The Peripheral

The Peripheral is a Book Eras are conveniences particularly for those who never experienced them We carve history from totalities beyond our grasp Bolt labels on the result Handles Then

The Peripheral is a Book “Eras are conveniences, particularly for those who never experienced them. We carve history from totalities beyond our grasp. Bolt labels on the result. Handles. Then speak of the handles as though they were things in themselves.”Thirty years ago Neuromancer by William Gibson was published. The award winning novel was a breath of fresh air for a genre that had become too inbred. The new science fiction writers were too like the granddaddies of the genre only paler in complexion and not as bone deep on science. Then the term cyberpunk appeared:"Classic cyberpunk characters were marginalized, alienated loners who lived on the edge of society in generally dystopic futures where daily life was impacted by rapid technological change, an ubiquitous datasphere of computerized information, and invasive modification of the human body." – Lawrence PersonNeuromancer fit that definition in spades. What made the Sprawl trilogy by Gibson must-read-books for me was the noir aspects that Gibson wrapped around all his plots. The future looked just like the 1940s only with synthetic clad hackers as the main characters instead of cotton and wool gumshoes. Hackers against megacorporations instead of detectives against governmental forces controlled by rich people. The one thing they have in common they are always outgunned and always outnumbered. We love the underdog. People who try to read Neuromancer today have mixed results. I see a lot of one star and two star reviews and feel more than a mild irritation, but it isn’t the reader’s fault. Most people do not see novels as history, but they are. In 1985 when I read Neuromancer I had never read anything quite like it. I could feel the electric hum (or that could have been the circuitry of my Macintosh computer) of something new in the air and felt excited about a future that looked a lot more interesting than the present. Most readers do not read any background on novels or have any idea of the significance of a novel except the entertainment value it can provide. They may know that Neuromancer won some awards and is a “famous” novel, but it is difficult for them to grasp how this novel helped spawn a whole new line of publishing. They have read many of the descendants of Neuromancer so the basic concepts are not new to them; in fact, some of Neuromancer actually feels dated now. Without a time machine and a strategic mind wipe I can’t give them the experience that I had. (I’m working on both concepts, but I’ve hit some snags.)So here we are thirty years later, William Gibson is 66 years old, and has just published his eleventh novel although I want to say twelve, but Burning Chrome is actually short stories. This is his largest novel. I was a little surprised when it arrived in the mail and didn’t have the sleek, modelesque appearance of a usual Gibson novel. He introduces us in this book to two worlds. One is a world in the near future that Daniel Woodrell would feel extremely comfortable in and the other is a world seventy years in the future after the “jackpot” has happened. ”No comets crashing, nothing you could really call a nuclear war. Just everything else, tangled in the changing climate: droughts, water shortages, crop failures, honeybees gone like they almost were now, collapse of other keystone species, every last alpha predator gone, antibiotics doing even less than they already did, diseases that were never quite the big pandemic but big enough to be historic events in themselves. And all of it around people: how people were, how many of them there were, how they’d changed things just by being there.”No sexy biological agent escaping from a lab or zombies or a complete climate meltdown, but rather a slow agonizing slide into self-destruction. Only the very rich survived. I don’t know a more depressing statement than that. Daniel Woodrell is probably wondering how in the world he ended up in this review.In the Daniel Woodrell World Flynne has agreed to help her brother Burton out on a project he has already agreed to do. Legal issues that must be cleared up keep him from being available. He and his friend Connor, who came back with psychological difficulties and in the case of Connor missing body parts from an unspecified war, are trying to adjust to a society too crippled to worry about their wounded warriors. Everyone, including Flynne, earn a living through a variety of short time jobs. Most of the work available is outright illegal or at least in the gray area of bending the rules. Flynne hates video games, but she happens to be very good at them. She isn’t thrilled that Burton has saddled her with test driving this software, but the money is good, maybe too good. She sees something she isn’t supposed to see. Nanobots eat a woman down to the last morsel. It’s just a game right...wrong. She has just seen a murder in the future. Whoa...wait...what? Yeah, come to find out there is a mysterious server in China that has somehow connected to the future. Data can stream between the two different time eras. There is an economic war going on in that future, a power struggle that spills back into the pass as warring factions compete for power. Flynne becomes a very important pawn. “Conspiracy theory’s got to be simple. Sense doesn’t come into it. People are more scared of how complicated shit actually is than they ever are about whatever’s supposed to be behind the conspiracy.” Wilf Netherton is a publicist in the future. Well the present for him, and the future for Flynne. He drinks too much, sleeps with his clients, and generally is on the verge of cratering his career. He might seem like an unlikely candidate to be the representative of the future, but he has one asset that always proves useful, people like him. Flynne is no exception. They can stream her from the past into what is called a Peripheral, a highly advanced cyberorganism. As Wilf is pulled further and further into the push and pull surrounding Flynne he finds his powers of deception inhibited by the wholesome honesty, not to be mistaken for naivety, of Flynne. Those are characteristics so rare in his future that he has very little experience with it. Human nature does not change and those in power, those consumed with greed, must exploit this new technology to gain leverage or advantages in their quest for more and more power. If they destroy two worlds, two different time lines, then so be it, their competitors won’t have it either. William GibsonGibson is certainly taking on a larger theme for this novel. The first half of the novel had me scrambling to keep up just to understand the two worlds he was presenting. I had several moments, not unusual for a Gibson novel where I wondered if I was smart enough in a black jacket, dark sunglasses, skinny black jeans kind of way to keep up. The second half of the novel starts to bog down (in need of a bit of nanobot tidying) as the plot seems to be held hostage by Gibson while we explore the concept of these Peripherals. We are also introduced to a flurry of characters all integral in some fashion to the grand finale set in a reassembled version of Newgate Prison, ”its granite face, bristling with iron” in London. This novel may stretch your brain a bit or if you are a smarty pants it might make the right connections that inspires you to put the finishing touches on your own version of a Peripheral or a Michikoid or a Medicis. For those wanting tips on what to invest in for the future, Cosplay just gets bigger and more elaborate. If you wish to see more of my most recent book and movie reviews, visit http://www.jeffreykeeten.comI also have a Facebook blogger page at:https://www.facebook.com/JeffreyKeeten. Flynne Fisher lives in rural near future America where jobs are scarce and veterans from the wars are finding it hard to recover She scrapes a living doing some freelance online game playing, participating in some pretty weird stuff Wilf Netherton lives in London, seventy some years later, on the far side of decades of slow motion apocalypse Things though are good for tFlynne Fisher lives in rural near future America where jobs are scarce and veterans from the wars are finding it hard to recover She scrapes a living doing some freelance online game playing, participating in some pretty weird stuff Wilf Netherton lives in London, seventy some years later, on the far side of decades of slow motion apocalypse Things though are good for the haves, and there aren t many have nots left Flynne and Wilf are about to meet one another Her world will be altered utterly, and Wilf s, for all its decadence and power, will learn that some of these third world types from the distant past can be real badass.. Good Books The Peripheral It was great to experience Gibson back in futuristic mode after a 12-year period of writing contemporary techno-thrillers. As typical of his classic cyberpunk stories, you are thrown in the middle of the action and have to figure out what the characters are up to from context. That includes strange new technologies and odd new terms. It’s always a kind of a thrill that you can learn to swim this way. The approach is frustrating and aversive to many, but it seems to be how Gibson inspires a motivation to get actively engaged in the problem solving that is a continual core to his mode of plotting. The story evolves by alternating between two sets of characters in a myriad of short, punchy chapters. One set work for a company called Haptic Recon, which hires itself for all sorts of information gathering and security missions with a focus on computer hacking and projecting themselves virtually through robot drones. The main characters are two ex-military guys, Burton and his buddy Conner, and Burton’s sister Flynne. Conner has lost limbs in some war and depends on cool equipment and prostheses to get around. Flynne substitutes for Burton on a job she is told involves beta-testing a new game and witnesses what appears to be a real murder of a wealthy woman in a high-rise by some strange new technology, some kind of molecular disassembler. Soon it appears that witnessing has made her a target by unknown enemies.The other set of characters also work for a new kind of corporation that mixes publicist work for celebrities, security, and mercenary missions. A woman Rainey and her male boss Netherton are trying to manage a celebrity journalist and performance artist of some sort. She has her tattooed skin replaced periodically and sold to museums. Their client gets in trouble by invading a floating island of recycled plastic where a cult of neoprimitivists have set up a kingdom and riling them up to the point that her defensive drones implement a bloodbath. Thus, you see the theme of problem solving efforts of hired hands being tapped when the wealthy create messes that get out of control. The two sets of middle-level techs find that their shadowy corporations are larger than they imagine and are engaged in a crisis and conspiracy of a large magnitude. The characters are forced to up the ante by stealing classified technology. In a marvelous projection of today’s 3D printing, they can contract fabrication of powerful biological robot drones or drugs that turn people into “homicidal erotomaniacs” To whet potential readers I will share that the premise has something to do with one set of players monitoring and manipulating the activities of another set 70 years in the past. The reader can’t escape a powerful quandary of whether to identify more with the folks in recognizable near future world, which is in the middle of a slow apocalypse of disease, famine, extinctions, and corporate scrambling, or with the cool cats in the more distant and alien future that is more stable due to government by corporate oligarchies that harness nanotechnology, AIs, armed micro-drones, and robotic avatars.Gibson is often dissed for his sketchy characters that don’t lend themselves much to emotional engagement by his readers. For others that same cool detachment is the right stuff in noir traditions and hacker-chic that makes them heroic Davids against the corporate Goliaths (our intrepid Goodreads, Jeffrey Keeten, borrows from Walter Mosley’s title to tag Gibson’s leads as “always outnumbered, always outgunned”). The characters are created with a few strokes and select revelations of emotion, but it feels pretty masterly to me. They really sick in the mind with their quirks, ambitions, worries, their domestic lives. Often it’s hard to pick a lead character in Gibson’s tales. Here our omniscient observer hops among the perspectives of ten or so characters, but the two women characters Flynne and Rainey got my empathies for their humanity. Still, the briefer time in the narrative with the real anti-heroes was even more of a pleasure. One wealthy power broker was a star for me in bearing her power in such a charming package. LowBeer is an ancient director of an official MI5-type of state security agency, but she seems to have more world-wide power as a puppetmaster supreme between the two timelines. Her spyware is built into the network everyone uses and gives her powers from all accessible secrets. As evil as that sounds, I homed my hope in the prospect that she would turn out to be one of good guys. The edge of suspicion kept me on my toes, like when she pulls an Orwell when the publicist speaks of terrorism:“We prefer not to use that term,” said Lowbeer, studying her candle flame with something that looked to Netherton to be regret, “if only because terror should remain the sole prerogative of the state.”She really gets me worried when she speaks of the impact of tapping communications with the past, using a term that may or may not emphasize how little she might care about the fate of a past that is drifting away from her timeline:The act of connection produces a fork in causality, the new branch causally unique. A stub, as we call them.Mind boggling and fun is my best summary. Two cautionary futures for the price of one. A lot more angles on the old pleasure meter may be reaped from Jeffrey Keeten’s greatreview.
The Peripheral The Peripheral The Jackpot Trilogy Gibson, William The Peripheral is a hybrid cyberpunk time travel story told from two mostly alternating third person limited points of view looking at each other from either end of an unspecified period of future history The content is pure William Gibson fan service and almost criticism proof. The Peripheral TV Series The Peripheral Drama TV Series Episode Guide episodes Set in the future when technology has subtly altered society, a woman discovers a secret connection to an alternate reality as well as a dark future of her own View production, box office, company info Added to Watchlist. The Peripheral Series at Adds Gary Carr Oct , The Peripheral was first picked up to series by late last year The one hour drama hails from writer, executive producer and co showrunner Scott

  1. Librarian Note There is than one author in the database with this name See this thread for information.William Ford Gibson is an American Canadian writer who has been called the father of the cyberpunk subgenre of science fiction, having coined the term cyberspace in 1982 and popularized it in his first novel, Neuromancer 1984 , which has sold than 6.5 million copies worldwide.While his early writing took the form of short stories, Gibson has since written nine critically acclaimed novels one in collaboration , contributed articles to several major publications, and has collaborated extensively with performance artists, filmmakers and musicians His thought has been cited as an influence on science fiction authors, academia, cyberculture, and technology William Gibson 2007, October 17 In , The Free Encyclopedia Retrieved 20 30, October 19, 2007, from enpedia w indexp t

451 Reply to “The Peripheral”

  1. Eras are conveniences, particularly for those who never experienced them We carve history from totalities beyond our grasp Bolt labels on the result Handles Then speak of the handles as though they were things in themselves Thirty years ago Neuromancer by William Gibson was published The award winning novel was a breath of fresh air for a genre that had become too inbred The new science fiction writers were too like the granddaddies of the genre only paler in complexion and not as bone deep on s [...]


  2. It was great to experience Gibson back in futuristic mode after a 12 year period of writing contemporary techno thrillers As typical of his classic cyberpunk stories, you are thrown in the middle of the action and have to figure out what the characters are up to from context That includes strange new technologies and odd new terms It s always a kind of a thrill that you can learn to swim this way The approach is frustrating and aversive to many, but it seems to be how Gibson inspires a motivatio [...]


  3. History had its fascinations, but could be burdensome William Gibson, The PeripheralGibson might not always be the most accurate futurist, but he s probably the glossiest, the most polished I actually really dig Gibson I don t think he s perfect Sometimes his schtick gets worn a little thin, but I loved Neuromancer and really liked his Blue Ant series Pattern Recognition, Spook Country, Zero History The Peripheral shares a similar aesthetic with the Blue Ant books, but jumps into the speculative [...]


  4. I m not rating this, partly because it doesn t come out for a while and partly because I m torn about my overall reaction The first half of The Peripheral contains some of the most visionary writing of William Gibson s career He returns to science fiction and offers up detailed versions of the future that feel as prescient and compelling as his work back in the Neuromancer days It s exciting, thought provoking, and wonderfully dizzying stuff Unfortunately, the second half of the novel grows incr [...]


  5. Look, I m not going to be remotely impartial here, okay I m a Bill Gibson fan In addition to which, and to my enduring delight and the bewilderment of my 16 year old self, we re kinda friends now I got this book early direct from the author, it s out in the UK today, and I m going to go and buy a copy because that s what you do when a book is good.This book is very, very good.There are ten thousand people out there right now writing critical exegeses of The Peripheral There s a great interview b [...]


  6. Eras are conveniences, particularly for those who never experienced them We carve history from totalities beyond our grasp Bolt labels on the result Handles Then speak of the handles as though they were things in themselves Yes but I just have to say, speaking of eras WOO HOO William Gibson is back in the era of the definitely pretty far in the future Not that I didn t wholly love his recent books that were in the right around the corner future, but I felt like we were catching up The Peripheral [...]


  7. Reading a new William Gibson novel is both delightful and exciting He delights with the cool, sardonic yet imaginative visions of the present and future He excites with his uncanny glimpses of the future, grounded in canny selections from our time.The Peripheral offers another pleasure, that of Gibson trying something new His recent brace of novels looked at the very near future, each following a normal linear path His classic cyberpunk or Sprawl trilogy envisioned a medium term future, also ten [...]


  8. Hard to pick the right rating for this one It s as though I ve ordered a chicken parma because I like chicken parmas, and this certainly is a very tasty chicken parma, but somehow I m disappointed that it tastes like so many other chicken parmas.Replace chicken parma with book with a near future settings where some rich people with inscrutable motivations do something via, then for, then ulitmately via some spud from the lower social strata which boils down to one pivotal moment of agency close [...]


  9. Periferal je dobar roman, solidan roman, Periferal je odli an roman, Gibson je verovatno u prvih pet SF autora kad je u pitanju jezgrovitost i funkcionalnost izlaganja, dijalozi su mu britki a svako malo sevne i neka neo ekivana poetska iskra, likovi su upe atljivi i nekako instant simpati ni, budu nost sadr i scene zaslepljuju e i tu inske lepote, radnja samo iba, bojim se da je i dalje dobar prorok jer ne predvi a ni ta prijatno pa ta onda fali Ni ta, samo eto nije remek delo kao to je Neuroma [...]


  10. Executive Summary A good, but not great techno thriller of sorts 3.5 Stars.Audio book I really didn t like Lorelei King at the start But she grew on me I m not sure if she got better as the book went on, or I just needed some distance from my previous book She s clear and easy to hear She did a few voices, but they weren t very memorable to me.I will say I started off pretty confused I m not sure if that would have been solved with some rereading of the early chapters, or if I just needed to get [...]


  11. I thought for a long while about how to rate this book I had been initially intrigued by the premise, and there were a few strong scenes in the first half which while reading gave me hope of an enjoyable read in the end however I found Gibson s The Peripheral disappointing.My first difficulty with the book was the overdose of concept Certainly Gibson would have wanted his futuristic novel to have a certain degree of jargon and new technical terms and no one wants to bog their book down explainin [...]


  12. Received this as an ARC via my employer Barnes Noble I began it today and after 24 pages, I remembered why I didn t like Mr Gibson s books If you re not a computer geek or a gamer, then you don t know what the hell he s talking about The jargon and slang expressions meant nothing to me, and it was difficult to ascertain from the context so, unfortunately, I m giving up and moving on to another book I m not going to live long enough to read everything I want to read anyway, so I have to set some [...]


  13. I m not sure how Gibson manages to carve out these visions of the future that just wriggle into your brain and convince you that they re just so very possible and true but he does it every damn time This tale told in two timelines takes place in futures that are human and horribly, wonderfully, grimly liveable In one, phone games, 3d printed drugs, and technologically messed up soldiers paint a bleakly recognisable future In the other, the apocalypse has happened and instead of Mad Max it s stil [...]


  14. THE PERIPHERALS is just as frustrating as Gibson s other books You might as well know that before you dive it He has this writing style that throws the reader into the shark tank and it s up to you to provide some imagination and to just hang on, muttering all the while, before you are swept up and away.Which is to say that I really enjoyed this book THE PERIPHERALS is very much character driven and some how, without paragraph after paragraph of descriptions and explanations, he creates a world [...]


  15. An Unsettling, But Brilliant, Look at the Future Courtesy of William GibsonIn a year that has seen an ample abundance of or less routine dystopian near future speculative fiction novels of which the least admirable was a highly touted debut novel about word viruses William Gibson s The Peripheral is an exceptional bit of literary fresh air It represents the long overdue return of not only one of speculative fiction s most important intellectuals, but also, one of the most noteworthy writers of [...]


  16. While every Gibson novel carries a bit of cryptic uncertainty from its opening pages, The Peripheral is unique in both its overall cryptic nature and its droll, humorous style Part of this is the result of the nature of the near future protagonists Instead of cyberpunk smartasses or Yakuza hired killers, we get punky but endearing hillbilly meth head equivalents and disabled veterans living in a future rural Southern hill country where illicit drug building is the only occupation Our primary her [...]


  17. This book has a 5 star idea, but it was definitely not a 5 star reading experience I certainly wouldn t have gotten beyond the first couple of chapters if I weren t reading it with a reading group I suggested it because it s a time travel novel by a well known sci fi writer and because so many of the reviews for it have been 5 star reviews Plus, the premise sounded interesting The beginning of the story is set in the near future when using local 3D printing sometimes with pirated printing plans [...]


  18. This was a tricky book that I mostly enjoyed Things I liked The protagonist, Flynne, is awesome Just generally a kickass straightforward independent woman Gibson writes women really well, in my opinion, and this book is no exception The plot is exciting and makes you want to keep going to figure out what the hell is going on as with all Gibson books, the glory is in the details There was obviously a ton of thought put in to fleshing out a believable and intricate alternate world Highlights inclu [...]


  19. A Misunderstanding of FictionGibson occupies an unusual place between literary fiction and the kinds of fantasy and sci fi that use language as a minimal, transparent vehicle for fantasy He has been read by any number of critics, including Fred Jameson, as a sign of postmodernism and the digital age and he has been taken as a kind of cyberworld version of Nostradamus, full of predictions about our future The implied author of The Peripheral is clearly engaged in both activities the book is full [...]


  20. William Gibson s storytelling skill is such that we read listen to him string adjectives, verbs, and nouns together in the places we expect to find them, only to discover 30 40 minutes later that we have no earthly idea what it is he is talking about Ah, but what does it matter He is slick, cool, forward thinking Surely it will all become clear I like several things about his future world the one that contains Flynn and her brother Burton Composting toilets are no longer unusual, and virtual rea [...]


  21. Brainycat s 5 B s blood 2boobs 0bombs 0bondage 0 blasphemy 0Bechdel Test FAILDeggan s Rule FAILGay Bechdel Test FAILPlease note I don t review to provide synopses, I review to share a purely visceral reaction to books and perhaps answer some of the questions I ask when I m contemplating investing time and money into a book.I like to think of myself as a HUGE Gibson fan I was but a wee lad when Neuromancer came out, and I absorbed it as greedily as I did every issue of Omni The Chiba City trilogy [...]


  22. The future has been worrying us lately A good deal of conversation has taken place online about how it looks to us, in fact as well as in fiction, and how that matters A smart example is Virginia Postrel s 10 08 14 post on Bloomberg View, though it s not and doesn t pretend to be comprehensive.William Gibson s new novel like the rest of his work has something to contribute to the conversation After working with the future in his early fictions, his settings drew steadily closer to the present, a [...]


  23. So first of all I ll start with the setting It s set in rural near future America in a world where the economy has nearly collapsed, jobs are scarce and recovery is long and arduous Not entirely dissimilar from our current situation People do whatever they can to get by, which includes new forms of Internet usage as technology has continued to evolve despite the world economic, social and political conditions This is only half the setting however It also focuses around London seventy or so years [...]


  24. I ve loved Gibson since Neuromancer and The Peripheral doesn t disappoint.Gibson likes to throw you in at the deep end, where nothing makes sense I eventually figured that what I really needed for this book was to have my left eye reading one page, while my right eye was reading two pages ahead everything has an explanation, and he doesn t leave you waiting too long to get it, but you re going to spend those two pages completely baffled And of course, by the time you understand one thing that ha [...]


  25. At first, you are disoriented and trying to figure these two future worlds out, but soon you have your sea legs and you don t want to put this book down Flynne, Burton, Wilf, Connor, and Lowbeer are very likable characters Burton and Connor are not complex characters but what you think of as the ex military vet personality Lowbeer is almost Godlike with her connections and power Wilf and Flynne are the complex real people you love and root for in this battle of good vs evil As always in Gibson [...]


  26. Just starting and needless to say I m confused as hell Like older Gibson, where you have no idea what s going on I m sure, like Neuromancer etc everything will be clear


  27. It is, said Lowbeer, as people used to say to my unending annoyance, what it is It s hard not to like a book with such sentiments in it.I have been resisting this author for decades, mostly because he was recommended to me by my long suffering wife LSW , to whom I feel the need to make pointless displays of independence of mind, and also because he was popular with a certain segment of our society, and again see above pointless displays etc One day, LSW and I were sitting around the apt studious [...]


  28. Reprinted from the Chicago Center for Literature and Photography cclapcenter I am the original author of this essay, as well as the owner of CCLaP it is not being reprinted illegally Although I was a huge fan of cyberpunk author William Gibson when younger, I must admit that I haven t read anything by him since 1996 s Idoru, mostly because the four novels he s written since then have all been contemporary thrillers with little science fiction in them, which is simply something I m not really tha [...]


  29. The Holy Grail for those who work in virtual reality is to create something called presence, a feeling that the person entering into a virtual reality is really there The goal is to provide a truly immersive experience indistinguishable from real life In the work of William Gibson, original coiner of the word cyberspace, achieving this kind of presence can be both empowering and debilitating, ecstatic and frightful In today s world, even with the advent of things like Google Glass and sprawling [...]


  30. Gibson se vra a svojim korenima ustrom kiberpanku upakovanom u detektivsku pri u koja oscilira, gledano iz perspektive itaoca, izme u dve mogu e budu nosti Misteriozni server sme ten verovatno negde u Kini omogu ava ljudima iz dve vremenske linije kontakt Flin u po etku misli da je njeno prisustvo u budu nosti samo virtualno, deo igre, ali ubrzo shvata da bizarno ubistvo koje je videla, i zbog kojeg postaje meta, nije samo ra unarska simulacija.Iz nama bli e budu nosti, pre apokalipti nog doga a [...]


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