Hackers. Dann, Jack and Gardner Dozois, eds. New York: Ace Books, 1996.

Hackers is an eclectic mix of short stories about a techno-subculture called hackers. Most of the stories are written by well known and respected science fiction writers.  Each story is prefaced with a short bio about the author and many of them are authors already on my Lust list. The list of stories is as follows:

  • “Burning Chrome” by William Gibson
  • “Spirit of the Night” by Tom Maddox
  • “Blood Sisters” by Greg Egan (probably my favorite since I would have done the same thing had it been my sister.)
  • “Rock On” by Pat Cadigan (I didn’t get this one at all.)
  • “The Pardoner’s Tale” by Robert Silverberg ~ I liked this one a lot
  • “Living Will” by Alexander Jablokov
  • “Dogfight” by Michael Swanwick and William Gibson
  • “Our Neural Chernobyl” by Bruce Sterling
  • “(Learning About) Sex Machine” by Candas Jane Dorsey
  • “Conversations With Michael” by Daniel Marcus
  • “Gene Wars” by Paul J McAuley
  • “Spew” by Neal Stephenson
  • “Tangents” by Greg Bear (weird!)

Favorite line: From “Living Will” by Alexander Jablokov, “Gerald set his drink down carefully and put his arm around his friend’s shoulders, something he rarely did. And they sat there in the silent study, two old friends stuck at the wrong end of time” (p 111). This story in particular was very human and very sad.

Reason read: October is Computer month. I have to admit it took me some time to get used to words like cybernetic, fiberoptic and simstim.

Best lines, “That was the summer that I finally managed to hack into a Pentagon computer – just an office supplies purchasing system, but Paula was suitably impressed (and neither of us had ever guessed that paperclips were so expensive)” (p 50).

Author Fact: Since there are a bunch of authors I settled on writing about my favorite

Book Trivia: Even though this was compiled in the mid-90s, most of the stories are highly readable even today. the only element of the anthology that was dated was each introduction that introduced the author as “new” to the scene of science fiction writing.

BookLust Twist: From Book Lust in the chapter called “Cyberspace.Com” (p 69).

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