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Vurt

by Jeff Noon

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Vurt (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
1,679277,336 (3.96)1 / 56
This 20th Anniversary Edition features a foreword by Lauren Beukes and three fantastic new short stories, all set in the extraordinary world of Vurt... Take a trip in a stranger's head. Travel rain-shot streets with a gang of hip malcontents, hooked on the most powerful drug you can imagine. Yet Vurt feathers are not for the weak. As the mysterious Game Cat says, 'Be careful, be very careful'. But Scribble isn't listening. He has to find his lost love. His journey is a mission to find Curious Yellow, the ultimate, perhaps even mythical Vurt feather. As the most powerful narcotic of all, Scribble must be prepared to leave his current reality behind. 'Vurt was an SF novel that was really fresh and peculiar' William Gibson, 'Transgressive. It got under your skin like Cronenberg, or like Poppy Brite' Chuck Wendig, 'Vurt is a gripping piece of speculative fiction' Guardian… (more)
  1. 20
    Neuromancer by William Gibson (falkman)
  2. 10
    The Gone-Away World by Nick Harkaway (KatyBee)
  3. 00
    John Dies at the End by David Wong (vwinsloe)
    vwinsloe: strange drug entry to alternate reality
  4. 00
    Catspaw by Joan D. Vinge (kraaivrouw)
  5. 00
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  6. 00
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  7. 01
    Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions by Edwin A. Abbott (BrynDahlquis)
    BrynDahlquis: The books are seemingly completely different, but they both are rather surreal and deal with dimensions (of a sort) and wondering if your "world" is actually all there is.
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» See also 56 mentions

English (25)  Spanish (1)  Finnish (1)  All languages (27)
Showing 1-5 of 25 (next | show all)
I honestly don't what to think about this book.

On the one hand, it's like a jazz festival that mixes Naked Lunch with Trainspotting.

Add an alien feast, nanobot robot cooks, robodogs, The New Weird, and a vast dreamscape that goes from heaven to hell, from arty cafes to cop busts, to licking feathers to get high, to an outright possible reference to Tammuz and Geshtinana with an incestuous bent, and I STILL don't know what to think about this book.

It has a clear jazzy style that jumps all over the place easily, filling in backstory in a fun way, but at the same time, there are so many odd references to a world so alien and just like a drug-filled afternoon, that I can't quite say it was comfortable at all.

And yet it was very creative. I loved the virtual meta moments, the way it felt like a mix between Matrix and Strange Days years before those movies were ever made. It also felt like Existenz in a HUGE way. Again, this was written long before that, as well.

So here I am, looking at the genuine article, the haze of the utterly strange and fascinating and brilliant, and I'm wondering if I even like it.

On one hand, I will absolutely respect it and give it major props for existing and to myself for having read it, but I can't say that it was all that pleasant. However, I have also said the same things about China Mieville and Vandermeer, so it may be a tolerance thing and a mood thing rather than an exacting approbation or me being amazed. Of course, I could be both at the same time. :)

Love, and hate. Or beauty and ugliness. My reaction fits quite well with the contents of the book, from imagery to spelled-out themes. So perhaps this was the whole point, to begin with.
( )
  bradleyhorner | Jun 1, 2020 |
A babbling jumbled mess of a story about drug addicts of the future. Supposedly a great piece of cyberpunk, but it was lost on me. ( )
  tombrown | Feb 21, 2020 |
In its own category although it could be put in cyberpunk, dystopian, surreal, literary science fiction. It's one of those books that produces a sense of awe, that hits you somewhere deep and a bit of it sticks to your psyche even years later. Genius, underrated classic. ( )
  Paperpuss | Feb 25, 2019 |
How abstract are you willing to go? If you're not scared of a little meta then this book is for you. This book takes an LSD trip and combines it with an ever lasting Virtual reality trip. Drugs are administered through feathers, which you almost swallow. That's pretty much the most concrete one can get describing the contents of this novel.

The plot revolves around a writer (Scribble) who loses his sister in an out of control virtual reality drug trip. In exchange he ends up with a being from that reality. In the rest of the book the main character tries to rescue his sister by trading back the alien for his sister. Reading this feels like being chased by sensory overload, as if that could be a monster hunting you.

Vurt is often compared to works by William Gibson, but unlike Gibson Jeff Noon actually provides assistance here and there to help you understand the maddening world of the protagonist. It takes effort reading this novel but it's worth it. Once you get used to the language, the character confusions and the reality stretching world descriptions, you're in for quite a trip.

If you can get a hold of a library edition then try that first, although the book is good, it's definitely an acquired taste. ( )
  TheCriticalTimes | Jan 7, 2019 |
https://nwhyte.livejournal.com/3089047.html

I was not really blown away by the book, as so many readers clearly were when it first came out (including the Clarke judges, who in my view should have gone for Snow Crash). Cyberpunk isn’t really my subgenre, Dick did the Dickian bits better, the characterisation is rather flat, and in the set-up, the state rather implausibly seems to have little contact with the alternative scene of our protagonists (when in fact you’d expect police and welfare agencies at least to be keeping a wary eye and at worst to be complicit in the supply of dubious substances). I found it rather dragged, despite its relatively short length. I can see why some people liked it, but it didn’t really work for me. ( )
  nwhyte | Sep 23, 2018 |
Showing 1-5 of 25 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (3 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Noon, Jeffprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Lundwall, Sam J.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Magee, JoeCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Thiemann, UteTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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Vurt (1)
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Mandy came out of the all-night Vurt-U-Want, clutching a bag of goodies.
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This 20th Anniversary Edition features a foreword by Lauren Beukes and three fantastic new short stories, all set in the extraordinary world of Vurt... Take a trip in a stranger's head. Travel rain-shot streets with a gang of hip malcontents, hooked on the most powerful drug you can imagine. Yet Vurt feathers are not for the weak. As the mysterious Game Cat says, 'Be careful, be very careful'. But Scribble isn't listening. He has to find his lost love. His journey is a mission to find Curious Yellow, the ultimate, perhaps even mythical Vurt feather. As the most powerful narcotic of all, Scribble must be prepared to leave his current reality behind. 'Vurt was an SF novel that was really fresh and peculiar' William Gibson, 'Transgressive. It got under your skin like Cronenberg, or like Poppy Brite' Chuck Wendig, 'Vurt is a gripping piece of speculative fiction' Guardian

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