The sky above the port was the color of television, tuned to a dead channel.
Thus, with this iconic opening line from his debut novel, Neuromancer, did William Ford Gibson announce himself to the wider SF world, in 1984, and light the blue touch paper on the nascent sub-genre known as Cyberpunk.
Although Gibson did not invent Cyberpunk (that honour goes to Bruce Bethke in the November 1983 issue of Amazing Stories), he did coin the term ‘cyberspace’ in the title story of his 1986 collection Burning Chrome. And Neuromancer was clearly a book that SF readers were ready for. It won the Hugo, Nebula and Philip K. Dick Awards, and has been regularly picked as one of the twentieth century’s most important works of fiction.
Regular readers of this blog will know that Gollancz recently concluded a deal to bring Neuromancer, Count Zero, Mona Lisa Overdrive and Burning Chrome back home to Gollancz (where they were originally published by our very own Malcolm Edwards). As soon as we have covers for our new editions, we’ll share them in this very place, but meanwhile, we content ourselves with saying:
Happy Birthday, William Gibson!