Friday, May 28, 2010

Greg Egan - John Clute

From the Encyclopedia of Science Fiction, edited with Peter Nicholls

"Australian writer who began publishing work of genre interest with his first novel, An Unusual Angle (1983), a fantasy, and whose first short stories were also fantasy. From the mid-1980s, however, he has increasingly concentrated on sharply written sf with an emphasis on BIOLOGY and CYBERNETICS, assembled in 2 collections, Axiomatic (coll 1995 UK) and Our Lady of Chernobyl (coll 1995); the best of them - tales like
"The Caress" (1990) and "Learning to Be Me" (1990) - raised considerable expectations for his first sf novel, Quarantine (1992 UK), which effectively, and literally, encapsules a near-future private-eye plot, of the sort familiar to readers of CYPERPUNK, within a solar system enclosed by a vast enigmatic Bubble. The unfoldings of the plot, and of its implications about human identity in a world (or worlds) controllable at the quantum level through COMPUTER-augmented brain functions, is extremely intricate; this multifacetedness also marks Permutation City (1994 UK), which searchingly examines the implications - in terms involving mathematics, computer science and cosmology - behind the construction of binding VIRTUAL REALITIES. GE has become a dauntingly successful investigator of the new worlds-microscopic and macrocosmic - with which sf increasingly finds itself required to daeal."

3.5 out of 5

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