Colin Laney is a data analyst with a talent for seeing patterns, or nodes, as he calls them, in the flow of information that is cyberspace. Chia McKenzie is a young member of the fan club for the Japanese pop supergroup Lo/Rez. When a rumour involving the lead singer of Lo/Rez and an idoru, a Japanese virtual-reality singing idol, brings both Laney and Chia to Tokyo, the resulting web of events involves Russian criminals, Japanese schoolgirls, and illegal nanotechnology. And it's all set in a Tokyo that is literally growing and changing around the characters, rising from the rubble of a major earthquake.
Idoru is not William Gibson's best novel, but it is a good example of his primary strength: creating worlds that don't so much show the future as expose the world we already live in, a world of computers, information, mega-corporations, pop art, tabloids, and rock & roll. Idoru works not only on its own terms but also as a set-up for Gibson's next novel, All Tomorrow's Parties. Gibson broadens his perspective by including a wider range of characters than in his earlier novels, but mainly Idoru moves Gibson's work forward by pushing further into his familiar territory. It is the work not of a writer who is discovering new topics, but of one who is re-examining his old ones, bringing greater depth and maturity to his art in the process. --Greg L. Johnson
--This text refers to the
Mass Market Paperback
From Publishers Weekly
The founding father of cyberpunk again returns to the techno-decadent 21st century mapped in his other major works (Virtual Light, Neuromancer, etc.). As usual, Gibson offers a richly imagined tale that finds semi-innocents wading hip-deep into trouble. Colin Laney has taken a job in Japan to escape the revenge of his former employer, Slitscan, a kind of corporate gossip-mongerer on the Net that he has crossed out of scruples. Meanwhile, Chia Pet McKenzie is active in the fan clubs for Lo/Rez, a Japanese superstar rock duo; while visiting Japan to investigate some new rumors about the group, she is used to smuggle illegal nanoware to the Russian criminal underground. Both Laney and Chia get caught up in the intrigues swirling about the plans of Rez, one half of the band, to marry Rei Toei, an "idoru" (idol) who exists only in virtual reality. Gibson excels here in creating a warped but comprehensible future saturated with logical yet unexpected technologies. His settings are brilliantly realized, from high-tech hotel rooms and airplanes to the infamous Walled City of Kowloon. The pacing is slower than Virtual Light, but Gibson exhibits his greatest strength: intense speculation, expressed in dramatic form, about the near-term evolution and merging of cultural, social and technological trends, and how they affect character. Dark and disturbing, this novel represents no new departure for Gibson, but a further accretion of the insights that have made him the most precise, and perhaps the most prescient, visionary working in SF today. 100,000 first printing; $100,000 ad/promo; author tour.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.