Mona Lisa Overdrive

Front Cover
Bantam Books, 1989 - Fiction - 308 pages
21 Reviews
William Gibson, author of the extraordinary multiaward-winning novel Neuromancer, has written his most brilliant and thrilling work to date . . .The Mona Lisa Overdrive.  Enter Gibson's unique world--lyric and mechanical, erotic and violent, sobering and exciting--where multinational corporations and high tech outlaws vie for power, traveling into the computer-generated universe known as cyberspace.  Into this world comes Mona, a young girl with a murky past and an uncertain future whose life is on a collision course with internationally famous Sense/Net star Angie Mitchell.  Since childhood, Angie has been able to tap into cyberspace without a computer.  Now, from inside cyberspace, a kidnapping plot is masterminded by a phantom entity who has plans for Mona, Angie, and all humanity, plans that cannot be controlled . . . or even known.  And behind the intrigue lurks the shadowy Yazuka, the powerful Japanese underworld, whose leaders ruthlessly manipulate people and events to suit their own purposes . . . or so they think.
 

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Mona Lisa overdrive

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Able to enter the vast data network known as "cyberspace'' at will, Sense/Net celebrity Angie Mitchell becomes the center of a bizarre kidnap/murder scheme in which her only allies are the daughter of ... Read full review

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This was the first William Gibson novel I ever read, and, as such, I was slightly confused about what was going on in the world in which it took place (it's considered the third part of a semi-connected trilogy dubbed "the Sprawl Series"). After working out exactly the nature of the setting, I then had to penetrate the strange language and style Gibson writes in, a sort of sci-fi Noir-beat poetry prose. Getting into it for the first time is not unlike reading "Brave New World" or "A Clock Work Orange" for the first time and, like both those books, once you do you are truly and deeply rewarded. The desolation of the scenes, be they at the beech house, in the rust belt, or at the Counts cyber-villa, hangs heavy in the heart in a beautiful way, the characters are tragic yet gripping; it's the perfect end to my favorite series. Most less-than-generous reviews cite the strange language used or some perceived misrepresentation of female characters, but I don't feel either of those are fair. The characters exist, they are people, but all of them are isolated in their own ways, specialists, perfections of some particular aspect of their world and, in that, all the more tragic and sympathetic.
Read it; It's brilliant.
 

Selected pages

Contents

Section 1
1
Section 2
10
Section 3
17
Section 4
25
Section 5
31
Section 6
40
Section 7
46
Section 8
56
Section 24
178
Section 25
184
Section 26
190
Section 27
201
Section 28
206
Section 29
212
Section 30
219
Section 31
224

Section 9
66
Section 10
75
Section 11
84
Section 12
96
Section 13
106
Section 14
109
Section 15
114
Section 16
123
Section 17
131
Section 18
136
Section 19
142
Section 20
148
Section 21
153
Section 22
158
Section 23
172
Section 32
231
Section 33
235
Section 34
242
Section 35
249
Section 36
255
Section 37
260
Section 38
271
Section 39
276
Section 40
284
Section 41
288
Section 42
292
Section 43
298
Section 44
303
Section 45
305
Copyright

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Michael Heim
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About the author (1989)

William Gibson was born on March 17, 1948 in Conway, South Carolina. He dropped out of high school and moved to Canada, where he eventually graduated from the University of British Columbia in 1977. He is the author of Mona Lisa Overdrive, The Peripheral, and Neuromancer, which won the Phillip K. Dick Award, the Hugo Award, and the Nebula Award. He also wrote the screenplay for the film Johnny Mnemonic.

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