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RIBOFUNK

Di Filippo, Paul.

411 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 1568580622 / ISBN 13: 9781568580623
Published by 4 Walls 8 Windows., NY:, 1996
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HC in dust jacket. 1st Printing. Signed by Di Filippo. A fine copy in a fine dust jacket. Bookseller Inventory # 21382

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Bibliographic Details

Title: RIBOFUNK

Publisher: 4 Walls 8 Windows., NY:

Publication Date: 1996

Signed: Signed by Author(s)

Edition: 1st edition.

About this title

Synopsis:

Following the shock wave of cyberpunk writing in the late 1980s, Paul Di Filippo's first book, The Steampunk Trilogy, burst on the scene in 1995, leading SF veteran William Gibson to declare the young writer's work "spooky, haunting, hilarious." Cyberpunk concentrated on cold hardware. Di Filippo coined "ribofunk" by fusing "ribosome" (as in cellular biology) with "funk" (as in rock and roll). In the world of Ribofunk, biology is a cutting-edge science, where the Protein Police patrol for renegade gene splicers and part-human sea creatures live in Lake Superior, dealing with toxic spills. Ribofunk depicts a sentient river; a sultry bodyguard who happens to be part wolverine; a reluctant thrill seeker who climbs a skyscraper-and finds himself stuck; and a chain-smoking Peter Rabbit who leads his fellows in a bloody rebellion against-whom else?-Mr. McGregor.

Review:

Nebula finalist Paul Di Filippo follows The Steampunk Trilogy, a collection of alternate-history novellas, with Ribofunk, a biotechnological hard-SF collection. As the radical shift of genres may indicate, Ribofunk is astonishingly diverse in subjects and styles, even though its 13 stories make up a future history. Despite the generous number of stories, the book's quality and creativity remain high throughout. In "Brain Wars," a genetically engineered disease afflicts an Antarctic army with enough psychobiological horrors to frighten even the famed neurologist Oliver Sacks. In "The Boot," a 2060s-era private investigator seeks a bio-enhanced thief-gambler who can see the dynamics of chaos and may therefore be able to beat any odds, even those of capture. In "The Bad Splice," the PI finds himself trapped alone in the superseaweed-choked, storm-torn North Atlantic with the diabolical Krazy Kat, a "splice," or genetically engineered animal-man, who has escaped bondage and become a splice-rights terrorist. A few characters recur sporadically, but one appears in every story: the Earth, its biosphere progressively altering with every tale, until the ultimate transformation of the final story, which brings the collection, novel-like, to a tremendous, terrifying, apocalyptic climax.

Few SF writers are as imaginative, energetic, or idea rich as Paul Di Filippo, and fewer still have as broad a knowledge of science and culture. And there's no contemporary SF writer who's more fun to read. --Cynthia Ward

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