Tuesday, August 19, 2014
I enjoyed this quite a lot. This is the second Stephenson book I've read, the first being Cryptonomicon. On the whole I think I liked this one better. It's more of a pop thriller. The ideas are maybe not as far-reaching, but it was more fun, and I cared more about the characters. It's nearly as long as Cryptonomicon (1000 pages), but follows a single linear timeline, which made it easier for me to keep momentum. I find Stephenson's style growing on me a lot, and I think this book has convinced me to go back and read the rest of his novels. As nerdy as his stories are, there's something surprisingly old fashioned about his storytelling sensibilities—the preposterous coincidences, the indulgent discursions, the sometimes hilariously absurd characterizations. I wasn't quite acclimated to all of this when I read Cryptonomicon, but now that I'm used to it, it's really a lot of fun.