Author: Neal Stephenson
Category: Science Fiction
I hate to hate on a book that apparently took so many years in the making but….UUUUGGGHHHH!.
The only other book of Stephenson’s that I have read was Anathem, so I fully expected some longwindedness, but this was a whole other beast. There was so much science-related info-dumping, it was like he forgot how to turn it off in his brain and info-dumped the plot too. Seriously. Huge things that would have been really cool to see play out, at least in one or two scenes, were just like “Oh and then this happened and everybody kinda felt like this about it.” (The one that bugged me the most was Julia’s arrival on Izzy. WTF?)
Nonetheless, I did manage to get somewhat invested in some of the characters. Once most of the science exposition is out of the way (it’s never totally gone, it does rear it’s ugly head now and again throughout the whole book but the first third-first half is the worst), we got a little more story and I kinda got into it. Then BAM! Drop everything about this, jump 5000 years into the future and get ready for some more info-dumping about what happened in those 5 millenia!
That’s not to say that the ideas are terrible. In fact, it’s all actually pretty damn cool. It’s just buried under so much stuff that I had a really hard time enjoying any of it.