Other posts related to neal-stephenson

 | March 9, 2009 12:54 pm

Anathem

What can you say about a Neal Stephenson novel?  Really.  The man is a bit like J.R.R. Tolkien, he feels the need to go out and re-invent the wheel simply because he can.  As a result, no amount of critical analysis, commentary, or old fashioned smack is really able to do his work justice.  If you want to experience a Stephenson novel, you just have to go read it.

So it is with Anathem, a book about a place which isn’t Earth and a time that isn’t now.  Though it certainly feels like both.  Anathem is s a big book which contains big ideas: the observations of classical philosophers, rules of logic, and ultimately a polycosmic theory of connected reality.  You know, light reading.  It’s also a brilliant though extremely frustrating piece which simply defies any attempt at summary.  The first third is spent drowning in detail, the middle third in quiet contemplation, and the last third in monumental disillusion.

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