(Masterpieces of American Literature)

From the New Rose Hotel outside Narita airport, the unnamed narrator describes the events which brought him to Japan, still yearning for his lover Sandii, whose gun is his last remaining souvenir of her. The hotel’s rooms are coffin-sized capsules, making plain his desperation and imminent death.

A corporate spy, the narrator and his partner Fox arrange the defection of radical genetic research scientist Hiroshi Yomiuri from Maas Biolabs GmbH to Hosaka, the most powerful zaibatsu (conglomerate) in Japan. To do this, the pair have Sandii, the narrator’s lover, seduce Yomiuri. Sandii is mysterious, making up different versions of her childhood and claiming each is the truth. The night before the defection, the narrator finds a strange disk in Sandii’s purse.

The defection proceeds successfully, Fox and the narrator are rewarded by Hosaka, and the narrator looks forward to a rendezvous with Sandii in Tokyo. However, the double-crossing Sandii allows Yomiuri and most of Hosaka’s other research scientists to be killed through a Maas-created virus—-a situation the narrator suspected but could not accept. Fox is killed by Hosaka, and the narrator hides from the zaibatsu at the New Rose, still hoping to see Sandii again.


(Masterpieces of American Literature)

Cavallaro, Dani. Cyberpunk and Cyberculture: Science Fiction and the Work of William Gibson. New Brunswick, N.J.: Athlone Press, 2000.

Easterbrook, Neil. “The Arc of Our Destruction: Reversal and Erasure in Cyberpunk.” Science Fiction Studies 19, no. 3 (November, 1992): 378-394.

McCaffery, Larry, ed. Storming the Reality Studio: A Casebook of Cyberpunk and Postmodern Science Fiction. Chapel Hill, N.C.: Duke University Press, 1991.

Olsen, Lance. William Gibson. San Bernardino, Calif.: Borgo Press, 1992.

Slusser, George, and Tom Shippey, eds. Fiction 2000: Cyberpunk and the Future of Narrative. Athens: University of Georgia Press, 1992.

Tabbi, Joseph. Postmodern Sublime: Technology and American Writing from Mailer to Cyberpunk. Ithaca, N.Y.: Cornell University Press, 1995.