(An excerpt from the Wikipedia Article)
Neuromancer is a 1984 novel by William Gibson, notable for being the winner of the science-fiction "triple crown" (the Nebula Award, the Philip K. Dick Award, and the Hugo Award). It tells the story of Case, an out-of-work computer hacker hired by an unknown patron to participate in a seemingly impossible crime. The novel examines the concepts of artificial intelligence, virtual reality, genetic engineering, multinational corporations overpowering the traditional nation-state and cyberspace (a computer network called the matrix) long before these ideas became fashionable in popular culture.
Neuromancer is considered "the archetypal cyberpunk work" that legitimized cyberpunk as a mainstream branch of science fiction literature.
The book appeared on Time magazine's list of 100 all-time best English-language novels written since 1923.
The novel has had significant linguistic influence, popularizing terms as cyberspace and ICE. In his afterword to the 2000 re-issue of Neuromancer, fellow author Jack Womack goes as far to suggest that Gibson's vision of cyberspace may have inspired the creation of the internet itself.
Neuromancer is sometimes believed to be the first work to refer to cyberspace as "the matrix" (not capitalized), possibly inspiring the title of the film The Matrix. However, the Doctor Who story The Deadly Assassin introduced its own Matrix in 1976, with substantial similarities.