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Snow Crash

A book by Neal Stephenson

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Wonderfully wacky

  • Sep 11, 2002
  • by
The last great hope of cyberpunk to visit us, and one of the best and funniest, Snow Crash walks on the wild side of fiction, and struts while doing so. From page one you know this isn't a "normal" book: the first description is a pizza delivery man for the mob. If you don't get your pizza in time, the godfather feels that he has lost face, and you are personally visited by the Dom, while the "Deliverator" gets a pair of cement shoes. And that's just the beginning. The hero's name is Hiro Protagonist. It's obvious, it's absurd, but because the author knows not to snicker at his broad pun himself, it works. For this isn't just cyberpunk, although it has all the trappings; this is post-modern satire. And yet, even carrying all that dangerous literary baggage, it's also a roller-coaster ride of an adventure novel. True believers, this one's got everything.

I'm actually a late-comer on touting the pleasures of this novel, and usually I find myself not enjoying things when I'm slow to become culturally on-line with, for the sad fact that I like to be a leader, rather than a follower. But Snow Crash overcomes all that. I wanted to be skeptical, but found it impossible to be skeptical and to be enjoying myself so much at the same time.

There's a macguffin here that the hard SF freaks balk at: the new-age, Babel and Joseph Campbell influenced plot thread. To hell with them. This ain't serio-SF. This is a cross between the most biting Douglas Adams and the most pyrotechnic William Gibson, and if Stephenson feels like he wants to be Robert Anton Wilson as well, I'm willing to follow him.

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More Snow Crash reviews
review by . July 14, 2010
This was a fascinating book. It brings together archeology, psychology, and future technology in one mind wrenching work. The characters are deep and well developed. The character's motives are all very different and complimentary without falling into common stereotypes. There is an undercurrent of dark humor. The story is unique. It is well written and will leave you begging for more. If you have any interest in hidden histories, ancient religions, psychology, or just like gritty renderings …
Quick Tip by . July 05, 2010
futuristic fun!
review by . February 06, 2009
The best words I can think of to describe this is a science fiction novel with attitude. Like if a Sex Pistols fan majored in computer engineering and then wrote about LA in the future.      As I was reading, I had to continually check the copyright date to make sure that I wasn't mistaken and that it was actually published more than 15 years ago. Stephenson is completely spot on with his portrayal of technology and the digital age, it's frightening, mostly because all of that …
About the reviewer
Glen Engel-Cox ()
Ranked #323
Glen is a forty-something communications professional living near Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. He grew up in Texas and has also lived inLos Angeles, Colorado, Washington State, and Washington, DC. Glen also … more
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About this book



ISBN-10: 0553380958
ISBN-13: 978-0553380958
Author: Neal Stephenson
Genre: Science Fiction & Fantasy
Publisher: Spectra (May 2, 2000)
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"Wonderfully wacky"
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