Realware

Rudy Von B. Rucker, Author Eos $14 (320p) ISBN 978-0-380-80877-9
Philip K. Dick Award-winner Rucker (Software; Wetware; Freeware) concludes his satirical SF ""Ware"" tetralogy with this homage to Edwin Abbott's Victorian classic Flatland. Phil Gottner's discovery that his father has apparently been swallowed whole by a ""wowo,"" a multidimensional holographic toy, is the first event in a series that will change his life, and Earth, forever. Phil breaks up with his girlfriend to follow exotic Moon-born Yoke Star-Mydol to Tonga, where she meets a group of aliensDMetamartians from MetamarsDliving deep underwater in the Tonga Trench. It turns out that Yoke's mother, Darla, and a woman named Tempest Plenty were also swallowed by a multidimensional creature on the Moon several months ago. The Metamartians explain that the hungry entity is really their god, Om, who reaches into three-dimensional space to capture humans for study. The gift of an ""alla"" from Om and the aliens allows Yoke to create anything she can visualize using ""realware,"" based on the advanced science of direct matter control. Soon enough, the secret of the alla spreads to others on Earth and predictable problems ensue. Meanwhile, Phil is captured by Om and reunited with his father, as well as with Darla and Tempest Plenty, somewhere in the fourth dimension. Rucker's cheerful ingenuity with biotech gadgetry and applied mathematics is in direct contrast to the book's simplistic plot and resolution. Readers familiar with the previous novels in the series will enjoy the inside jokes, but newcomers may find the lighthearted story lacking in dimension. (June)
Reviewed on: 05/29/2000
Release date: 06/01/2000
Genre: Fiction
Mass Market Paperbound - 320 pages - 978-0-380-80878-6
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