Glasshouse by Charles Stross | Paperback | Barnes & Noble
Glasshouse

Glasshouse

4.0 29
by Charles Stross
     
 

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In the twenty-seventh century, accelerated technology dictates the memories and personalities of people. With most of his own memories deleted, Robin enters The Glasshouse-an experimental polity where he finds himself at the mercy of his own unbalanced psyche.

Overview

In the twenty-seventh century, accelerated technology dictates the memories and personalities of people. With most of his own memories deleted, Robin enters The Glasshouse-an experimental polity where he finds himself at the mercy of his own unbalanced psyche.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“Where Charles Stross goes today, the rest of science fiction will follow tomorrow.”—Gardner Dozois, Editor, Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine

“A new kind of future requires a new breed of guide—someone like Stross.”—Popular Science

Publishers Weekly
The censorship wars-during which the Curious Yellow virus devastated the network of wormhole gates connecting humanity across the cosmos-are finally over at the start of Hugo-winner Stross's brilliant new novel, set in the same far-future universe as 2005's Accelerando. Robin is one of millions who have had a mind wipe, to forget wartime memories that are too painful-or too dangerously inconvenient for someone else. To evade the enemies who don't think his mind wipe was enough, Robin volunteers to live in the experimental Glasshouse, a former prison for deranged war criminals that will recreate Earth's "dark ages" (c. 1950-2040). Entering the community as a female, Robin is initially appalled by life as a suburban housewife, then he realizes the other participants are all either retired spies or soldiers. Worse yet, fragments of old memories return-extremely dangerous in the Glasshouse, where the experimenters' intentions are as murky as Robin's grasp of his own identity. With nods to Kafka, James Tiptree and others, Stross's wry SF thriller satisfies on all levels, with memorable characters and enough brain-twisting extrapolation for five novels. (July) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Library Journal
Demobilized after the latest civil war, Robin awakens in a clinic with most of his memories gone, a new identity, and an assassin on his trail. To hide from his pursuer, he joins an experimental community, the Glasshouse, to study life in an older culture-that of Earth in the final years of the 20th century. He attempts to settle in to his new world only to find that, even in a protected environment, he is not free from danger. Hugo Award winner Stross (Singularity Sky) takes an original and often playful approach to his visions of the future. He examines questions of identity, gender, and the human condition in the context of this sf thriller, which belongs in most libraries. Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Far-future mind control, from British author Stross (Accelerando, 2005, etc.). By the 27th century, death need not be permanent: People routinely make backup copies of themselves; disease and old age can simply be edited out. Human civilization, scattered across the galaxy in diverse habitats connected via wormhole gates, is slowly recovering from a prolonged and brutal war against an insidious memory-deleting, mind-controlling cyberworm called Curious Yellow. Narrator Robin, a citizen of the Invisible Republic, emerges from a memory edit, guessing he wanted to remove painful memories of the conflict. He meets, and soon falls in love with, Kay-and realizes that somebody's trying to kill him-because of what he was? Or something his former self knew? His robot psychiatrist advises him to join a closed experimental community where he can safely recuperate. So, after his next routine backup, Robin wakes in the Glasshouse-in a female body. Robin, now Reeve, is part of a sociological experiment aimed at recapitulating a long-lost environment: Earth during the 1950s. Glasshouse residents, however, are expected to conform, and there are heavy penalties for deviants. Reeve agrees to marry big, unhappy, skeptical Sam, and tries to assimilate. But things are not what they seem. The Glasshouse is run by two notorious Curious Yellow collaborators, Major-Doctor Fiore and Bishop Yourdon. Meanwhile, Robin's memories begin to surface. He was a member of the combat Linebarger Cats and later became an agent-sent into the Glasshouse, memories suppressed to evade the censors, to find out what's really going on. A perfectly tuned combination of gravitas and glee (the literary/cultural references are a blast).Stross's enthralling blend of action, extrapolation and analysis delivers surprise after surprise.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780441015085
Publisher:
Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
06/26/2007
Pages:
352
Sales rank:
734,744
Product dimensions:
4.30(w) x 6.85(h) x 1.00(d)
Age Range:
18 Years

What People are saying about this

From the Publisher
“Where Charles Stross goes today, the rest of science fiction will follow tomorrow.”
—Gardner Dozois, Editor, Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine

“A new kind of future requires a new breed of guide—someone like Stross.”
Popular Science

Meet the Author

Charles Stross was born in Leeds, England in 1964. He holds degrees in pharmacy and computer science, and has worked in a variety of jobs including pharmacist, technical author, software engineer, and freelance journalist. He is now a full-time writer.

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Glasshouse 4 out of 5 based on 1 ratings. 29 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A great book. Something I have been yearning for--a strong story, unusual ideas, interesting people. An author worth grabbing on to. Thoughtful, thought provoking
Anonymous 6 months ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Started off so strong! But lost me in the last quarter of the story, which seemed almost unrelated to what had come before.
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Made me think. Introduces an interesting idea of immortality and existence in general. Really, really enjoyed it.
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hls1966 More than 1 year ago
This book does what all good science fiction does. Makes you THINK! And to enjoy this book, you do have to think quite a bit while you're reading. It's not an easy read, but it is worth the work. If you consider how our modern lives are "in the cloud" (online backup, sync, sharing, social networking), we've already begun living our digital lives in this world.
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I didn't think I would enjoy this book, but it was pretty good. Not great, but pretty good. Strong statements are made regarding proprietary file formats and how this will effect the future's view of us. The author leads you down the dark discovery of the hero's past. He questions if evil actions, even during war time, make one evil. And, if you don't remember these evil actions, are you still the same person? A good look into how memory and thought shape our lives with a strong plot with few holes.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
SteveTheDM More than 1 year ago
This was a really fascinating book. Stross has managed to create a setting that looks back at 1950s to 1990s culture from the perspective of far-future humanity. That juxtaposition of world views makes for a rich set of conflicts, and the book really shines when those conflicts are the subject at hand. Intertwined with that is mixed a plot of the aftereffects of a viral-based information war actually set in that far-future humanity. The culture shock portions of the novel are by far the best. Characterization is wonderful, and there is lots of humor to be had in those crazy things historical humans used to do. The war stuff was not nearly as good. Unfortunately, that really hurts the end of the book, where the two plots twist together. You get the feeling Stross may have felt the same way, because the ending seems very rushed. 4 of 5 stars.
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kbdax More than 1 year ago
I'd never read anything by Charles Stross before rather randomly picking up this title in the bookstore and I'm really glad I did, because it was a real treat to read. It's very well-written. The universe/world in which its set is quite interesting, the plot is intrriguing and the characters are spot-on human and sometimes very funny! An overall excellent read -- I really enjoyed it.