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Whole Wide World

3.47  ·  Rating Details ·  88 Ratings  ·  15 Reviews
Winner of both the Arthur C. Clarke and Philip K. Dick Awards, Paul McAuley has emerged as one of the most thrilling new talents in science fiction, acclaimed for his richly imagined future worlds as well as for his engrossing stories and vivid, all-too- human characters. Now he gives us a gripping and unforgettable thriller of the day after tomorrow--when the world and th ...more
Hardcover, 399 pages
Published May 17th 2002 by Tor Books (first published May 1st 2002)
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Stylish, Gripping Near Future Crime Cyberpunk Fiction

Raymond Chandler meets William Gibson in one of the finest science fiction novels of recent years, courtesy of acclaimed British science fiction author Paul McAuley. This is more than a film noirish detective novel akin to the best from the likes of Raymond Chandler combined with elements of cyberpunk from William Gibson and his fellow "mirrorshades" cyberpunk fiction scribes. It is a thoughtful, often disturbing, look at surveillance and priv
Michael Battaglia
Writing cutting edge novels depicting the technology of the future and how it will shape the world is always kind of a dicey affair. If you're right then chances are it will be years before anyone hails you as a visionary genius, if they even remember you got it right first. And if you're wrong, then everyone will definitely remember your attempt and make fun of you for being so out of touch, techno-grandpa. The best you can probably do as an author is replicate the feel of what the near future ...more
Dec 10, 2009 Flying_Monkey rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read Whole Wide World twice before I made my mind up about it. The first time I was slightly disappointed to find that an imaginative and visionary author like Paul McAuley had produced what seemed merely a competent technothriller. The second time, the competence was undoubtedly clear, in fact I'd go so far as to say that in terms of pacing, characterisation and plot, this is as good a technothriller as you will find. However it is also far more than a good vacation read - it is also a though ...more
Allan Dyen-Shapiro
After reading McAuley's White Devil's, I was lured into thinking that complexly crafted, parallel stories converging, hard SF post-cyberpunk would be typical of this author. A novel with computers/Internet as the technology--wouldn't that be similar?

It wasn't. In this book, McAuley has set a traditional detective story in the near-future. England, following an Information War, in which cybersecurity and government spying on people is rampant. Had I read this when it came out, the idea of the US
Dec 07, 2008 Mia rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2008, sf-f
The problem with having a near-future thriller set so close to the present, is that the discrepancies between the book's 2010 and the real 2008 become a bit too obvious. However, they are not so glaring that you can't see them as plausible if the intervening couple of years had zigged instead of zagged. Just reinterpret "data spike" as "usb drive" or "SD card" and almost everything still fits. Certainlly, the concerns and issues around the surveillance state, freedom of information, and hypervis ...more
Don Odom
The writing style was frequently repetitive and predictable. Never has a character darted into so many bars for a lager and a cigarette in so few pages. It was if pubs and the attendant pints of lager and cigarettes were the only bridging mechanism that the author knew to employ to move the plot forward. Curiously, some of the technologies - foretold when the book was published in 2002 and projected to come to pass some distance in the future - have already come to pass, such as the functional e ...more
A murder mystery set in the near future. The detective is a heavy drinker and smoker with a secret in his past. The victim is a young woman of questionable morals. This is a noir novel with a heavy dose of Internet. Rather familiar, with a main character I didn't find engaging, and too many supporting characters that didn't support. Not a bad novel, but I can't recommend it.
Aug 11, 2012 Xarah rated it really liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
I really enjoyed the mix of science fiction and mystery. The science fiction aspect was interesting since the technology was just enough in the future to be different, but still close enough that I could believe we'd get it any day now. Adding the murder mystery to the mix was very interesting and fun!
Jun 15, 2009 Matt rated it liked it
Enjoyable near future (as seen from 2001) detective thriller featuring the classic washed-up cop who can't let go of his past or the case that appears to be his last chance to restart his career.

Worth a read if you can get past the tech guesses that didn't quite come off, which are minor and not really that intrusive (I never thought i'd see the word modem again...)
Mar 18, 2009 Peter rated it really liked it
Apart from the occasional laps into Raymond Chandler style narrative and Sweeney style characters, this was an enjoyable book, and could serve as a sombre warning of the perils of our surveillance society and the new "opportunities" it gives to tech savvy criminals.
Brennan Griffin
May 23, 2011 Brennan Griffin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Well-written, near future noir, with a payoff at the end that takes on wider social issues. It made me glad not to live in Britain, with its ubiquitous CCTV network.
May 25, 2014 Larry rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is primarily a pretty good detective story.
It's set in a cyberpunkish near future, with some ripped-from-the-headlines
concerns about privacy and the surveillance state.
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Since about 2000, book jackets have given his name as just Paul McAuley.

A biologist by training, UK science fiction author McAuley writes mostly hard science fiction, dealing with themes such as biotechnology, alternate history/alternate reality, and space travel.

McAuley has also used biotechnology and nanotechnology themes in near-future settings.

Since 2001, he has produced several SF-based tech
More about Paul McAuley...

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