Zero History by William Gibson

Gibson’s last three books have just got better and better. In ‘Zero History’ we are back with Hollis Henry, former lead singer with The Curfew; Milgrim, the damaged shady operative; and Hubertus Bigend, who is beginning to look ever more like someone bigger than just a media and marketing guru. Indeed, part-way through this novel, there is an incident which made me think “What IS a marketing guru doing with hardware like THIS?”. By the end of the book, some of Bigend’s motivation is coming clear, and the words “Bond villain” are attached to him, only partly in jest. And parts of it I found laugh-out-loud funny.

Gibson has fallen in love with London, but he still sees it through the eyes of an outsider; speaking through Milgrim, he constantly expresses surprise at how London differs from daily life in the USA. And there is some sort of resolution for his characters; even, perhaps, some happy endings, not something you’d normally associate with Gibson.

This is now a novel of Today; for one thing, since reading it, I’ve done a double-take whenever I’ve encountered a Toyota Hilux pickup on the road. My one question is this: where does Gibson go from here?


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