Nathan's Reviews > The System of the World

The System of the World by Neal Stephenson
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's review
Jan 18, 2012

really liked it
Read in February, 2009

The final volume of Stephenson's Baroque Cycle, which is set around the year 1700 and has characters ranging from vagabonds to King Louis XIV, from illiterate sailors to Sir Isaac Newton. Lovely writing in this. Not too hard to read (except in metaphysical or scientific passages) but still rather dense and took a long time. Of course, the flip side of lovely writing is that the author has a tendency to let it go on for a bit long, and this is certainly true here - many sections could definitely have used a trim, and the book was overall perhaps 30% bigger than it needed to be. I've really enjoyed these books, but surprisingly I've little inclination to try more of Stephenson's work. Rated MA for adult themes and occasional coarse language. 4/5

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