Though this blog might suggest that I am all about eating, yours truely is actually quite an avid book reader too. Surprising now isn’t it? Learn something new everyday, don’t we? So here’s my very first book review, Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson (ISBN – 0553562614). I’ll try to have any spoilers.
from now on, this is how I document who borrowed my books
The setting is the near future of US, or what’s remain of the land that was once called the United States of America. There are interesting concepts that are borrowed from current trends projected a couple dozen years into the future, with appropriate exaggeration and a very strong hint of sacarsm, these includes ultra fast pizza deliveries, parcel services, autonomous city-states in franchise style setup, and so on.
In the alternate reality there is the Metaverse, a kinda MMORPG type of universe that anyone can hang around with an avatar, where rules of physics do not confine anyone with an avatar in it. Center to the story is a virus called Snow Crash that acts both in the metaverse and in reality.
The characters include a katana carrying hacker, named Hiro Protagonist (really), a young girl, YT (Yours Truely), and a host of other interesting characters, such as Raven, who has a nuclear weapon he carries around everywhere, Enzo the head of mafia, Mr. Lee, who owns the Greater Hong Kong franchise, Bob Rife the proprieter of a converted aircraft carrier, and the Rat Thing (a type of cyborg dog) and it’s inventer Ng.
If all these characters sound interesting, it is because they are. You’ll have to read the book to figure out how they fit together in the story. Be aware that as with most cyberpunk, the language can be harsh, and there is one sex scene that might not be appropriate for the overly inhibited individuals.
All in all, this is an excellent book if you are into scifi, especially the cyberpunk genre. Check out other titles by Neal Stephenson too, I have read Diamond Age, and currently finishing Cryptonomicon, a 900+ page story. So far I have found the author to be excellent, the three books are very different from each other in terms of settings and writing style, but yet equally engaging, entertaining, and thought provoking.