Customer Reviews for

Neuromancer

Average Rating 4
( 360 )
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(197)

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(39)

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Most Helpful Favorable Review

9 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

The best kind of Sci-fi...imo

First off, I have to say that I was introduced to this novel by seeing, loving and researching The Matrix. I believe that the movie was just absolutely fantastic and amazing and any other adjective that I can think of (Just not at the moment). So, I picked up this book ...
First off, I have to say that I was introduced to this novel by seeing, loving and researching The Matrix. I believe that the movie was just absolutely fantastic and amazing and any other adjective that I can think of (Just not at the moment). So, I picked up this book from the library to see what it was all about.
It was pretty good basically sums it up. It had innovative settings and ideas and was generally awesome all around, but I just didn't like how sometimes certain technologies were never explained or were only barely mentioned. That's fine if it is just mentioned in passing, but when you linger on them and detail them without saying what they actually do, that kind of frustrated me.
Other than that, this book was what I like to call perfect. Everything about it was expertly crafted and written, and I highly recommend it to people interested in cyperbunk or just basic science fiction. I will be getting a copy for my own library.

posted by 148617 on November 17, 2008

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Most Helpful Critical Review

5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

A classic, by all accounts.

Neuromancer is by no means a long novel, it is under 400 pages composed of many short chapters; this does not mean it is anything like an "easy read."

Gibson consistently uses words that laymen, or persons-not-from-the-future, will not know in context. Reading this b...
Neuromancer is by no means a long novel, it is under 400 pages composed of many short chapters; this does not mean it is anything like an "easy read."

Gibson consistently uses words that laymen, or persons-not-from-the-future, will not know in context. Reading this book today the reader most likely feels as if he's missed some crucial background info, possibly a predecessor to the novel that he didn't know existed, but that is not the case with Neuromancer. Throughout the book Gibson weaves his tale while not divulging every detail or aspect about it. By giving the reader a very narrow realistic view, through the eyes of the protagonist, and using technical jargon not invented yet the reader is almost coerced to put himself into the story and try to unravel what is taking place. All of this can make for a confusing read to many readers- and the brilliance of Gibson's work can easily be overlooked.

I cannot recommend this book for everyone or even avid fans of science fiction. I can only say that I view it as an important book in the history of the science fiction genre and look at it as progenitor to other great masterpieces such as Snow Crash, by Neal Stephenson.

The story of Neuromancer is exciting but difficult to follow if it fails to grab your attention thoroughly. It won't be uncommon to get confused by the plot while reading Neuromancer but as long as you're attentive and keep reading any conflict should resolve itself as the story unfolds. If you're a science fiction fan looking for a challenging read and interested in a classic then you should pick up Neuromancer.

posted by JesseJ07 on April 20, 2009

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 17, 2008

    I Also Recommend:

    The best kind of Sci-fi...imo

    First off, I have to say that I was introduced to this novel by seeing, loving and researching The Matrix. I believe that the movie was just absolutely fantastic and amazing and any other adjective that I can think of (Just not at the moment). So, I picked up this book from the library to see what it was all about.<BR/>It was pretty good basically sums it up. It had innovative settings and ideas and was generally awesome all around, but I just didn't like how sometimes certain technologies were never explained or were only barely mentioned. That's fine if it is just mentioned in passing, but when you linger on them and detail them without saying what they actually do, that kind of frustrated me.<BR/>Other than that, this book was what I like to call perfect. Everything about it was expertly crafted and written, and I highly recommend it to people interested in cyperbunk or just basic science fiction. I will be getting a copy for my own library.

    9 out of 13 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 24, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Neuromancer: Escape into Cyberpunk's Roots.

    Neuromancer should be on the top of any Sci-fi fans must read list. What can you say about a book that launched an entire sub-genre of literature? With a breakthrough image of the future that we become a little closer to each day, William Gibson has inspired his fellow authors, futurists, and tech guru's since the day it was published. How many other works of art have reached a level of influence that in spawns a whole world with its own spinoffs in the works of Shadowrun?

    Read it. If you have ever dreamed of the future, wanted to see the internet you surf, or use technology to make yourself a better YOU Neuromancer contains all of that and more.

    8 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 9, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Excellent book

    For years I'd heard about what a great book this is, and how it was one of the defining novels of cyberpunk. Unfortunately, I was not interested in cyberpunk, or Neuromancer. Recently, however, my attitude changed, and decided to pick it up. I'm sorry I waited so long.

    Neuromancer is, almost 30 years after it was published, still refreshingly original. Having read it, I can see the influence it's had on other books and movies, yet it feels different from all of its "offspring." Now that I've finished it, what began as a passing interest, "to see what it's all about," has grown into a deep fascination, and I'm looking forward to picking up more of Gibson's books.

    6 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 20, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    A classic, by all accounts.

    Neuromancer is by no means a long novel, it is under 400 pages composed of many short chapters; this does not mean it is anything like an "easy read."

    Gibson consistently uses words that laymen, or persons-not-from-the-future, will not know in context. Reading this book today the reader most likely feels as if he's missed some crucial background info, possibly a predecessor to the novel that he didn't know existed, but that is not the case with Neuromancer. Throughout the book Gibson weaves his tale while not divulging every detail or aspect about it. By giving the reader a very narrow realistic view, through the eyes of the protagonist, and using technical jargon not invented yet the reader is almost coerced to put himself into the story and try to unravel what is taking place. All of this can make for a confusing read to many readers- and the brilliance of Gibson's work can easily be overlooked.

    I cannot recommend this book for everyone or even avid fans of science fiction. I can only say that I view it as an important book in the history of the science fiction genre and look at it as progenitor to other great masterpieces such as Snow Crash, by Neal Stephenson.

    The story of Neuromancer is exciting but difficult to follow if it fails to grab your attention thoroughly. It won't be uncommon to get confused by the plot while reading Neuromancer but as long as you're attentive and keep reading any conflict should resolve itself as the story unfolds. If you're a science fiction fan looking for a challenging read and interested in a classic then you should pick up Neuromancer.

    5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 11, 2007

    Choppy story

    I only got about half-way through this book. It reminded me a lot of trying to read Gravity's Rainbow where the writing at times was so choppy that I only ever had a vague idea of what was going on. I read several passages a few times and couldn't help but wonder what exactly had happened or why. If you read books by scimming along and getting the general idea of things as you go, then this won't bother you and for that, I'll say it's a neat sci-fi premise.

    4 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 3, 2012

    Fantastic book

    While at times i had to stop and read a paragraph or two over, it was still an understandable and entertaining book. I would definitely recommend to a sci-fi fan, but i think any of the newer generations can appreciate it

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 2, 2012

    Every bit as good as they say.

    This one's a classic for a reason. This is the book that spawned Cyberpunk, and includes the seeds of ideas that would give us Bladerunner (Do Androids Dream), and eventually The Matrix. So revolutionary that things I've loved have been cribbing off it for years without my knowledge. Good to finally be able to give credit where it's due!

    This one's a must read, whether you're in it for the detective story, the action, or the cybernetic enhancements. Great stuff.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 25, 2011

    Best ccyberpunk novel of all time

    anyone who says this is a bad book can punch themselves

    3 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 28, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Neuromancer

    The most important thing to keep in mind when reading 'Neuromancer' is that it was the first to do what it does. Before there was the Matrix trilogy, before iPods and 3D broadcasting home televisions, there was 'Neuromancer'. Written at the same time the very first home PC was released, Gibson envisioned a vast network of connected information called 'cyberspace'. People who sought to break into the databases of others would use their technical skills to link up with the Matrix and and break through layers of ICE to steal information. So basically, Gibson envisioned the internet as we know it, hackers and firewalls. The writing itself is actually pretty confusing. This is also the book that created the genre of cyber-punk, so it is very technically laden and can be mind boggling at times. The story itself is pretty interesting about an AI that seeks autonomy. The characters aren't all that original, in fact almost all of them feel like stereotypical mid 80's action film characters. Perhaps with the exception of the psychotic Riviera. I chose to read 'Neuromancer' because of all the reviews that referred to it as a mind bender. To that I must disagree. I will say that one chapter is VERY mind bending, but the rest, not so much; pretty straight forward actually. But that also may be me viewing the story through the lens of someone who has lived with things like the internet for most of my life. Either way, it is still a good book and an easy read for the most part.

    3 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 9, 2003

    Err...best cyber-punk novel ever?

    Well, I bought this book because of the numerous awards it recieved (Hugo, Nebula, and Philip K. Dick awards), thinking it couldn't be half bad, and it might even revive my waning love of SF. Well, I think it might've nailed the coffin shut. This is the first 'Cyber-punk' novel I've ever read, and probably my last. I actually started this novel ,like, half a year ago and stopped cuz I had no idea what was going on. Well, I finally finished it, still having no idea what it was about. The only reason why I'm giving it three stars is because of the lyrical, almost poetic prose that William Gibson has going on for him. His diction is truly amazing. Other than that, disappointing.

    3 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 12, 2013

    Poor pacing makes for a disjointed narrative

    No doubt some will proclaim that Gibson's choppy, stuttering prose is meant to reflect the setting of this dark story. Intentional or not, it makes for a decidedly unpleasant read. The uneven pacing and drug addled perspective of the POV character makes for a fairly boring read. I found myself unimpressed with the setting (scene setting is quite sparse.) and uninterested in the characters. I would only recommend this novel for hardened fans of the cyberpunk sub-genre. Go for Richard Morgan's Thirteen for a better written novel in a similiar setting.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 10, 2001

    As Good As Cyberpunk Gets

    From the first sentence, I can see why this novel would be considered such a landmark work in its specific genre. I compliment Gibson for each and every one of his thoroughly-constructed phrases; such precise language is rarely so stylish, having never been presented in such a modern tech-noir context. However, I felt the characters were all throwaways - I immediately thought of the filmed version of 'Mission: Impossible,' in which almost every member of the team dies without the audience getting a chance to care about any of them. In Neuromancer (a sort of 'M:I meets the Matrix'), the reader is presented with a similarly underdeveloped ensemble. Yet film audiences can tolerate shallow characters much easier than any dedicated reader can. Gibson is obviously a talented wordsmith, and I guarantee he could win more Hugos and Nebulas if he spent some time creating at least one fascinating character.

    2 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 6, 2001

    Probably the Greatest Work of Cyberpunk Ever

    Unfortunately, cyberpunk is not a very good genre. Most cyberpunk authors generally rehash whatever Philip K Dick book they like the most, and Gibson is no exception. The characters are tired-they're cardboard cutouts-as are the AI machines that the characters encounter. This book has its excellent parts, but the basic idea of plugging one's brain into a computer directly is not explored very well, so thinking readers would be better off watching The Matrix. Neuromancer is not a bad book, and it's certainly unique, but it does not stand up to earlier works of science fiction and its main ideas have been explored more fully in The Matrix and modern Anime.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 6, 2013

    Started off OK and got less and less interesting

    I'll make this short. The books characters and ideas were more than a bit strange to begin with but had enough substance to hook me into reading it. However, by he time I had gotten halfway through it I had lost all interest in the book. It didn't really seem to have a point and if it had a point it had a very obtuse way of making it. Also the characters had gotten more and more weird and less and less interesting. At that point I stopped reading it which I do with maybe 5-10% of any book I start to read. Watching the grass grow would probably be more interesting than reading this book.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 22, 2012

    Better than I Remember

    I finished Neuromancer a second time, the first was when I was between 12-14. I barely remembered anything from my first read through of the book so it was practically brand new.

    It's interesting, the way Gibson wrote the book, as his writing mimics the later quick-cuts of first music videos, then later movies. He doesn't languidly slide from one location to another, or one conversation to another. Everything jumps, from viewpoints, to conversations, to concepts.

    I enjoy me a good caper story and I was pleasantly surprised to re-discover this book was a caper of sorts. Gibson certainly withstands the test of time and nostalgia for me. A fantastic book.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 10, 2012

    Great book

    For those hung up on labels "cyberpunk" is a big pro/con of this book since it basically launched the genre. Ignore all of that marketing hype. This is an excellent near-future science fiction story. It's a perfect combo of action and intricate storyline. Still my favorite of Gibson's works.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 20, 2012

    Short answer review.

    Difficult at times to follow as Gibson's descriptions seem bent toward people in the story. Great story otherwise.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 4, 2012

    Nostalgia

    I am not sure why this was called a new trend setter back in it's day. Those of you over 60 will recognize the writing style as Micky Spillanes in his "Mike Hammer" series.......with profanity, sex. and sci-fi trappings. If it were music it would be Bill Haley and the Comets VS Brian Eno.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 13, 2014

    Needs more character development

    Was a good read, but seemed a bit jumpy. A longer read with more development of the characters wouldhave been appreciatec.

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  • Posted January 1, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    I must admit that I had lots of trouble following the plot. The

    I must admit that I had lots of trouble following the plot. The work is written from a third person point of view, but most of the time I could not realize who was &quot;she&quot;, or &quot;he.&quot; There were plenty of computer terms I could not follow: I had no idea who or what the &quot;Matrix,&quot; &quot;console cowboy,&quot; ROM module, Sense/Net, icebreaker program, Villa Straylight, Freeside, The Turing Law Code governing AIs (Artificial Intelligence programs), Screaming Fist, Moderns, cybernetic implants, etc. are or mean.....

    I must confess that I had to go to Wikipedia to get explanations to what was going on. If you want to read the book, I suggest you do the same. Here's the Wikipedia summary for your benefit:

    &quot;Henry Dorsett Case is a low-level hustler in the dystopian underworld of Chiba City, Japan. Once a talented computer hacker, Case was caught stealing from his employer. As punishment for his theft, Case's central nervous system was damaged with a mycotoxin, leaving him unable to access the global computer network in cyberspace, a virtual reality dataspace called the &quot;Matrix&quot;. Unemployable, addicted to drugs, and suicidal, Case desperately searches the Chiba &quot;black clinics&quot; for a miracle cure. Case is saved by Molly Millions, an augmented &quot;street samurai&quot; and mercenary for a shadowy ex-military officer named Armitage, who offers to cure Case in exchange for his services as a hacker. Case jumps at the chance to regain his life as a &quot;console cowboy,&quot; but neither Case nor Molly knows what Armitage is really planning. Case's nervous system is repaired using new technology that Armitage offers the clinic as payment, but he soon learns from Armitage that sacs of the poison that first crippled him have been placed in his blood vessels as well. Armitage promises Case that if he completes his work in time, the sacs will be removed; otherwise they will dissolve, disabling him again. He also has Case's pancreas replaced and new tissue grafted into his liver, leaving Case incapable of metabolizing cocaine or amphetamines and apparently ending his drug addiction.

    Case develops a close personal relationship with Molly, who suggests that he begin looking into Armitage's background. Meanwhile, Armitage assigns them their first job: they must steal a ROM module that contains the saved consciousness of one of Case's mentors, legendary cyber-cowboy McCoy Pauley, nicknamed &quot;Dixie Flatline.&quot; Pauley's hacking expertise is needed by Armitage, and the ROM construct is stored in the corporate headquarters of media conglomerate Sense/Net. A street gang named the &quot;Panther Moderns&quot; is hired to create a simulated terrorist attack on Sense/Net. The diversion allows Molly to penetrate the building and steal Dixie's ROM.

    Case and Molly continue to investigate Armitage, discovering his former identity of Colonel Willis Corto. Corto was a member of &quot;Operation Screaming Fist,&quot; which planned on infiltrating and disrupting Soviet computer systems from ultralight aircraft dropped over Russia. The Russian military had learned of the idea and installed defenses to render the attack impossible, but the military went ahead with Screaming Fist, with a new secret purpose of testing these Russian defenses. As the Operation team attacked a Soviet computer center, EMP weapons shut down their computers and flight systems, and Corto and his men were targeted by Soviet laser defenses. He and a few survivors commandeered a Soviet military helicopter and escaped over the heavily guarded Finnish border. Everyone was killed except Corto, who was seriously wounded and heavily mutilated by Finnish defense forces attacking the helicopter as it landed. After some months in the hospital, Corto was visited by a Government military official and then medically rebuilt to be able to provide what he came to realize was fake testimony, designed to mislead the public and protect the military officers who had covered up knowledge of the EMP weapons. After the trials, Corto snapped, killing the Government official who contacted him and then disappeared into the criminal underworld.

    In Istanbul, the team recruits Peter Riviera, an artist, thief, and drug addict who is able to project detailed holographic illusions with the aid of sophisticated cybernetic implants. Although Riviera is a sociopath, Armitage coerces him into joining the team. The trail leads Case and Molly to a powerful artificial intelligence named Wintermute, created by the Tessier-Ashpool legacy, who spend most of their inactive time in cryonic preservation inside Villa Straylight, a labyrinthine mansion located at one end of Freeside, a cylindrical space habitat located at L5, and functioning primarily as a Las Vegas-style space resort for the wealthy.

    Wintermute's nature is finally revealed – it is one-half of a super-AI entity planned by the family, although its exact purpose is unknown. The Turing Law Code governing AIs bans the construction of such entities; to get around this, it had to be built as two separate AIs. Wintermute (housed in a computer mainframe in Bern, Switzerland) was programmed by the Tessier-Ashpool dynasty with a need to merge with its other half – Neuromancer (whose physical mainframe is installed in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil). Unable to achieve this merger on its own, Wintermute recruited Armitage and his team to help complete the goal. Case is tasked with entering cyberspace to pierce the Turing-imposed software barriers using a powerful icebreaker program. At the same time, Riviera is to obtain the password to the Turing lock from Lady 3Jane Marie-France Tessier-Ashpool, an unfrozen daughter clone and the current leader of Tessier-Ashpool SA. Wintermute believes Riviera will pose an irresistible temptation to her, and that she will give him the password. The password must be spoken into an ornate computer terminal located in the Tessier-Ashpool home in Villa Straylight, and entered simultaneously as Case pierces the software barriers in cyberspace – otherwise the Turing lock will remain intact.

    Armitage's team attracts the attention of the Turing Police, whose job is to prevent AIs from exceeding their built-in limitations. As Molly and Riviera gain entrance to Villa Straylight, three officers arrest Case and take him into custody; Wintermute manipulates the orbital casino's security and maintenance systems and kills the officers, allowing Case to escape. The Armitage personality starts to disintegrate and revert to the Corto personality as he relives Screaming Fist. It is revealed that in the past, Wintermute had originally contacted Corto through a bedside computer during his convalescence, eventually convincing Corto that he was Armitage. Wintermute used him to persuade Case and Molly to help it merge with its twin AI, Neuromancer. Finally, Armitage becomes the shattered Corto again, but his newfound personality is short-lived as he is killed by Wintermute.

    Inside Villa Straylight, Riviera meets with Lady 3Jane and tries to stop the mission, helping Lady 3Jane and Hideo, 3Jane's ninja bodyguard, to capture Molly. Worried about Molly and operating under orders from Wintermute, Case tracks her down with help from Maelcum, his Rastafarian pilot. Neuromancer attempts to trap Case within a cyber-construct where he finds the consciousness of Linda Lee, his girlfriend from Chiba City, who was murdered by one of Case's underworld contacts. Case manages to escape flatlining inside the construct by choosing of his own free will not to stay. Freeing himself, Case takes Maelcum and confronts Lady 3Jane, Riviera, and Hideo. Riviera tries to kill Case, but Lady 3Jane is sympathetic towards Case and Molly, and Hideo protects him. Riviera blinds Hideo, but flees when he learns that the ninja is just as adept without his si

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