|Originally posted by SYSTEM-J |
Granted it's pretty funny, and actually had me laughing out loud in a couple of places. But as a story it's absolute amateurism. All that endless tedious info-dumping about Sumerian mythology with absolutely no attempt to integrate it into the narrative, and then at the end what's it all for? After waiting for about 400 pages to find out what the fuck is going in, it turns out it's nothing more than a sub-Bond villain "use mind control to take over the world" scheme which he's crudely attempted to force into some grand link with computer science and linguistics, all of which is complete nonsense. And after 400 fucking pages of trying to figure out what devious web Stephenson must be weaving that will tie together all this bullshit, it turns out it just descends into a crap cartoon action movie complete with deus ex machina resolution.
On a higher level, the whole book is just a glorified self-congratulatory handjob to all the coders and computer mega-geeks. It's all there in that whole passage where Hiro sits up in Da5id's house and Stephenson waxes lyrical about the mundanity of suburban America and how cool and exciting young hackers like Hiro are. What an edgy, badass tribe the code monkeys of 1993 truly were. Hiro Protagonist is a walking amalgamation of geek fantasy, right down to the samurai swords. He's exactly as lethal, handsome, well connected and heroic in the real world as in the Metaverse, thus rendering the latter completely irrelevant in dramatic terms. He has no weaknesses, he encounters no real setbacks, he can acquire whatever he wants and kill anyone he wants whenever the plot demands it. In a book that pokes satirical fun at every single facet of society going, Stephenson hasn't even got one word of self-deprecation for his champion geeks.
I could go on and on. Neuromancer is an actual piece of literature, and a groundbreaking and supremely stylish one at that. Snow Crash is, by comparison, mere fan service.
well admittedly i did read it as a teenager, so maybe my recollections are shit or maybe my taste is just bad . but i liked the libertarian universe and the fact that the snow crash aligned with a game i was playing at the time that used a similar concept. but thanks for your review, that's what i was after