Clearly, cyberpunk works best wholly in the hands of its creators creating narratives about tech is nearly as hard as inventing it. And nobody has surpassed Gibson, whose ninth novel is set, like his last (the well-received Pattern Recognition), in the futuristic world of the here and now. Gibson opens with a writer working on a story about a virtual reality artist for a magazine that doesn't exist, and moves into a shadowy world of government operatives and dark secrets like a jacked-in Don DeLillo. The book teeters with his signature dense, tangled prose, like it's embedded with a linguistic virus designed to upend casual readers. That's not a knock: We read too fast anyway, and his style is entirely suited to his dark, fragmented worlds.
Gibson, who visits San Francisco on the day after Spook Country is released, appears at a Booksmith-sponsored event.