Home Literature Stories Movies Games Comics News Discussion Forum
  Science Fiction and Fantasy News
Esslemont's Stonewielder Prologue and Cover (07-26)
Deals and Deliveries (9!!!) (09-12)
Iron Man: Femmes Fatales by Robert Greenberger (09-12)
Indiana Jones and the Army of the Dead by Steve Pe (09-12)

Official sffworld Reviews
Big Time, The by Fritz Leiber (05-29 - Book)
Rogue Clone by Steven L. Kent (05-25 - Book)
The Blue Blazes by Chuck Wendig (05-21 - Book)
The Wisdom of the Shire by Noble Smith (05-17 - Book)


Site Index

Book Info    Bookmark and Share

Cryptonomicon by Neal Stephenson

  (26 ratings)

A - B - C - D - E - F - G - H - I - J - K - L - M - N - O - P - Q - R - S - T - U - V - W - X - Y - Z

Rating (26 ratings)
Rate this book
(5 best - 1 worst)
Book Information  
AuthorNeal Stephenson
GenreScience Fiction
Book Reviews / Comments (submitted by readers)
Submitted by Cheryl Fillekes
(Apr 17, 2001)

Cryptonomicon has been compared to Thomas Pynchon's Gravity's Rainbow in book blurbs, but it would be nice to see this line of analysis taken a few steps further. For example, in Gravity's Rainbow there is the theme of the arc of the supersonic rocket, developed throughout. What goes up, must come down -- and this rather crude metaphor is applied to just about everything, including the sexual act and the structure of the book itself. In Cryptonomicon, the theme is coding/decoding. Like Pynchon, Stephenson explores his theme at many levels -- the puzzle of several families across the generations, the puzzle of each man's emotional life and his relations with work and women, pretty much in that order. Each is encoding his future and decoding his past. It has been said that Cryptonomicon fails as a true literary work because the character development isn't "deep enough." Yet, if you look at Gravity's Rainbow, the characters aren't characters at all--they're charicatures! Having spent years writing code, immersed in scientific pursuits, and in the company, primarily, of scientists, engineers and programmers...I have to say that Stephenson actually gets his characterizations just right. When lost in the pursuit of the solution to a problem, it is this quiet moment that defines her. Stephenson captures this moment like no other author I've ever read. The moment, for me, was when Randy had to pretend to decode a message as intelligible but incorrect information for his captors, while decoding the message in a format only he would have acceess to for his own benefit. He had to figure out how to get one message would show up on his screen (which his captors could see) while also decoding the real message in such a way that it would be known only to him. He used shell scripts and the command-line interface to his "Finux" system. This is no shallow techno-thriller with cartoon characters: what Stephenson is saying here is a lot deeper than the literati are giving him credit for.

Sponsor ads



The Terry Pratchett Anywhere But Here, Anywhen But Now First Novel Prize!
05-31 - News
Stephen King's Joyland UK Promotion
05-30 - News
UK Publisher of Stephen King’s New Novel Unusual Promotion
05-30 - News
Big Time, The by Fritz Leiber
05-29 - Book Review
Rogue Clone by Steven L. Kent
05-25 - Book Review
The Blue Blazes by Chuck Wendig
05-21 - Book Review
The Wisdom of the Shire by Noble Smith
05-17 - Book Review

05-10 - News
The Tyrant's Law by Daniel Abraham
05-04 - Book Review
Galaxy's Edge 1 by Mike Resnick
04-28 - Book Review
Poison by Sarah Pinborough
04-21 - Book Review
Bullington, Beukes and Bacigalupi event
04-19 - News
The City by Stella Gemmell
04-17 - Book Review
Promise of Blood by Brian McClellan
04-15 - Book Review
Tarnished Knight by Jack Campbell
04-09 - Book Review
Frank Hampson: Tomorrow Revisited by Alastair Crompton
04-07 - Book Review
The Forever Knight by John Marco
04-01 - Book Review
Book of Sith - Secrets from the Dark Side by Daniel Wallace
03-31 - Book Review
NOS4R2 by Joe Hill
03-25 - Book Review
Fade to Black by Francis Knight
03-13 - Book Review
The Clone Republic by Steven L. Kent
03-12 - Book Review
The Burn Zone by James K. Decker
03-06 - Book Review
A Conspiracy of Alchemists by Liesel Schwarz
03-04 - Book Review
Blood's Pride by Evie Manieri
02-28 - Book Review
Excerpt: River of Stars by Guy Gavriel Kay
02-27 - Article
Tales of Majipoor by Robert Silverberg
02-24 - Book Review
American Elsewhere by Robert Jackson Bennett
02-20 - Book Review
Evie Manieri Guest Post
02-19 - Article
The Grim Company by Luke Scull
02-17 - Book Review
Red Planet by Robert A. Heinlein
02-11 - Book Review

New Forum Posts

About - Advertising - Contact us - RSS - For Authors & Publishers - Contribute / Submit - Privacy Policy - Community Login
Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use. The contents of this webpage are copyright © 1997-2011 sffworld.com. All Rights Reserved.