Mason, Lisa

Tagged: Author

(1953-    ) US author who began publishing sf with "Arachne" for Omni in December 1987, a tale she expanded into her first novel, Arachne (1990), a tightly composed kitchen-sink narrative set after an earthquake Disaster in San Francisco in Cyberspace, and in the heart of a complex corporate world, with a tough female lawyer as protagonist, a maimed AI personality as trickster and dubious colleague, cyberspace-haunting Avatars representing various humans, and everywhere at risk from AIs longing to acquire unprogrammed human virtues. The sequel, Cyberweb (1995). Mason's immersion in the honeypot culture of California intensifies if anything in her second series, the Zhu Wong sequence comprising Summer of Love (1994) and The Golden Nineties (1995), in which a time traveller (see Time Travel) from the not too distant future spends time with some rather attractive 1960s countercultural San Franciscans, though darker realities loom: the future is due to suffer radical Climate Change and other crises, and the visitor from the future is in fact engaging in a Changewar to save the world. Mason's third series, the Pangaea sequence comprising Pangaea, Book 1: Imperium Without End (1999) and Pangaea, Book 2: Imperium Afire (2000), combines some of the complex interweavings of her first series with the "soft" focus on character that marks her second. Set in an Alternate History version of San Francisco, somewhere fairly deep in the future, the series gradually unveils a punitively Dystopian government, with regimented Sex and a rigid caste system. In the second volume, all falls apart (see End of the World), without a clear resolution. For a dangerously long time, Mason has seemed to be an author about to come into her own. [JC]

Lisa Susan Mason

born 1953

died

works

series

Arachne

  • Arachne (New York: William Morrow, 1990) [Arachne: hb/Alan Craddock]
  • Cyberweb (New York: William Morrow/AvoNova, 1995) [Arachne: hb/Alan Craddock]

Zhu Wong

Pangaea

individual titles

links

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