14 September 2008

Anathemetical Impressions

Finished it (Anathem, that is). Didn't take long, despite the length, just a few nights reading till almost dawn. Here are my non-spoiling, completely non-specific to any plot related stuff, impressions regarding this book.

It's a solid bit of work. Clearly, Stephenson was in a bit of a mood when he wrote it (but that's not entirely a bad thing). It's enjoyable if you yourself are a bit of a geek, if you aren't, I think it might not be your cup of tea.

There are many moments of pure theory, just two or more characters hashing out nature of the universe type stuff without seemingly a whole lot of plot movement (but in the case of this novel, all that nature of the universe type stuff is pretty intrinsic to the plot).

I wouldn't mind at all if he revisited this world in another work, either exploring events afterwards, or beforehand.

You'll recognize many of the characters (or at least their 'type') from his other stuff, he's comfortable writing about certain kinds of people, and he writes for them well, but that could be said about most authors, so that's not a criticism of Stephenson, just know that if you haven't enjoyed his work before, you aren't going to find this engaging, but if you've liked his other works, I'm confident you'll finish this book with a smile in your brain.

1 comment:

bill said...

I should finish tonight and will read your impressions tomorrow. One thing I'm wondering is if Stephenson is going even further with the Julian Jaynes theories on consciousness than he did in "Snow Crash."