, humble man.
His admitting that he new very little of the cutting edge technology and that his work was more speculative - he look at human behavior in the advent of this technology
Read it! if you love Gibson, or if you want a fresh perspective on the creator of a good sci-fi.
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