Death Cookie/Easy Ice • 2014 • SF story by William Gibson

☆ (no assessment)

Meta: ISFDB. This Near SF short story appeared in the 2014 anthology Twelve Tomorrows, my review here.

Yes, I’m a Gibson fan, read him since his first novels, cyberpunk was everything for me back in the 80s.

An extravagant performance artist goes to an artificial island made of plastic flotsam in Southern Pacific. Only cannibals live there, their extreme body modifications show what technology can do. The artist causes a diplomatic disaster in this micronation.

Having read the story, I simply didn’t understand what Gibson wanted to tell me – and I don’t think a re-read would help. It reads like an excerpt of a book, scratched out in the middle of the context, leaving the background of characters and setting to further explanation within the novel.

But the mysterious world was appealing, so I digged a bit deeper and found out that it is indeed an excerpt of Gibson’s new novel The Peripheral, namely chapters 2 (Death Cookie) and 13 (Easy Ice). One of the stories‘ protagonist – Netherton – seems to play an important role in the novel. I’m going to read that one.

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