Ron's Reviews > Anathem

Anathem by Neal Stephenson
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's review
Jul 17, 08

it was amazing
bookshelves: mindblowing, science-fiction, social-satire
Read in July, 2008

Think of it as Stephenson's Foundation Trilogy or maybe his Dune: a huge, sweeping story set on an alien world, which is as much about probing a cultural framework as it is about the narrative gears he sets in motion. That fun Stephenson tic of teasing out the cultural assumptions behind seemingly ordinary actions takes on a whole new twist when it's about a world that is in some ways a funhouse mirror version of our contemporary society -- it allows his gags to have an extra layer of abstraction.

But, for all that, it's a solid story, too. Who'd've thought that Socratic dialoguue could hold such dramatic tension?

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