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Zero History [Kindle Edition]

William Gibson
4.0 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (3 Kundenrezensionen)

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Kindle Edition EUR 7,12  
Kindle Edition, 2. September 2010 EUR 7,89  
Gebundene Ausgabe EUR 26,50  
Taschenbuch EUR 8,40  
Audio CD, Audiobook --  



Zero History is his best yet, a triumph of science fiction as social criticism and adventure."— 

“[Gibson] weaves an unnerving tapestry of technology, violence and anxiety.”—The Daily Telegraph (London)

“Fascinating.”—The Seattle Times

“Uncanny.”—San Antonio Express-News

“Brilliant, entertaining, and bittersweet.”—io9 (

Zero History is another smartly scouted roadmap of alternate routes through today’s global culture, as powered by what a friend of mine used to call the military-industrial-greeting-card complex. It’s a world where cool is king, but also the key to power—and the future.”—Milwaukee Sentinel Journal


Former rock singer Hollis Henry has lost a lot of money in the crash, which means she can't turn down the offer of a job from Hubertus Bigend, sinister Belgian proprietor of mysterious ad agency Blue Ant. Milgrim is working for Bigend too. Bigend admires the ex-addict's linguistic skills and street knowledge so much that he's even paid for his costly rehab. So together Hollis and Milgrim are at the front line of Bigend's attempts to get a slice of the military budget, and they gradually realize he has some very dangerous competitors. Which is not a great thought when you don't much trust your boss either.

Gibson's new novel, set largely in London, spookily captures the paranoia and fear of our post-Crash times.


  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • Dateigröße: 2496 KB
  • Seitenzahl der Print-Ausgabe: 419 Seiten
  • Verlag: Penguin (2. September 2010)
  • Verkauf durch: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • Text-to-Speech (Vorlesemodus): Aktiviert
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Aktiviert
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 4.0 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (3 Kundenrezensionen)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: #219.258 Bezahlt in Kindle-Shop (Siehe Top 100 Bezahlt in Kindle-Shop)

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4.0 von 5 Sternen
4.0 von 5 Sternen
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19 von 23 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
4.0 von 5 Sternen Ja, aber... 30. Oktober 2010
Von _Tobias_
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
William Gibson ist William Gibson ist mehr, als nur Kult. Und mit dem ersten Buch seiner dritten Trilogie - Pattern Recognition - hat er so ganz nebenbei sein absolutes Highlight abgeliefert. Spook Country führte die Geschichte um Werbung, Trends, Graswurzel-Marketing und die Macht des Geldes in der Jetzt-Welt weiter, Zero History schließt die Geschichte ab.

Natürlich ist Hollis Henry wieder dabei, es tauchen vom Vorgänger auch diverse andere bekannte Charaktere auf, und der schale Eindruck eines zweitklassigen Thriller-Versuchs kommt kaum auf. Zero History hat, was Spook Country nicht hatte: Esprit und eine Vision.

Trotzdem schafft es William Gibson nicht, die Geschichte so zwingend wie seine Alt-Werke zu schreiben, oder so faszinierend eine Nebenwelt in der Jetzt-Zeit zu schaffen. Das Problem ist keineswegs das übertrieben Apple-affine Name-Dropping, sondern dass der Geschichte einfach der X-Faktor fehlt. Gibson bleibt ein Wort-Magier, seine Sätze und unübertreffbar schön, präzise, elegant. Doch spätestens, wenn die Geschichte, die die ganze Bigend-Trilogie auflöst, bekannt wird, macht sich ein schaler Beigeschmack breit.

Beschweren auf hohem Niveau, aber von einem William Gibson darf und muss noch mehr erwartet werden.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen Ein tolles völlig unterbewertetes Buch! 6. Januar 2014
Von Meijerdd
Format:Audio CD|Verifizierter Kauf
Ja, in dem Buch geht es tatsächlich um Hosen. Es sagt schon einiges über die heutige Zeit aus, dass es den handelnden Personen nicht um Ideologien sondern um Konsumgüter geht. Das Söldner bereit sind für Hosen zu töten, wäre im letzte Jahrhundert noch völlig unglaubwürdig gewesen.
Ich habe das Buch Ende 2013 gelesen/gehört und mich hat überrascht wie aktuell die Handlung vor dem Hintergrund des NSA-Skandals ist. Ich halte es durchaus für möglich, dass das „hässliche T-Shirt“ wirklich existiert.
Ein tolles Buch um die Gegenwart zu verstehen. Unbedingt lesen!
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0 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
3.0 von 5 Sternen Ein Gibson mit aufdringlicher Werbung 21. März 2013
Format:Taschenbuch|Verifizierter Kauf
Leider wird mein Eindruck von dem Buch stark durch die sehr sehr aufdringliche und aggressive Werbung für Apple-Produkte im Buch getrübt.

Sonst i.O.
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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf (beta) 3.2 von 5 Sternen  178 Rezensionen
89 von 96 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
1.0 von 5 Sternen Weak conclusion to the Bigend trilogy 15. Januar 2011
Von R. Hubbard - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
I have been reading William Gibson for many years and read and enjoyed Pattern Recognition and Spook Country. I was looking forward to Zero History but have come away from it quite disappointed and with the feeling that Gibson missed a real opportunity with this novel. One of the great things about Pattern Recognition was how it capture the stunned, dispirited, paranoid zeitgeist of the world post-911. Zero History had the opportunity to do the same for the post-economic crash world. Instead it focuses exclusively on the meanderings of a few wealthy and privileged hipsters who wander around London and Paris talking on their iPhones. I found the Apple fetishism to really detract from the credibility of these characters as being on the cutting edge of cool, outside the ebb and flow of the normal trends followed by boring people like me. If these characters are going to fetishize some piece of technology couldn't it have been something cooler than an iPhone? I have an iPhone for Pete's sake.

The other big disappointment of this book was the very lazy plotting. The characters are incredibly passive with almost all the action occurring around them while they merely react. Because of this no one does anything to move the plot forward; developments just drop into their laps, primarily due to unlikely coincidences. And therein lies my biggest complaint. Many writers use coincidence to propel a narrative. But in Zero History coincidence is the only driver of the plot. The primary action (if you can call it that) is around Hollis and Milgrim's search for a super-secretive fashion designer. We are supposed to believe that even the great and powerful Bigend can't track this person down and yet, by coincidence, it turns out that every single person Hollis interacts with just happens to know where to find this designer. No spoilers, but by the time this plot line reaches its conclusion the coincidences had started coming so thick and fast it had gotten to the point of being truly ludicrous. And when an element of danger is introduced later in the book another character just happens to be dropping by who knows exactly what to do to diffuse it. How fortunate!

I know some people disliked this book because it was not science fiction or because it was about fashion. I went into it having no problem with either of those points. But 400 pages about passive, unrelatable, unrealistic hipsters with no connection to what's going on in the world right now and really weak plotting made for a very disappointing read. I can't imagine recommending this book to anyone at all.
29 von 29 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
2.0 von 5 Sternen No ideas - just descriptions 20. Februar 2011
Von Matkat - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Kindle Edition
I've been an avid Gibson fan for years, but this novel was very disappointing. I want the old Gibson back - the Gibson who was a brilliant observer of life and culture and made me see things in ways I had not. In this book Gibson follows the path of science fiction hacks who think that description is everything and who add page after page of descriptive fill to their books. I do not care what the brass shower is like in the upscale London club and don't want to read a page of description of it. I do not care about the tea bar in Paris with the two halogen lights shining on a wall of narrow, thin, white shelves with one tea product in each depression and that they don't serve croissants but do serve mini Madelleins (in threes: one chocolate, one almond and one sugar coated). I don't care, I Don't Care, I DON"T CARE!

This book isn't a series of observations about society and how we are effected by it in subtle ways, but a series of detailed descriptions of roads, hotel bathrooms, tea shops, desert plates, armored cars and other uninteresting fill. Instead of a book of ideas, ideas, ideas, Gibson has written a book of descriptions, descriptions, descriptions.
114 von 139 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
3.0 von 5 Sternen Zero Gravitas 21. Oktober 2010
Von Giles Gammage - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
With "Zero History", you get the feeling that William Gibson, finding the world has finally caught up with his Marshall McLuhan-meets-Timothy Leary vision of the future, has decided to escape instead into the world of fantasy.

This accentuates a trend in Mr Gibson's recent novels. Starting with 2003's "Pattern Recognition", the settings of his books have pulled closer and closer to the contemporary world, even as his storylines have pushed further into la-la land. You almost wonder if he's being deliberately perverse. How else to explain "Zero History's" bizarre concoction of macho military fashion designers, ninja rock drummers, Japanese tailors and base-jumping super-spies? And that Mission Impossible-as-done-by-the-A Team ending? Please dear God, let that be a joke.

Don't get me wrong, Mr Gibson remains one of the most effortlessly stylish and readable authors out there. It's his choice of subject matter. I feel like I'm watching Michelangelo doing potato painting.

Let me explain.

"Zero History" completes the trilogy begun with "Pattern Recognition" and continued in 2007's "Spook Country", though it is much more closely tied to the latter. Freelance journalist Hollis Henry returns, again in the employ of insatiably curious marketing bigwig Hubertus Bigend. So is Milgrim, the benzo-addicted translator from "Spook Country", now straight thanks to Bigend's largesse and a stint at a clinic in Switzerland.

Also making a reappearance is the style of "Spook Country", which ratcheted down the flowery language in favor of bare-bones structures, non-linear conversations and off-beat settings. When it works, and it usually does, the words glide effortlessly, supple as old-fashioned denim.

There's a nice touch early on when Hollis googles "Gabriel Hounds" and describes what comes up first--a book by Mary Stewart, a Wikipedia entry, a CD title--because of course that's exactly what comes up if you or I try it, giving you a weird behind-the-looking glass feeling, and lending the story that extra touch of verisimilitude. There's also a reference to a YouTube video of someone jumping from the Burj Khalifa, the world's tallest building. Again, same thing.

Hollis remains something of an enigma, a sort of existentialist hero drawn into absurd events, seemingly lacking the will to extract herself. Milgrim is more sympathetic, an innocent reborn through his detoxification, and not surprisingly he provides the loom that spins this particular story. Bigend remains plausible, a billionaire brat more spoiled than malevolent, but no less dangerous for it. This time, the objective of Bigend's fascination is fashion. Specifically, a cutting-edge guerrilla brand called "Gabriel Hounds", and in a parallel plotline, military outfitting contracts.

Fashion provides Mr Gibson an excuse to revisit his theme, present in both "Pattern Recognition" and "Spook Country", of the tension between the cutting edge and the mainstream, how the former becomes--or desperately seeks to avoid becoming--the latter. The subtext is that the mainstream is derivative, exploitative and false, an elaborate con game. One would-be designer speaks of her dream to escape "the seasons, the b_llsh_t, the stuff that wore out, fell apart."

I might feel better about this subplot if I didn't find the whole premise such an offensive, heaping, steaming pile of Hounds doo. There is nothing inherently superior in cliquey exclusivity or snobbery. I couldn't care less about "secret brands" of canvas shoes or Japanese denim, and as a result, this part just feels tiresome. At one point, Bigend refers to companies that "find brands ... with iconic optics or a viable narrative, buy them, then put out denatured product under the old label." I wish I could say this barrage of pretentious bafflegab is supposed to be indicative of the character, not the author, but Mr Gibson is forever having people spout lines like this.

It didn't use to irritate me. Mr Gibson has always been a bit of a hipster, but it grated far less when he was writing about the far future. Geeking out over the (purely imaginary) "Hawker-Aichi roadster" in 1999's "All Tomorrow's Parties" didn't bug me--the endless iPhone, iMac and Twitter references drive me a little bonkers.

The main plot kicks into gear, and sadly loses touch with reality, when Milgrim's investigation into military clothing upsets a competitor, who first tries to kidnap Hollis and Milgrim, then succeeds in nabbing one of Bigend's other employees (no, I won't spoil it by telling you who, though it's another returning character from "Spook Country") in retaliation. This sets up a rescue that involves the cast of Ocean's 11, conspiracy-theory worthy technology, the makeup effects from Mission Impossible, the camera balloons from "All Tomorrow's Parties", and the martial arts moves from, er, "Rush Hour 3". It's a hopeless, hideous letdown, a bit like the new Gap logo.

I said much the same thing about "Spook Country", and this only confirms it. The more I like Mr Gibson as a storyteller, the less I like the stories he tells. "Zero History" is a beautifully written, vividly imagined, totally preposterous pile of bunk.
201 von 250 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
2.0 von 5 Sternen What's at stake here? 11. November 2010
Von Viking - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Verifizierter Kauf

Bigend: "Hollis!....I need to spend insane amounts of money on vague nothingness!....and you, being a woman of dubious talents and with no grasp of finances, need a job!"

Hollis: "I's true....(pouts)"

Milgrim: "Who?......what?........oh"

Hollis: "I'm being followed...or maybe not...oooo weird wallpaper......why hasn't my boyfriend called?"

Milgrim: "...iPhone..."

Bigend: "Peel me a grape!'s $10,0000!...I need you in Ulan Bator at 25:00 hours!...Something may or may not occur!"

Milgrim: "Who?......what?....will there be snacks?"

Hollis: "He's talking to me.....well, will there?......I mean, okay...(pouts)"

Fiona: "You may be under are cool"

Garreth: "I know a very interesting rich guy....No, you don't get to meet him.....oh, and I watched 2 seasons of The Unit"

Evil Spec Ops Villain (off screen): "I killed an entire Afghani village with a dead I steal fashion designs and forgot everything I ever learned in sniper school"

Secret Clothing Designer: "I am too cool,, sell OUT? know....oh my god..."

Everyone: "Aren't we PRECIOUS!!!.....Hugs all around!"


PS: Huge William Gibson fan, just starting to wonder a bit ; )
13 von 14 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen I completely disagree... 5. März 2011
Von Matthew Clayton - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
with many of the reviews of this book by other readers. The gist of their complaint seems to be that in the "Blue Ant" trilogy Mr. Gibson has strayed from his cyberpunk background into something different that they don't like. While it is true that these last three books are different than Mr. Gibson's early work, why would you expect that they would not be? Certainly no one expected Picasso to keep making blue period paintings, or David Bowie to maintain his Ziggy Stardust character, or Steven Spielberg to keep making action movies about sharks. So to judge this current work in comparison to the author's early work seems short sighted or even naive.

Taken, then, on it's own (or with "Pattern Recognition" and "Spook Country") I very much enjoyed "Zero History". The writing is more descriptive, it's true, but it remains succinct. The story was engaging and Mr. Gibson continues to flash cutting edge tech (rattan bones anyone?) and cool. I can think of very few books I've read (or listened to) over the last several years that have made me laugh out loud, but this one did, twice. Mr. Gibson is probably the only author besides Neal Stephenson that sends me to Google when I get home to see if he's pulling my leg or not. I eagerly await his next work and hope that the next tour brings him back to the Twin Cities, sans major head cold!
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