- Series: Sprawl Trilogy
- Mass Market Paperback: 246 pages
- Publisher: Ace; Reprint edition (April 1, 1987)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0441117732
- ISBN-13: 978-0441117734
- Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 0.7 x 6.9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 198 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #50,418 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Count Zero (Sprawl Trilogy) Mass Market Paperback – April 1, 1987
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“Potent and heady.”—Philadelphia Daily News
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Top customer reviews
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The follow up to Neuromancer, Count Zero is another cyberpunk classic that revisits many themes of his previous book. It follows several interconnected stories: a mercenary hired to attack a corporate fortress that escapes with a girl that has undergone experimental modifications and can hack computers without a deck. A hacker that is almost killed as he is played into testing an experimental deck and discover that there are strange entities roaming the matrix. And a small art gallery owner from Paris that is hired by a eccentric trillionaire to find a series of boxes.
The language and descriptions here are top-notch. Gibson has an uncanny talent to makes this now retro-futuristic world come alive, along with several interesting and mind-bending themes. One is how corporations and Big Money end up having a life and will of their own, not only like a living organism, but a colony of different spheres with different agendas that compete among themselves. Another is how artificial intelligences adopt an air of godhood as they incorporate the persona of voodoo gods.
This is the second of the Sprawl trilogy with Neuromancer preceding Count Zero and Mona Lisa Overdrive coming after. You don't have to read Neuromancer first, but it definitely helps set the stage for the type of world that Gibson immerses you in. Very much looking forward to reading Mona Lisa Overdrive next.
Also, if you're deciding between this and Neal Stephenson (Snowcrash) I'd highly recommend the Sprawl trilogy instead.
This book is really about introducing "The Count" himself, and describing the events that shaped him for the concluding book of this trilogy: "Mona Lisa Overdrive". The world is fleshed out a bit, and the reader is treated to the unending complexity of Gibson's world. This, like the other two books in the series are fascinating and in many ways plausible look at how the world _might_ end up. Although this truly is a setup book, don't let that dissuade you, the characters are awesome, and the story is engaging.
I recall reading this years ago, perhaps about the time it appeared on the bookshelves the first time, and being fascinated with it. Now, with 25+ years between its' publishing and today, it still manages to capture my attention and interest. Gibson is one of those writers who can write stories about characters and technology in such a way that while central to the story the technology doesn't overwhelm the characters and is abstract enough that even 25 years after he penned the book, it doesn't feel dated or implausible, just different.
In this, "Neuromancer" "Count Zero" & "Mona Lisa Overdrive" remind me of E.E. "Doc" Smith's Lensman Novels where starships are flown with banks of Levers, Valves and Inertial Navigation systems, or even the great Isaac Asimov's Foundation books, where "Atomics" rule the day. Even though the technology in their works is dated or even absurd, the stories still stand and are considered classics. So too "Neuromancer", "Count Zero" & "Mona Lisa Overdrive" where I think you'll find that the concept of a [Cyber] Deck isn't so far different from modern tablets, cell phones & PC's after all...and Cyberspace absolutely reeks of the modern Internet (aka Cyberspace!). Even without that easy correlation however, like Asimov & Smith, Gibson's books are bonified classics.
On top of that, "Neuromancer", "Count Zero" & "Mona Lisa Overdrive" are THE books that began the entire Cyberpunk genre/meme. How cool is that?
"Count Zero" is a book I consider a staple of my collection of great Science Fiction. For me, it and its' siblings stand proudly among my collection of Asimov, Foster, Anderson, Anthony, Pohl, Banks, Bova, Smith, Heinlein, Dickson and many others.
Most recent customer reviews
I don't overuse the word 'literally', like most people, but literally every second sentence your mind boggles at the transcendent quality...Read more