I read Neuromancer over the last couple nights for the first time in probably a decade.
I’m really surprised at how much more I get out of it with each read.
Gibson was, at the time at least (I sorta lost interest in his stuff about half way through Mona Lisa Overdrive) not a spectacular character builder. You had a vague notion of what his characters were like, but he fell in to a lot of violations of “show don’t tell.” (see: Corto/Armitrage)
But what really struck me on this read through is how much open-ended description is in every paragraph. He doesn’t draw you a picture, he just puts some very brightly colored blots and lines on the canvas and has you fill in the rest which, if you took the time to do it, would make Neuromancer the slowest read in the galaxy, despite it’s size.
So I tend to just blast through it and rely that I’ll get something different this time than I got last time; and I’m never let down.
The only thing that really bugs me is…
Why name it Neuromancer? Neuromancer himself is in what…one scene, maybe a brief follow up? Wintermute is the more interesting figure by any estimation (certainly with regards to page time. Neuromancer is the deeper, more easily anthropomorphized entity.)
But “Neuro – Romancer” does read better than “Wintermute” I suppose.
What next I wonder. It’s time to seriously pick up my reading schedule. I wanted to get 50 in this year and I’m at about 12. So I’m going to need to pick some books out of the “light” pile and…maybe less Seneca and Herodotus.