Copyright 1994 by
I first read this in February 1996.
In just a few more years, there'll be a quite revolution as Japanese
technology finally realises "real" virtual reality leading to a new
world order based on a blendo of Japanese culture, Buddhism and
Californian New Age mysticism.
Dr Frank Gobi teaches a course on
"transcultural corporate anthropology and organizational shamanism".
At this point you really wonder just how bad this book is going to be.
But it's not absolute garbage: in this new world, new-wave pseudo-science
matters and works, and Besher makes you believe it.
Our Dr Gobi is not an absolute airhead, in fact he is a skilled and
Now Dr Gobi is called upon to save thousands of lives in a crashed
and virus-infected virtual world. Throughout the real world, adults and
children lay comatose, their consciousnesses disconnected and lost in
virtual reality. And, as the VR simulation slowly runs down, they will
die in the real world. His son is one of the comatose victims.
A cross between thriller and fable, Besher has succeeded in
creating a unique novel that's both hugely entertaining and
thought-provoking. The Japanese ambience is captured perfectly in the
politeness and the sexism. There's a nice sprinkling of Japanese words
to remember and use in dinner conversation. There's quite a few women
who seem to find Frank Gobi irresistible, so there's some sex, which
makes a pleasant change from all the mysticism, and there's
"interactive sushi", and stuff like this:
"Now he was in a working altered state. His consciousness preceded him like an Indian scout on an astral plane."
Loaded on the 10th December 2001.