Thursday, August 16, 2012


I have been wading through Neal Stephenson's novel REAMDE in spare moments at home for about a week. Just finished it.

Oh, yeah! Read this book. It's not science fiction or cyberpunk, it's a thriller, one without any single dashing hero but a whole lot of folks willing to keep on; it's set here and now and you won't be disappointed.

The action is just about non-stop, in the kind of tangled but orderly web Stephenson weaves so well. --And he even gets the guns right!

But that's the least of it. It's a good enough book, I'd've forgiven him pretty serious errors on the fiddly details.

Time and money well spent.

(Hey, have I mentioned Tam has an Amazon link? What a happy coincidence!)

(Turns out I have a spare hardback copy myself -- any interest at half the cover price plus postage? That's like ten bucks and whatever USPS costs to get it to you.)


kishnevi said...

Since I'm much more of a keeg than a geek (think a minute and "keeg" should be fairly suoivbo)--exactly how do I make sure Tam gets credited properly. Go to her wishlist and do a search from there? And how do I make sure the search result is credited to her?

Roberta X said...

I am told that all you have to do -- for anyone with an Amazon Partnership Thingie -- is enter Amazon via their link; it can either be a sidebar or something specific embedded in a post.

Matthew Palen said...

I think Anathem might just be my all-time favorite sci-fi ever. That said, Reamde was awesome.

Roberta X said...

For some reason, I have not yet read Anathem. That will be changing! I devoured Crytptonomicon and the Baroque Cycle and loved The Diamond Age. Stephenson manages to combine lyrical images and turns of phrase with a degree of clarity few writers manage.

Kip Condor said...

Anathem is worth reading, but I thought it kind of fell apart at the end. If I can find my copy, would you be interested in a straight-up swap for your REAMDE?

Roberta X remotely said...

Maybe. Hardback or paperback?

A lot of Stephenson yarns don't have an ending, they just reach a stopping point where most of the story is told. And I'm okay with that -- the journey is the real fun!

Stingray said...

I'm starting to feel like the Loyal Opposition on your book list recs. I've made several runs on REAMDE, and for now it has been consigned to being nibbled on a few pages at a time in the tiny reading room if there isn't a new magazine. The guns are on, but the mmorpg related sections have just enough half-bubble or so off to keep twhaping my ability to Just Go With It It's A Story lightly on the nose.

And making obvious one spot of bias, that I'm deeply geeked into world of warcraft, his tapdancing around and with WoW is not quite as clever as the bits with guns.

At roughly halfway through I'm not without hope, but at that far in I'm growing more dubious that the russian mafia can come up with a compelling reason to invest quite so deeply beyond "Boss is nuts. Roll with it."

Kip Condor said...

RXr: Maybe. Hardback or paperback?

It's hardback, should be in like-new condition.

It wasn't so much that the ending was missing as that I just didn't care for the ending that was there. I didn't mind, though - the rest of the book was utterly compelling.

Charles Pergiel said...

Congratulations on getting the name right. I was calling it Read Me for a few weeks until I finally realized what it really said.

Roberta X said...

Kip: Mine's hardback, too, and should be in good shape. (I'll send you the best one). E-mail me.

Stingray: He kinda tries to hang a lantern on it -- and T'Rain is manifestly (and explicitly) not WoW -- but I have the advantage of not being a gamer.

Trust me that the Russian Mafia is made moot sooner rather than later, and slog on!

(Tam thinks I am hostile to the whole notion, which is not true; as a more-or-less Child Prodigy, I got addicted to online gaming in the days of PLATO terminals and trashed enormous amounts of should-have-been-learning-productive-things time; I recognize it as being like smoking: something I Must Not Do. I don't care if others do it, I just can't dare. I do get irked at having the only TV with a Roku in the same room where she likes to set up for gaming, however.)

Charles: I had been primed by the scambled letter reading thing that made the rounds.. I still had to look thrice.

Stingray said...

If we can get her to use a push-to-talk button, there can easily be peace among our tribes. ;)

I'm between books right now, so I'll give it another charge and see what shakes out.

Roberta X said...

Stingray: PTT? Nope. Wouldn't work for Tam or me to have both things running in the same room. I just need to finish my media systems upgrade, starting with buying a second Roku for my room.

Kip Condor said...

Email sent.

perlhaqr said...

And my best friend Deric was Neal's firearms advisor for it. :) It's a small world.

Roberta X said...

Very kewl!