- Series: Macmillan New Writing
- Paperback: 224 pages
- Publisher: Trans-Atlantic Publications, Inc. (October 1, 2006)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0230000096
- ISBN-13: 978-0230000094
- Product Dimensions: 8.1 x 5.4 x 1.3 inches
- Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 3.4 out of 5 stars See all reviews (19 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #12,570,421 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Manuscript (Macmillan New Writing) Paperback – October 1, 2006
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A debut novel from British author Fuchs involving guns, blackmail, computers, unfathomable corruption and angry young Taoists, all part of a bloody quest for a mysterious manuscript.The manuscript in question is a document - probably apocryphal - written by Sir Richard Burton, the 19th-century adventurer, translator, eroticist and Renaissance man. It seems that in a brief sojourn to South America in the 1860s, he just might have come across a remote tribal culture that had answers to all the Major Philosophical and Theological Questions that have troubled humans since ancient times, including Does God exist? and What's the meaning of life? While evidence suggests that Sir Richard's wife burned all of his manuscripts after his death, rumors swirl that this one important work escaped the conflagration and has recently been posted on the internet, buried deep - so deep that Google can scarcely reach it (under "The meaning of Life") - within the newsgroup alt.religion.taoism.angry. The novel focuses on the attempts of numerous individuals to recover the manuscript: Miles Darken, a computer geek with mystical propensities; his former girlfriend Dana, who works for a professor trying to recover the manuscript; Celeste Browning, employed by Global Acumen, a mysterious organization that monitors the movement of sensitive information over the Internet; FreeBSD, computer whiz and drug dealer; and The Cleaner, a sociopathic killer willing to assassinate anyone who gets in his way. It turns out that the Angry Young Taoists do in fact exist, and they live up to their name. Without a proverbial scorecard, it becomes difficult to separate one bloody group from another. The carnage mounts as they increase the intensity of the search. Fuchs seems to operate on the narrative principle of "when in doubt, put in a firefight." It becomes clear that the manuscript is not important, just the action in trying to acquire it.Any comparison to a bestseller involving a certain Code is purely coincidental. (Kirkus Reviews)
"Clever and engaging." Times Literary Supplement
"All the usual suspects: hitmen, shadowy 'intelligence' agents, and drug dealers... emerges as a high-energy, enthusiastic yarn." Dr. Ian Hocking, Pulp.net
"Chases, gun battles, gangsters, and computers. This man knows his craft . . . There is insight behind the action." Shameless Words
"Breathless, cyber-techno thriller . . . a great novel!" Flavourpill, London
"High philosophical ambitions." ComputerWeekly
"A very powerful piece of work. Some writers leave you thinking they know things we ordinary mortals don't have access to." Crème de la Crime
"A thriller that examines the power of the internet and the implications for those who are manipulated by it." Stuff magazine
From the Back Cover
'A high-energy, enthusiastic yarn.' - Pulp.net
''The Manuscript is dazzling. It's a tightly-plotted thriller, but it's also a terrific literary chronicle of our Electronic Age. The writing's smart, sexy, and as funny in spots as it's dark in others. But I love this book because it has soul, too. It's not afraid to ask the big questions about the Meaning of Life. And here's the kicker: it's not even afraid to answer them.' - Valerie Sayers, author of Due East and Brain Fever
'Clever and engaging.' - Times Literary Supplement --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top customer reviews
The two main protagonists are a sysadmin (who has a penchant for handguns) and his grad student friend at a college in Virginia. The immense cast of well-developed characters expands early and rapidly to encompass a security expert, an undercover cop, an underground team of well-trained self-appointed cyber-vigilantes known as the Angry Young Taoists, a BOFH/drug kingpin, and many, many more.
I won't give away any more of the plot.
Anyway, the action builds up early in the story, and then relentlessly ploughs on for a very long time, with many twists and turns and loads of gun battles, Mexican standoffs, and geekspeak. And is very very cool.
If Tarantino ever got a techie streak and decided to start writing novels, he would come up with something awfully close to this. The style is very cinematic, but unlike a film, the action gives you more than just two hours of entertainment.
I look forward to future work from Mr. Fuchs...Good stuff.