Last Updated: 2004/12/13
He took a duck in the face at 250 knots.
Cayce Pollard is a 32-year-old woman who has a gift. She perceives "cool". She can tell you what the next trend will be before it breaks out due to her careful examination of the current fashions. She makes a good living with this gift consulting advertising agencies and helping them pick the next big thing. This great gift comes at a price; she is physically allergic to brand logos. Things like Tommy Hilfiger or the Michelin Man tend to make her nauseous. She has to rid herself of this crass commercialism by removing every brand name on everything she owns, from the YKK on her zippers, to the DKNY of her handbags.
During her free time, Cayce observes the "footage" which is a series of short film clips that appear on the Internet. These clips are being created anonymously by someone who obviously has an eye for film. There is no way to tell when or where the film takes place. There are no distinguishing styles, trends, or fashions to determine the film's origin, and it seems that it has acquired a cult following all around the world.
Cayce wakes up in London feeling stoned from jetlag and things only get worse. She goes to a job at an advertising company which she doesn't really like, and it seems the owner there wants her to find out who is creating this mysterious footage. Now she has to mix her pleasure with her pain as she goes all across the world searching for the "maker".
William Gibson has written a very impressive book with Pattern Recognition. Unlike his science fiction books, it takes place the year after the World Trade Center attack on a very familiar Earth. Viewing the world through the eyes of Cayce Pollard is indeed an interesting plight to say the least. Gibson has very interesting word use, often making single word sentences explain what would take a paragraph. The book is rather bitter sweet, but certainly a great read.
There is a song called "Pattern Recognition" by Sonic Youth that was written about this book.
© Copyright 2004-2005: Dean Tersigni. All rights reserved.