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Previous BotM--DISCUSSIONS > The Diamond Age: Finished Reading **SPOILERS**

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message 1: by Nick (new)

Nick (doily) | 966 comments Here's a general topic for people who have finished reading The Diamond Age: or, A Young Lady's Illustrated Primer by Neal Stephenson.

Caution: Spoilers are likely in this thread!


message 2: by Kathi, Moderator & Book Lover (new)

Kathi | 3115 comments Mod
I'll jump right in.

I found the first third or so of the book to be hard to get into. This is only my second Stephenson book, the other was Snow Crash. Stephenson is not big on explanations, but eventually I could figure out what some of the terms meant from the context. It was hard for me to get invested in the characters.

But then things picked up and I read the rest of the book rather quickly. Not sure I understood all of it, but I enjoyed it.

Looking forward to seeing what others think.


message 3: by Amanda (new)

Amanda | 69 comments I'm having a hard time with this one. I really enjoyed the other two Stephenson books I've read, Snow Crash and Zodiac, but I just can't get into this one. I'm about 1/4 of the way through.


message 4: by Pickle (new)

Pickle | 202 comments I enjoyed Snow Crash so was initially hooked when i read this. The initial story about bud was had me reminded of Snow Crash then he died.

By half way through i was kind of lost in the plot then finally gave up having no idea what was really going on.


message 5: by Kathi, Moderator & Book Lover (new)

Kathi | 3115 comments Mod
There were storylines I enjoyed and others I couldn't follow, so it was a mixed bag for me. I thought Nell's story was good and pretty comprehensible until near the end. John Hackworth's story, on the other hand, went from mildly interesting to bizarre and boring. I really liked the secondary characters of Dr. X and especially Miranda, the ractor who becomes a mother figure to Nell. My favorites, though, were Judge Fang and his assistants, Chang and Miss Pao. I enjoyed every scene they were in.


message 6: by Shel, Moderator (new)

Shel (shel99) | 2150 comments Mod
It's been several years since I've read it, so my memory is a little fuzzy, but I remember thinking that it was my favorite Stephenson read yet. The beginning was definitely slow - I think one of Stephenson's flaws is that he gets so excited about his worldbuilding that he forgets to move the plot along - but I did get hooked and just loved the idea of the Primer.


message 7: by Justine (new)

Justine (justinejustine) | 563 comments I loved the idea of the Primer and found that the best part of the book. I enjoyed the story right up to the end, at which point I sort of found things a bit incomprehensible. I didn't find the end as satisfying as I would have liked given how much I was enjoying following Nell in particular.


message 8: by Chris, Moderator (new)

Chris (heroncfr) | 502 comments Mod
Just finished the book, and I'll echo many of the other comments. The primer was fascinating, and i thought Nell was a wonderful, strongly drawn character. I found Miranda compelling. But I don't think I understood much of the end. Hackworth's story just got more and more bizarre. Why did Nell decide her destiny was to write scripts for a brothel? What does the Seed represent? And the Drummer, and Dramatis Personae.... Just weird. Overall I'll say I'm glad to have read it, but I am leaving a bit confused.


message 9: by Shel, Moderator (new)

Shel (shel99) | 2150 comments Mod
Chris wrote: "Overall I'll say I'm glad to have read it, but I am leaving a bit confused."

I think I could say that about almost every Stephenson book I've read...


message 10: by Kathi, Moderator & Book Lover (new)

Kathi | 3115 comments Mod
Shel wrote: "Chris wrote: "Overall I'll say I'm glad to have read it, but I am leaving a bit confused."

I think I could say that about almost every Stephenson book I've read..."


I've only read 2 and I'd say that's accurate for me as well.


message 11: by Justine (new)

Justine (justinejustine) | 563 comments I've only read two as well, the other being Seveneves. I have to say I really liked Seveneves a lot. If you like hard SF I would definitely recommend that one.


message 12: by Kathi, Moderator & Book Lover (new)

Kathi | 3115 comments Mod
Justine wrote: "I've only read two as well, the other being Seveneves. I have to say I really liked Seveneves a lot. If you like hard SF I would definitely recommend that one."

The other one I read was Snow Crash. I will read more of him, but probably not right away.


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