The Quantum Thief
by Hannu Rajaniemi
Gollancz Paperback ISBN/ITEM#: 9780575088887
Date: 30 September 2010 List Price £12.99 Amazon US / Amazon UK /
Uncorrected Proof Copy: One of the 'buzz' titles of this year's Gollancz releases, Edinburgh based Finnish author Hannu Rajaniemi's SF début The Quantum Thief is being hailed as marking the arrival of a major new talent. Due to be released in late September this one has a great 'road to publication' story attached, as Hannu's agent sold the book (in a three book deal) to Gollancz Deputy Publishing Director Simon Spanton on the strength of a single sample chapter - something practically unheard of for a début SF suthor, and certainly in today's difficult market. It must be good!
"Jean le Flambeur is a post-human criminal, mind burglar, confidence artist and trickster. His origins are shrouded in mystery, but his exploits are known throughout the Heterarchy - from breaking into the vast Zeusbrains of the Inner System to steal their thoughts, to stealing rare Earth antiques from the aristocrats of the Moving Cities of Mars. Except that Jean made one mistake. Now he is condemned to play endless variations of a game-theoretic riddle in the vast virtual jail of the Axelrod Archons - the Dilemma Prison - against countless copies of himself. Jean's routine of death, defection and cooperation is upset by the arrival of Mieli and her spidership, Perhonen. She offers him a chance to win back his freedom and the powers of his old self - in exchange for finishing the one heist he never quite managed . . . The Quantum Thief is a dazzling hard SF novel set in the solar system of the far future - a heist novel peopled by bizarre post-humans but powered by very human motives of betrayal, revenge and jealousy. It is a stunning debut. "