The Big U
It's complete and utter crack of the absolute best kind. It is fantastic and ridiculous and terrifying and beautiful and WHAT THE HELL, THIS BOOK.
I love it. I love it so much. Holy god.
This book is very entertaining, despite some very disturbing parts. This book is not nearly as good as Neal Stephenson's subsequent works but it is still entertaining and it really shows his promise. As his first work it is very reminiscent of Hunter S Thompson's first book The Rum Diar ...more
Т.е. это конечно, не фонтастега для умных, где литературным мальчикам там приятно опознавать знакомые буквы, это натурально грубо сляпанный б ...more
Admittedly, I have not read much of Stephenson. I read bits and pieces of 'Snowcrash' but found it a bit boring. I have had 'Anathem' highly reccomended to me but found the thickness a bit intimidating. Therefore I am a novice, untainted by Stephenson's apparent brilliance.
This book is a little gem. A rough, uncut, blinding gem. I love the smooth transitioning into madness. Until pretty much the end, whe ...more
The street outside my restaurant pulsates with life. Fad-adorned hipsters walk up and down the main drag likes it’s a track ducking into local bakeries, cafes, music stores, bars, and eateries. The sidewalks narrow as random guys hold signs offering free advice. Tables are strewn with trinkets for sale. A French hippie carves one-hitters and juggles badly. A wannabe thesbian dresses in crazy outfits and sings and jumps around without rhyme, reason, or tal ...more
The detail and fact finding that Stephenson is known for is all but absent in this book. The only signature Stephens ...more
The New York Times Book Review called Neal Stephenson's most recent novel "electrifying" and "hilarious". but if you want to know Stephenson was doing twenty years before he wrote the epic Cryptonomicon, it's back-to-school time. Back to The Big U, that is, a hilarious send-up of American college life starring after years our of print, The Big U is required reading for anyone interested in the early work of this singular writer.
"An entertaining and sometimes murderous satire on campus...more
However, If you really like Neal Stephenson's books (I do), this one is fun. He has the manic vignettes that truly go off the deep end that characterized his writing in the 90s, but a whole novel full of them, only loosely connected.
This is a satire of a major flagship state uni ...more
That's not to say Stephenson isn't intelligent in his satire or poignant once or twice in 300 pages, but it's just such a bad bad read. Superfluous beyond regard, boring beyond belief, one would rather sit on transatlantic flights next to unchan ...more
Another example of why Goodreads needs to add half stars to the ratings system. The Big U is better than average (3), especially as a 1st novel, but definitely not worth a 4 if I'm going to be consistent with my self-imposed grading system.
That scale is (until Goodreads implements a change):
1 - Really, you killed trees for this?
2 - Bad, but I've read worse...
3 - OK. I won't read again, but it was alright.
4 - Good - I'll read it again some t ...more
I picked up The Big U while I was organizing my library, and I decided to see if I still liked it ten years [at least] since the last time I had read it.
It turns out, I do! For me, this is the perfect college satire, on the same level as Thank You For Smoking or Office Space. I read it when I was an undergraduate, and it was hilarious, and a devastating send up of the bizarre world that is the American university. Ten years later, it is still hilarious and devastating. Then ...more
Over a progression of increasingly strange developments, it becomes something other. Something Lord of the Flies, as various factions of the student body are cut loose fr ...more
For those not up on the Stephenson trivia, it's the author's first published novel and for a long time, he kept it deliberately out of print due to his own dislike of it. He finally relented under fan pressure (apparently copies were going for three-digit sums on eBay and he figured that the only thing worse than people reading The Big U was paying over a hundred dollars for the privilege), and we are given the opportunity to see how good he is at evaluating his ...more
Neal Stephenson has essentially disowned the book, this being his first effort and not up to the Cryptonomicon standard. Personally, I thought it was great. It's still very Stephenson in style, although the scope is smaller than his other books and doesn't go as deep. The Big U is a send-up of large university life, taking every paradigm and sterotype to a hyperbolic extreme ...more
This is a book to read when you want something that is more like "steak" than potatoes. You need to reach in to yourself and also have a decent understanding of the world around you to understand the goings on. I think of the story as a George Orwell style writing. It's deeply symbolic. This novel was recommended by a friend and I admit, I knew ...more
I love all of Neal Stephenson's early novels, but this is my definite favorite. I love Casimir Radon and his misguided qu ...more
It’s a satire of university life, where the university in question is based very loosely on BU; it’s basically BU if everyone lived in a nightmarish dystopian version of Warren Towers.
So we follow a bunch of mostly likable — if pathetic — characters through their travails. And things get odder and odder until a full-scale civil war erupts in the ...more
I found this book fairly disappointing, ...more