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3.64  ·  Rating details ·  415 ratings  ·  31 reviews
In his acclaimed novels Dr. Adder, The Glass Hammer, and the Blade Runner books, K.W. Jeter masterfully re-created the grim and gritty world of Ridley Scott's classic science fiction film masterpiece.  Now Jeter returns with a startling and stylish new vision of the future as only he could imagine it, a dark and disturbing universe that can be described with one word...  

Paperback, 496 pages
Published September 1st 1999 by Spectra (first published 1998)
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3.64  · 
Rating details
 ·  415 ratings  ·  31 reviews

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Apr 01, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Burning corpses...
Recommended to Alan by: Those Bette Davis eyes
Back at DynaZauber headquarters, he knew, some computer in the accounting department was humming almost silently to itself, deducting the minor cost of the girl's death from the corporation's stock of pollution credits, specifically on the urban misery index. Every year, DZ's PR division planted along the roads enough seedlings—most of which died or grew into no more than toxin-stunted weeds—to more than counterbalance necessary operating deaths. Which proved that the system worked, if you let i
Scott Rhee
Jul 24, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
Remember when cyberpunk was edgy and provocative? I'm talking pre-"Matrix" cyberpunk, the cyberpunk of writers like William Gibson and Bruce Sterling. Back then it was dangerous. Today it's... uh... well, reality. I mean, seriously, who knew that this Internet thing would be so popular? (Besides Gibson et al...) Jeter's novel "Noir" was written near the end of the cyberpunk movement, just before the Internet explosion. Set in a near (enough) future, "Noir" follows an investigator named McNihil ( ...more
Woody Chandler
Jun 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I fell behind in my reviews thanks to the impending end of SY2017-'18. I am currently working as a day-to-day substitute teacher & I get some of my best reading done at work. There is usually 30 minutes of independent reading time built into each school day & so I indulge while the children are reading. As the end of the school year approached, I found myself wanting to read more & type less before the opportunity closed.

I bought this on simply based on its title
Coquille Fleur
Feb 05, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cyberpunk, re-read
K.W. Jeter has a really cool, edgy writing style that makes this cyberpunk tale read like electric poetry. McNihil, the story's main character, has implants in his brain that cause him to see the postmodern world and its inhabitants in the dark and rainy night of a noir movie. I watched the Matrix again while reading this and really noticed the Noir scenes in that movie. This book was published right around the time the Matrix came out. While the stories are quite different, there are similariti ...more
stephan wintner
Jan 31, 2008 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: fans of phillip k. dick
I finished it, but....

This is a pretty wierd thriller, out there with some of the Phillip K. Dick stuff - after reading this I actually wonder if Blade Runner 2 is not just commercial schlock.

Still, unless you really like the surreal I would skip this. The noir thriller wrapped up in the surrealism is not bad but also not great.
Jul 09, 2007 rated it did not like it
I really did not enjoy this book (guess the 1 star makes that clear enough).

There is a fair probability that I am not intellectual enough to enjoy the many subtexts here. If you can call them subtexts. The plot feels like it exists just to exhibit outrageous things masquerading as intelligent comment on issues.

I would only recommend this for people who already know they like Jeter.
Deren Kellogg
Aug 01, 2012 rated it did not like it
This one was effectively disturbing, but I didn't feel like it had anything else. Unlike, say, "Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?" it didn't have the characters or plot necessary to hold my interest. I often enjoy dark novels and stories, but JUST being dark isn't enough.
Sam Reader
Sep 15, 2012 rated it liked it
That's the essence of Noir-- someone's always getting screwed over

There's a delicate balance that needs to be struck between style and substance, especially in genre fiction. Most authors decide to pack their books full of cool ideas and then skimp on the plot, leaving us drawn into their world but with nowhere to go in it*. Others decide to give their plot a few cool details here and there, but most of these small touches are better-remembered than the actual plot of the novel. Noir b
George Siehl
In a collection of academic essays on steampunk, " Like Clockwork," a number of the authors praised Jeter's "Noir." Perhaps it is the rapture of the deep some academic post-modernists hold for the abyss (which is where this book dwells) or the frequent dislike of the business community prevalent on many campuses (this book offers a grossly distorted image of that economic sector) that brings forth such support. He writes, for instance, "What the human-resource managers and company psychs called ...more
Jul 09, 2018 rated it it was ok
I don't get the focus of this book's narrative. On one hand, it's a bit too on the noise with it's title of Noir. There's the hardboiled detective who literally sees the world like a noir movie. And he has a buddy who is an actual author of noir books. They even discuss how things are going to play out according to a formula set up in noir literature.

On the other hand, this is written in a late 90s style. The first chapter is especially difficult to read. It's like the book is so full of itself
Joe Szilvagyi
Jul 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
I will start by saying it's been several years since I read this book but I find the concepts introduced have stuck with me. It's interesting that I can't remember much about the protagonist or the overall story but I still think about the ideas from the book fairly regularly.

One of the big items is the enforcement of copyright infringement through capital punishment. While it's absurd to think of in today's terms, I've grown to believe absurd things can happen in government.

As a whole, the fut
Mike Curtis
Dec 12, 2018 rated it it was ok
"Noir" is a science fiction novel that can generally be classified as cyberpunk. The author tries to ram a lot of different ideas into the book, many of which are really good and are intentionally dark and horrifying. Unfortunately, many of these ideas, along with the characters and key plot elements, do not get fully developed. I can't decide if the book should have been edited down to be 100 pages shorter or expanded to be 100 pages longer. The story as a whole is simply inconsistent and sever ...more
Jul 18, 2017 rated it it was ok
One of the worst sci-fi novels I've ever read.
Scott Holstad
Jun 28, 2018 rated it liked it
Not great, not bad. Not much to say, sorry.
Philippe Lenain
Nov 22, 2016 rated it liked it
Noir de K.W. Jeter

Roman policier-SF, Noir plonge le lecteur dans un futur qui ne parait pas si lointain, où les droits d’auteur ont acquis une importance cruciale au niveau économique. Chacun a désormais acquis le droit de protéger ses œuvres, quelles qu’elles soient. Pourquoi ? Pour protéger toute œuvre, toute création, qui représente le fruit d’un travail, tandis que les pirates se multiplient et que le trafic devient plus présent. Pour lutter contre cela, le « bureau de recouvrement » a été c
I just couldn't finish this. First book in many years I have given up on.
Nathan Burgoine
Jan 19, 2014 rated it it was ok
I tried to get into this, I tried to like it, and I failed miserably. It's a dark future science fiction novel, where the protagonist - and I use the term lightly - is basically a kind of corporate assassin who had a surgical job done on his eyes so that he could "see" everything the way a black and white 20s gumshoe movie would appear. On that level - the world building is fascinating, and you get this strange "half-seen" view of this dystopic future.

The plot is confusing and confounding but no
Jul 17, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: those that like P.K. Dick
Very dark, as the title suggests. If you don't know the meaning of noir don't bother with the book. It follows a story line very similar to the plot of most noir movie thrillers, the detective even sees in black and white with a 50's style visual overlay. Tattoos that spread like viruses, companies that sell and market junk, credit count-downs on our hands, etc... are we there yet? I don't know but we are surely headed in that direction and visa/mastercard/amex executives could find a lot to lik ...more
Feb 22, 2013 rated it it was ok
I wanted to like this book. I dearly love so many things that this book was trying to be: a gritty, hard-boiled detective story set in a dark and unforgiving cyberpunk world. I know it can be done. I've read other books that did it well. But this one seemed to be trying so damn hard to make sure I knew throughout every single sentence that it was what it so desperately wanted to be, that instead it felt like a story wearing an ill-fitting, cartoonish noir costume. In retrospect the title alone s ...more
Feb 20, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Non è sicuramente il libro migliore di questo autore, "Madlands" e "L'addio orizzontale " invece mi sono piaciuti molto. "Noir" parte male con una sfilza di riferimenti ad oggetti del futuro dai nomi misteriosi, una lettura faticosa e frustrante in cui non si capisce niente di quello che leggi, e va avanti così per un buon terzo del libro prima che si riesca in qualche modo ad "entrare" nel mondo del protagonista. Da lì in poi la lettura procede più veloce ma niente di che, una storia deludente.
Jaine Fenn
Oct 10, 2009 rated it it was ok
Perhaps I should write a full review of this book as it elicited strong emotions in me, both good and bad, but it's late and tomorrow I'm off to the Royal Observatory to try and pretend I'm as smart as a bunch of far more interesting people ... plus I'm lazy.

In short: his writing is as amazing as I remember it, his world-building is breathtaking, but the characters were little more than ciphers (perhaps deliberately) and the plot turned on a nasty outbreak of 'unreliable narrator'. And there was
May 16, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favourites, fiction
Per PKD's definition of science fiction as something with "the new idea", this book has it in spades. Jeter's presented so many new ideas, all cleverly intermeshed, that it almost boggles the mind yet doesn't descend in to confusing or coming off as overly complicated. There are two books I try to make room to read every other year, American Gods and Noir.
Lewis Williams
Mar 23, 2010 rated it liked it
I enjoyed Noir but felt like it did not exactly have the most focused final act. Jeter builds an interesting world, then wraps everything up in an ultimately dissatisfying way. I am going to read more of his works soon.
Rich Brown
Apr 26, 2014 rated it did not like it

Nearly gave up on it. Tries too hard; "wears its influences on its sleeve" is a great phrase someone else here used. Feels less like a novel and more like an adjective-laden treatment for a Matrix-wannabe movie I won't be watching.
Nov 11, 2013 rated it really liked it
A great read once you begin to understand the world in which it takes place, The Science Fiction Future of Blade Runner
Nov 12, 2013 rated it did not like it
Dude rambles. A lot.
Apr 16, 2008 marked it as books-i-couldn-t-finish
Not sure if I'm going to be able to finish this one. Can't quite get into it. I'll keep it on my reading shelf for a little while longer, but I don't have a lot of hope.
Jan 25, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: noir, cyberpunk
Pretty decent ending. Most times when you're not enjoying the book, its the book's fault. This novel had a lot going on and may get better with a second read. Gonna have to try other books by Jeter.
Jun 17, 2014 rated it it was ok
Flawed but interesting. Chock full of wacky ideas, and I did enjoy the Dr Adder references. Rather draggy in the middle sections, though.
Jan 13, 2009 rated it really liked it
Dark but fascinating
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Kevin Wayne Jeter (born 1950) is an American science fiction and horror author known for his literary writing style, dark themes, and paranoid, unsympathetic characters. He is also credited with the coining of the term "Steampunk." K. W. has written novels set in the Star Trek and Star Wars universe, and has written three (to date) sequels to Blade Runner.

* Doctor Adder

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“That was McNihil’s own personal theory of how dead knowledge, the knowingness of the dead, worked: they had given up the useless distinctions between themselves and any other thing, so they were open to all the information, raw and unfiltered, in the dead world and the living. A salvageable gum wrapper buried in street muck was as evident to their percept systems as the prick of a knifepoint against their cold skin. It was a characteristic of the dead, to be so well connected, to be wired into everything. Only the living maintained defenses and filters and immune systems, tried to unhook and disconnect themselves from the world; an attempt that was doomed to failure, inasmuch as they would all wind up as ashes or worm food eventually, or at least if they were lucky. But a brave and necessary attempt, regardless.” 0 likes
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