Neuromancer -- William Gibson

If The Matrix didn't at least thank William Gibson in their closing credits, then a crime has been committed.  I'm not saying that they're exactly the same, but there's no way that Neuromancer wasn't a huge influence.  If Trinity wasn't a romanticized version of Molly, I'd be extremely surprised.  (And who knows?  Maybe the Wachowski brothers totally thanked William Gibson up, down and sideways.  But I lost interest after seeing the second two movies.  Want to know why?  Because they were crappy, that's why.)

Neuromancer just plain ruled.  At first, especially, it had a real noir feel:

The bartender's smile widened.  His ugliness was the stuff of legend.  In an age of affordable beauty, there was something heraldic about his lack of it.  The antique arm whined as he reached for another mug.  It was a Russian military prosthesis, a seven-function force-feedback manipulator, cased in grubby pink plastic.  "You are too much the artiste, Herr Case."  Ratz grunted; the sound served him as laughter.  He scratched his overhang of white-shirted belly with the pink claw.  "You are the artiste of the slightly funny deal."

"Sure," Case said, and sipped his beer.  "Somebody's gotta be funny around here.  Sure the fuck isn't you."

The whore's giggle went up an octave.

"Isn't you either, sister.  So you vanish, okay?  Zone, he's a close personal friend of mine."

She looked Case in the eye and made the softest possibly spitting sound, her lips barely moving.  But she left.

I've turned into quite the little Gibson-fan this year.