Bruce Sterling, de facto leader and spokesperson for the mirrorshades group, has assembled some of his favorite cyberpunk stories in this 240-page anthology containing works by eleven authors, including William Gibson, Pat Cadigan, Rudy Rucker, Marc Laidlaw, Paul Di Filippo, John Shirley, and other pioneers of the cyberpunk genre. Sterling's preface is a short history of the roots and development of cyberpunk, as well as one of the most successful attempts at a definition of the cyberpunk ethos to date.
Graphic: from backcover photo of "Difference Engine"
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The term (cyberpunk) captures something crucial to the work of these writers, something crucial to the decade as a whole: a new kind of integration. The overlapping worlds that were formerly separate: the realm of high tech, and the modern pop underground. - Bruce Sterling, preface to Mirrorshades.
Cyberpunk comes from the realm where the computer hacker and the rocker overlap, a cultural Petri dish where writhing gene lines splice. Some find the results bizarre, even monstrous; for others this integration is a powerful source of hope.
- Bruce Sterling, preface to Mirrorshades.