Monica 's Reviews > Reamde

Reamde by Neal Stephenson
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really liked it
bookshelves: kindle_fiction, pub_2010s, puppy-squishers

Great book!! Not my usual fair at all. This was a thriller with online gaming undertones. I actually learned quite a bit about the role playing games. Interesting tangents. Characterization was very good. You understood what was in the minds of everyone (except the jihadists. How could the author or anyone sane possibly know what goes on in the minds of jihadist.../sarcasm). This novel had everything I like. Strong characters both male and female, humor and lots of it (particularly around T'Rain), irony; even the ending was somewhat tongue in cheek. The other reviews are very true, Stephenson embraces the info dump...about everything. An around the world tour featuring Russian mobsters, Canadian mines, Chinese hackers, British spies, an African orphan, al Quaeda-esque terrorists, the entire realm of T'Rain, and a pesky computer virus. This was actually an upbeat novel with almost all of the good guys surviving and the bad guys getting their comeuppance. A little too tidy in the end (which is what I attribute to cheekiness or could Stephenson be a hopeless optimist at heart?). I only had two issues with this book. One is that the female characterization in particular is a little weak. Specifically, all three of the main female characters are basically the same person. All are plucky, smart, brave and capable. The only real distinguishing characteristic is their varying levels of sexual permissiveness. But if you are only going to have one type of female character, this is a good one. The other issue is the book is long...very long. It kept my interest and every time I put it down, I wanted to get back to it, but good grief, it took me months to get through. No regrets. All in all, time well spent.

4 stars

Edited to add: The more I think on this, the more I believe there is much satire between the covers. Stephenson is taking some shots at a lot of genres, even the one he is most famous for, cyberpunk. In this case it's through online gaming. Great book, but definitely an investment of time and energy.
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Quotes Monica Liked

Neal Stephenson
“Men wanted to be strong. One way to be strong was to be knowledgeable. In so many areas, it was not possible to be knowledgeable without getting a Ph.D. and doing a postdoc. Guns and hunting provided an out for men who wanted to be know-it-alls but who couldn't afford to spend the first three decades of their lives getting up to speed on quantum mechanics or oncology.”
Neal Stephenson, Reamde

Neal Stephenson
“People wait until they have a need for some history and then they customize it to suit their purposes.”
Neal Stephenson, Reamde

Reading Progress

August 3, 2013 – Shelved
August 3, 2013 – Shelved as: to-read
June 4, 2014 – Started Reading
June 4, 2014 – Shelved as: to-read
June 4, 2014 –
0.0% "Taking a run at this behemoth..."
June 5, 2014 –
1.0% "I'm on page 16 and my kindle says I have 28 hours and 37 minutes to go in this book..."
June 7, 2014 –
3.0% "Good so far. Not especially action packed, but I'm at the very very beginning of a very long book. Reminiscent of the "Deer Hunter" with a lot of slice of life background of what is presumably one of the main characters."
June 11, 2014 – Shelved as: kindle_fiction
June 17, 2014 –
5.0% "Roughly every 10 pages is 1%. I have 32 hours left in the book. Stephenson is often accused of info dumps. Definitely here in the beginning, though not...yet, unwelcome."
June 17, 2014 –
5.0% "Roughly every 10 pages is 1%. I have 32 hours left in the book. Stephenson is often accused of info dumps. Definitely does it here in the beginning about video games, though not(yet) unwelcome..."
June 24, 2014 –
6.0% "Have slowed down reading this at the moment. Trying to get a couple of books ahead as this one will take a while to get through. Will probably resume this weekend."
June 25, 2014 –
9.0% "It will take me a while to get through this. One hour of reading is about 3% of the book. It is good though. Signs point to it getting harder to put down the further I go."
June 29, 2014 –
July 4, 2014 –
July 7, 2014 –
July 11, 2014 –
27.0% "Summer is slow going for me reading-wise. Rather play outside... Good book though. I keep wanting to get back to it, but can only read a few pages at a time and this is a BIG book. Not boring or least not yet..."
July 20, 2014 –
30.0% "Great book but finding time to read is hard. Every time I sit down, it gets better and better. I'm pretty sure I will reach the point where I can't put it down, which is scary because it's a big book. According to Kindle, I still have about 23 hours to go"
July 26, 2014 –
July 28, 2014 –
40.0% "Book is interesting and engaging, but it is long. Reading time is at a premium in the summers and this book though good, is not important enough to take up so much time to get through. I will finish, but one star lost and counting..."
August 1, 2014 –
50.0% "At the 50% mark as well as the hard to put down mark. Books is definitely engrossing. A 5th star is still possible. We'll see how it holds up, but loving the characters and the info dump. No one is sacred, everyone is fair game."
August 3, 2014 –
57.0% "Finally have read more than I have left. Good book but I'm ready to move on to the next..."
August 5, 2014 –
61.0% "Hoping to be done this weekend, though there are still around 400 pages to go. Definitely the last 1000 page book this year..."
August 8, 2014 –
70.0% "Most of the characters are back after spending about 15% of this considerable book on Zula's plight, we are back in the thick of things."
August 10, 2014 –
August 12, 2014 – Finished Reading
April 7, 2018 – Shelved as: pub_2010s
April 26, 2019 – Shelved as: puppy-squishers

Comments Showing 1-3 of 3 (3 new)

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Lori It was long, good, but long. It took me a minute to remember who Richard was by the time that he got back to him. Oh yeah, a main character, he just hasn't come up for a few hundred pages.

It had that bit with a mountain lion and Islamic terrorist with the same result as Nora Jane: A Life in Stories. How many times make a trend?

Lori Heh! To you also 🤗

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