Seeing where the Gamma s arrow landed would not be a bad bonus either.
I have read through five copies of this book, four of them falling apart from so much wear and tear, and would highly recommend it to any fan of sci fi and or cyberpunk.
Voice of the Whirlwind VOTW is billed as cyberpunk, and does have a few of the trappings, but it s very much a sci fi noir novel with transhumanist elements The hero of the story, Etienne Steward, is a beta he s been reborn into a cloned body from a back up of his mind What happened to the original alpha version isn t clear to Steward, but one thing he does know is that the alpha hasn t updated his back up in a while, so the beta version wakes up to find he s already out of date He spend the rest of the novel trying to figure out what happened to his alpha, and to set things straight.
I feet the novel has strong world building elements, and in particular I like the descriptions of the off world locations, which are evocative and colorful The further we get from home in Steward s quest, the weirder things become Ultimately we encounter humans that are so modified they feel alien like limbless spiders moving through the vacuum and actual aliens that are really quite alien so much so that they re physically addictive to humans The plot, however, is pretty convoluted, and it twisted back on itself several times This makes it pretty hard to keep up at times It all comes to a tidy end, however.
I ll recommend this as an SF novel than a cyberpunk novel It s decent, but not groundbreaking It shines in its descriptions If you like your SF to have big ideas, or horrors the poetry of invention, then you ll have to look elsewhere.
Steward is a clone, the clone of a man who spent years as a member of a military polycorp called Coherent Light The original, or alpha, was murdered, and the clone, or beta, is determined to find out who and why.
Unfortunately, he s been revived with fifteen years of memory missing Nor is this an accident It s a deliberate choice his alpha made, and chose not to explain Steward has a lot of information to recover before he can hope to complete his mission, and every step of the way is dangerous He s chasing through the solar system, one space habitat after another, and the history he missed includes the arrival of a significantly advanced alien species known as the Powers.
It s a well written story, with good plot and good characters, as you d expect of Walter Jon Williams Unfortunately, unlike many other Williams works, this one just didn t really connect for me Not enough that I stopped listening to the audiobook, or that I regret listening to it It is a good book If you like cyberpunk, there s a good chance this will work a lot better for you than it does for me.
So I d say don t rush out and buy it, but if it crosses your path, give it a try.
I bought this audiobook.
Walter Jon Williams gets spookiness, writing a sci fi espionage thriller that rivals vintage Le Carre The protagonist, Stewart, is an old insurance policy, a clone with the 15 year old memories of his original, recently murdered on a space station Last thing he remembers, he d finish mercenary training with the Icehawks before a mission to Sheol to recover alien artifacts After that, well, his original was a busy man with a lot of unfinished business.
A little less stylized than Hardwired, Voice of the Whirlwind tracks Stewart across the solar system and into a deadly game of corporate politics and biological warfare against the alien Powers, an advanced race that holds the key to massive wealth, and possibly an escape from the brutal cycle of corporate Darwin Days and ideological entropy It s also not as compelling, but one chapter alternating Stewart making a drug connection in LA with an account of the war on Sheol, is as fine a writing as anything in scifi.
I decided to re read this, as part of my hey, the author isn t deceased after all celebration I d forgotten how good it is.
The novel sweeps you along right from the start, without being bewildering as, for instance, Gene Wolfe can do Having the main protagonist be a newly created clone with out of date memories is a great way to explain things to the reader as you go along.
The setting isn t the star, it s merely there for mood That s a good thing, in my opinion I d say the book is about evenly divided between character and plot, and it scores highly in both areas.
The book never stumbles, and I never lost the sense of being there with the protagonist I think this novel is a masterful acheivement.
But it s not at all certain that the original Steward was a warcasualty As a matter of fact, it s beginning to look like he wasmurdered.
Suddenly, an old friend, Griffith, shows up, offering an opportunitythat could help Steward find out what happened but without theknowledge of what his Alpha was tangled up in, he may be in over hishead.
Plenty of action and mystery are balanced by a focus on ethical concerns.
This was one of those books my husband picked for me to read Sci fi usually isn t my cup of tea, but I did end up enjoying this one because of the mystery involved It took a while to get going, but once it did I got absorbed in it It got really interesting when he finally started finding clues to who killed him, why, and the missing 15 years of his first life While I ended up liking the book overall, I think it s main flaw is that there are no really likeable characters in it.
Steward, A Clone Fifteen Years Overdue For A Brain Scan Update, Has No Idea That The Orbital Policorp Which Held His Allegiance Collapsed, Dozens Of His Friends Perished In Interstellar Combat, An Alien Race Established Relations With Humanity, And Two Wives Divorced Him Walter Jon Williams admits that this wasn t conceived as a sequel to Hardwired, and it does very much stand on its own It s quite readable, and hard to put down at times Steward s identity as a clone is palpable throughout the text The ending did feel a little rushed, and I had one suspension of disbelief moment, but it did still all hang together It didn t push my buttons quite as much as Hardwired, but I enjoyed it quite a bit.
I don t read a lot of science fiction but I ve read this book probably ten times over the years It just has a great protagonist It says it s part of a series but other than being set in the same time era, it really has no connection to another book Interested to hear from others who have read this.