Archive for December, 2014

Review: The Peripheral

Tuesday, December 30th, 2014

It took me a while to figure out  seemed out of place in William Gibson’s latest, The Peripheral. The cool stark prose was there. There’s a near future seeing, though he does do a few more hard SF tricks than most of his recent work. World spanning settings – from rural towns to high end art enclaves.  There’s nothing missing.

It took me a while to figure out that there’s something new here.  There’s some actual optimism.  Not the usual optimism one finds in a Gibson book that’s born of a few of his gentlemen losers eking a minor concession from a relentless world.  There are folks in here who are genuinely good in an almost Carl Hiaasen way whose good deeds are rewarded.

It surprised me quite a bit when I saw it.

The book as a whole is thought provoking and chock full of characters who humanize the big ideas at play.  Gibson’s always been a writer of character and atmosphere to me, and Peripheral is no exception. Everything is crisp and interesting and in the service of ideas and theme.

Good fun.


Getting the last lick

Friday, December 19th, 2014

There’s really only one place I’ve lived that I cannot imagine moving back to – Poughkeepsie, NY. I spent a year there one summer working for IBM and left every weekend. I just never warmed up to it, and I was very much looking forward to leaving. On my last day I was driving home from work to put the city permanently in my rearview mirror, when my car skidded across the centerline on wet pavement and was totaled. I always thought it was a little unfair for Poughkeepsie to kick me once more when I was down, and apparently the year 2014 also wanted to get one last lick in.

I am writing this from a hospital bed waiting for surgery to repair my third broken hip this year.  Unlike my earlier mishaps, this was pretty much a slip and fall. I was lifting my leg off the bike before I put it in the garage, but it was at a dead stop.

It’s another broken femur, on the right side this time. I’m hoping for another speedy recovery. Watch this space for more details as the morphine wanes!