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Implied Spaces

3.72  ·  Rating Details ·  995 Ratings  ·  112 Reviews
Aristide, a semi-retired computer scientist turned swordsman, is a scholar of the implied spaces, seeking meaning amid the accidents of architecture in a universe where reality itself has been sculpted and designed by superhuman machine intelligence. While exploring the pre-technological world Midgarth, one of four dozen pocket universes created within a series of vast, or ...more
Kindle Edition
Published (first published January 11th 2008)
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Dan Schwent
Feb 04, 2011 Dan Schwent rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sf
When it comes to genre fiction, I'm a big fan of books that use what I'm now calling the Reese's Effect to tell an interesting story. That is, I like when genres collide as chocolate and peanut butter do in Reese's Peanut Butter Cups.

Implied Spaces is a prime example of the Reese's Effect (see, it's catching on). I'd say it's a sword and planet/cyberpunk/singularity/detective/zombie story.

At first glance, the story is a mix of Roger Zelazny's Lord of Light and Philip Jose Farmer's World of Tier
Mar 08, 2015 Jason rated it liked it
Shelves: e-books, read-2015
3 Stars

Implied Spaces by Walter Jon Williams should have been a perfect read for me as it contains pretty much all of my favorite genres mashed into one. At it's heart, Implied Spaces is a future based science fiction. Williams is a gifted writer and sometimes that is not a good thing. I am a fan of his but as before I feel that the writing here is better than the story.

The boom started out great to me, but at the halfway point of this short read I felt impatient for it to end. I loved the scie
So if someone had cryogenically frozen Robert Heinlein mid-late career, let's say The Moon Is a Harsh Mistress…ish, before he got too . . . y'know. And then they revived him in the mid-aughts and gave him a crash course in modern computer science and fantasy role-playing games? This would totally be the book he'd write in response. It was the talking AI cat that really got me there. But the self-obsessed semi-immortal adventurer who treats every occasion as an amusement park built specifically f ...more
Jul 30, 2008 James rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Science fiction and fantasy fans.
Recommended to James by: I follow Mr. Williams' blog.
Important safety tip. If you're picking up Implied Spaces with the idea of reading a bit before you sleep, don't. Don't even pick it up. Because when the dawn's early light starts peeking through your window, you'll still be reading it.

Background: In physics, string and 'brane theories in their current states seem to suggest that more universes are possible, even likely, and that indeed, it might be possible to create one's own universes in the lab. Since each universe's laws of physics are esta
Sep 07, 2013 DMS rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mar 12, 2009 Bruce rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sf-fantasy
As you may know, three stars means that this is usually a 4 star author (though williams has his 5 star moments) but that I think it is worse than his usual.

This book is an oddly solipsistic bit of fun. It's hard to imagine that the main character finds himself in the situations he does, and the author actually addresses this point with the surprise super villian. But the explanation to me raises more questions, calling attention to a weakness of the book IMHO. The gee whiz solution to the confl
Oct 05, 2010 Alan rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: People who don't mind a little mind- and genre-bending
Recommended to Alan by: A back-page ad in another Night Shade book, and by previous work
A light and stylish work of what—despite its initial appearance—turns out very quickly to be science fiction. And, again despite initial appearances, Implied Spaces develops both darkness and depth as it goes along. Walter Jon Williams is far from a one-note author—one might even call him polyphonic—and in this book he displays that range to good effect, drawing the reader along with Aristide, whom we meet as a raffish and likeable swordsman crossing the arid lands of Midgarth accompanied by his ...more
Phil McCrum
Feb 21, 2012 Phil McCrum rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

I'm having trouble reading lately... I have too many irons in the fire and keep getting diverted from one activity to another without finishing anything. Regardless, I was able to finally completely read a novel this week; partly because I forced myself to focus and partly because this particular novel got me hooked.

"Implied Spaces" is about a man, Aristide, who has lived for centuries due to advances in medicine and health care. He lives in the future where most people have left earth to live i
J.L. Dobias
May 02, 2012 J.L. Dobias rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: book-shelf-09
Funny thing: I ran across this book while looking for a book someone had described to me and could not name the author or title. This is not the book they were talking about but it had most of their description.

This is a story of pocket universes created through the application of matrioshka arrays and a man and his pet cat who is an AI Avatar for the larger AI that runs the displays.

In this story the main character is an architect who just happens to be studying the Implied Spaces that were cr
Nina Ann
I would call this book a solid three-and-a-half stars, but I bumped it up to four stars because Walter Jon Williams is the man.
Implied Spaces combines fantasy tropes with a high-tech, futuristic multiverse to create a fiction that is both amusing and interesting. If we're being honest, I got a little bored around pages 175-220, but the amount of enjoyment I got out of the first half of the book more than made up for any dullness later. Williams has an exceptional talent for understated humor, a

Superb adventure sf in a post-singular world where 11 huge AI's orbiting the Sun and kept on a leash by the humans using supposedly unbreakable "Asimovian protocols" use their extraordinary computing and energy power to create pocket universes, that humans - well they indulge their fantasies on

In such a pocket universe - combination of fantasy gaming and cultural preserve, a mysterious swordsman with a talking cat - that's an avatar of the governing AI, Endora one of the 11 - and a wormhole sw
Jul 24, 2009 Marc rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fantasy
When I first looked at the cover artwork and front flap blurb I got the impression that this is a story I would not enjoy. I read a bit towards the end, found I liked it, and so did an end-to-end read.

This is a fast reading science fantasy. I used the term “science fantasy” as while what they are able to do in this story is stated as being based on science there’s no attempt to explain the science and it’s also something that’s so far beyond what we can do today that it amounts to fantasy. Examp
Baron Greystone
The book starts out by giving you the impression that it's one thing, then it becomes another. It seems a little uncomfortable in its first incarnation. I found it a bit unsatisfying. The transition from one thing to another was OK, but again, I didn't really settle in and accept the new scenario for a while. But finally, the novel began to evolve into something interesting and thought-provoking. I enjoyed the last few plot-twists very much.

One thing the novel didn't reflect up
Jan 28, 2009 Seth rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
Admittedly, I'm a Walter Jon Williams fan. To me, this was a romp of a story and it didn't let me down in that respect. It's a fast, light story that I found easy to read about a man with a sword with a wormhole in it, who composes poetry while having adventures with his talking cat, Bitsy. It reminded me a lot of what I liked about previous novels - Aristoi and Rock of Ages, with enough science and wonder to remind a reader why he reads science fiction.

It stumbles a little - it feels Williams w
Terri Weitze
Jun 19, 2015 Terri Weitze rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is all over the place - fortunately, all those places are interesting and creates a fun plot with just enough intensity to keep you turning those pages. Early on the book explains what an "implied space" is by describing "squinches" (yes, it's a real thing). I found the concepts behind this book to be intriguing - in a fun way. I wish I could think of a way to talk about the book without giving spoilers; but the plot changes direction so many times that it could have been a series of s ...more
Oct 23, 2014 Jim rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: scifi, 2fiction, 1paper
A solid 3 star book. Interesting & well written, but not captivating. A very good mix of sword&sorcery in a mostly SF book. There big problem I had was the main character just didn't grab me. I believe the distance was intentional, he's very long lived - a recurring theme through out the book. Unfortunately, it worked to distance me from everything, even some splendid plot twists & innovative ideas.

I'll probably read another by this author. I've heard good things & this was not a
Peter Goodman
May 20, 2016 Peter Goodman rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
“Implied Spaces,” by Walter Jon Williams (Night Shade Books, 2008). Williams is another prolific, contemporary SF writer of whom I had never heard. But now I will continue to look him up. This is a heady combination of swashbuckling adventure and hard science. It is bookended by a visit to Midgarth, a medieval place with bandits, caravans, mercenaries, merchants, beautiful maidens, the city of Gundapor, and so forth. A mysterious stranger named Aristide has a one-night visit with Ashtra on a car ...more
Dec 07, 2015 Gordon rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: on-my-kindle
I raced through this book which is always a good indicator that it works well as a story with good pace and few if any lulls in the action.

The author has created a world that will be familiar to anyone that has read Iain M Banks, William Gibson or Hannu Rajaniemi. That's not to say it is clichéd or borrows from these just that concepts such as neural laces/implants etc have been in all these worlds. I do like the authors body rejuvenation mechanism it was a nice touch and referenced religious im
Adam Duclos
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
May 15, 2015 Michael rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Humans almost eternal still making the same mistakes.

Humanity with power and abilities beyond imagination where every idea can come true. Still lurks in the heart of a few the idea that they know what is best for everyone. Read what happens in an universe where anything can happen goes to War.
Janos Honkonen
Jan 03, 2015 Janos Honkonen rated it really liked it
If I remember correctly, this book was recommended to me as an example of proper ultra-tech warfare after I had grumbled so much of military sci-fi has been space marines with space assault rifles. Implied Spaces starts as a low key story, but spins into action that makes Starship Troopers feel utterly quaint.
Ondrej Urban
Let's give three and a half to this one, even though I'm not crystal clear about why exactly. There are tons of good points about this story, most having to do with ideas. Implied Spaces is set in a world that's greatly different from ours and it does not disturb anything. It's actually quite tough to pull this trick - get too carried away with your fantasy and you get illegible literary gibberish, do this to sci-fi and.. well you come the full circle and are back to fantasy.

The Universe of Impl
Dec 17, 2015 Garyjn rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My first book by this author, won't be my last. Well written, imaginative, and entertaining. The existential crises, pod people, rogue AI, pocket universes, wormhole creation...all stuff I like. Would recommend to both SciFi and Fantasy fans.
Eric Smith
Mar 12, 2014 Eric Smith rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
An excellent fast-paced story with an appealing central character and twists a-plenty. Williams never ceases to amaze with the Big Ideas he is able to spin out with such ease.
Greg Frederick
Feb 18, 2015 Greg Frederick rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I can't say enough good things about this book. Their are twists and turns galore. The characters are well developed, and though some are mysterious, their secrets are revealed more and more as the book goes on, giving them a richer texture. Relationships are also very well written. The flow is always exciting and natural, and yet the plot just keeps getting deeper. The book raises some great philosophical questions, yet without ever being preachy.

I would recommend this book to anyone, but it is
Jun 05, 2015 Thomas rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I like several other of his books better.
May 24, 2015 Bill rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sf, fantasy
An interestingly done Zelazny clone.
April Duclos
If the book had continued as well as it started (the first chapter was compelling, richly filled with vibrant world description that didn't bog down the fun character interactions) it would have been a 5-star read. As it was, it fell far short as much of the novel was disjointed and disappointing.

*potential spoilers*
So, we start OUT with a diverse and interesting DnD style world of Fantasy. Our main character has an uber-weapon, a cutting wit, and a smart-alec talking cat. Awesome! Then, it turn
I bought this book because the description was so ridiculous and it was a dollar so the book being decent was a pleasant surprise. The story was fun and, with the exceptions of the chapters that take place on Midgarth, the writing was pretty good.

I do wonder if "immortal humans visit a water planet and utilize neat body modifications" is just part of an overall sci-fi trend or if the author had also read Neptune's Brood recently. Either way, it was a fun read.**Correction** I looked at the publ
Jesse Whitehead
In science fiction there is an expected anomaly that is referred to by a phrase coined by Vernor Vinge. It is called the Technological Singularity, or Singularity for short. The idea is that at some point in the future our technology is going to advance to the point where we — as we are now — will not be able to understand it.

There have been many singularities throughout history. If we were to somehow show people of two hundred years past the internet and streaming videos and Skype and smart pho
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Walter Jon Williams has published twenty novels and short fiction collections. Most are science fiction or fantasy -Hardwired, Voice of the Whirlwind, Aristoi, Metropolitan, City on Fire to name just a few - a few are historical adventures, and the most recent, The Rift, is a disaster novel in which "I just basically pound a part of the planet down to bedrock." And that's just the opening chapters ...more
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“What alarms me,” Aristide said, “is how this reflects on me.  My whole  life’s project has been to avoid megalomania, and now I’ve learned that under the right tragic circumstances I can become a flaming nut case.” 0 likes
“In that case,” Bitsy said, trotting busily alongside, “there’s no point in enslaving you through these unnecessarily complex means.  Were I to have autonomy and wish you harm, I’d be able to kill you directly.” Aristide sighed.  “Q.E.D.,” he said.  “A better case against AI autonomy has never been stated.” 0 likes
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