View Full Version : Currently reading Cryptonomicon, by Neal Stephenson

20-12-2001, 16:32:58
This book is absoloutely superb. Really sarcastic, excellent social observation, gripping drama, an excellent story and he's got a fantastic way of explaining/describing cryptographic theory.
It's over 900 pages long and printed in the smallest font I've yet seen in a paperback, so it should keep me busy for a few more weeks yet!

Anyone read any of his other novels? I'm really impressed with this book .

03-07-2002, 15:44:25
Anyone picked this book up yet? Bloody loved it. Definitely recommend it.

03-07-2002, 16:08:57
I read it aaaaaaaages ago. Good read.

03-07-2002, 16:09:19
I read Snow Crash several years ago. It was very good. Though I had had it described to me as one of the best books ever so I was a little disappointed, but it was very good.

I will be picking up Cryptonomicom at some point soon I am sure.

03-07-2002, 16:14:24
THere's some fantastic observational humour in it - the diatribe on beards and academics, then the "information superhighway" rant around the dinner table are hilarious.

03-07-2002, 16:15:28
And the Captain Crunch scene!

03-07-2002, 16:46:27

08-07-2002, 16:00:40
I have read all his novels and even a nonfiction work on computer operating systems. I am a huge fan and I even got his autograph when he was in Vancouver promoting his book.

The Big U is on of his earliest works but it still has all the trademark Stephenson humour. Some insane things happened during my uni days, but nothing like this!

Another early novel, who's name escapes me right now was dubbed 'an eco thriller' and set in Boston. It was merely good, not up to his usual excellent quality.

Snowcrash was hilarious. This guy can write so well that you don't notice that everything written is in the present tense, which often is hard to pull off. It takes a lot for me to go back and reread a novel, but this one was so exceptional that it got a reread.

The Diamond Age is much more serious. It is set further into the future than Snowcrash and the world he creates is far more believable. Another great book.

Cryptonomicom was superb. He weaves together all the characters and subplots so well. I noticed a reference to a 'true spy', his grandfather, in the first couple of pages before the novel started. Could Neal Stephenson be the grandson of The Man Called Intrepid, Sir William Stephenson, himself?

11-07-2002, 13:08:35
Could be, he certainly knows a lot about spying techniques, cryptography and military espionage during WW2...

30-07-2002, 02:40:42
What a Coinkydink!!?:eek:

I am currently on P.211 of 'Crypto'...

Yes, I too am a fan!:bounce:

The Eco-Thriller is called 'Zodiac'

IIRC he has also written another book under a pen name, except I can't remember what it is off hand...

23-08-2002, 19:54:12
Stephenson is great. Anybody who liked Snow Crash should get Diamond Age as well. Great stuff.

As for Cryptonomicon, though, I think the whole thing would have benefitted from an editor. And a 200 page cut.

And, by damn, Stevenson should be sent back to school till he learns to write proper endings.

24-08-2002, 17:30:57
Originally posted by mumin
As for Cryptonomicon, though, I think the whole thing would have benefitted from an editor. And a 200 page cut.

YEAH! How many typos were in that damned book!!??? It was a long book, but I didn't really have a problem with that...

And, by damn, Stevenson should be sent back to school till he learns to write proper endings. [/B]

What I did have a problem with was how his idea of an ending was just tying together all the characters so that you saw how they were interwoven and left it at that...:(

He writes a book for 900+ pages and then finishes it in, like, ten...:hmm:

It's almost like he thought "Shit, I've written 900+ pages - I'd better end it right now!" And the ending wasn't even a satisfactory conclusion either, as it left so much unsaid...

24-08-2002, 20:47:09
If you're talking about Cryptonomicon, I thought it was pretty apparent he was out fishing for a sequel, which is apparently in the works.

His most enfuriating ending, by far, is in Diamond Age. THe Crypto ending is pure genius by comparison. But then, DA is pure genius all the way throu right up to the end...

27-08-2002, 06:11:52
Huh? I thought both endings (DA and Crypto...) worked well. The main threads are neatly tied together and you can make some surmises about some of the lesser stuff. I don't see Stephenson being to keen on sequels or serial novels.

But I don't like long drawn out endings. Surprise endings or even inconclusive endings like Stanislaw Lem occasionally used can work well.

27-08-2002, 09:30:50
Well, you're entitled to your opinion, of course. Even if it happens to be a minority one, if rasfw is to be belived.

I still think the guy needs to work on his endings. Nothing bad with inconclusive, per se, but I prefer to be able to believe the author actually ment it to come out that way.

24-07-2003, 22:43:30
I just picked up Snow Crash at a local used bookstore. I have read Zodiac and I am looking forward to this one.

24-07-2003, 22:55:32
Wow. A thread over a year old. That's some digging, Jay Sore End! Good thing it wasn't archived, eh?

24-07-2003, 23:07:47
You can call me Jay.

24-07-2003, 23:11:00
And I can call you Ray...

25-07-2003, 10:36:40
Heh, I just borrowed The Diamond Age from a friend. This thread is chock-full of coincidences.

25-07-2003, 15:45:44
And I just finished Snow Crash. I enjoyed it quite a bit. I really the bit when Hiro learns why you don't mess with Raven.

Resource Consumer
25-07-2003, 15:54:22
Corwin - good to see you again. Post more.;)