A gripping plot, superbly interwoven threads that come together satisfyingly. Good narrator. The writing is a tad annoying in that it meticulously describes the details of every physical movement, every mechanical device etc. Sometimes this detail is necessary but often it is tedious. However, over all excellently done and very enjoyable.
Stephenson's story is richly complex and complete. The characters were strong. The end a little weak but is something I'm use to with this author who except for that is my favorite.
Narration was very good. Only one word misspoken by my count over 36 hours.
...but very worth it. ;p
I own the hard copy already, but honestly couldn't drag my way through it...but listening made it possible, and for that I'm grateful, as its a great story and I would hate to have missed it.
Increasing my ops tempo by allowing storytellers to whisper in my ear(buds).
What begins as a geek hacker-gamer mystery quickly escalates into a full blown spy thriller with Russian Mobsters, rich (though far from helpless) damsels in distress, and British-born Jihadists. The book is full of great characters and exciting situations. I have enjoyed several other Neal Stephenson novels very much including the farcical and fun Snowcrash the massive Cryptonomicon and his multi-volume exploration of the dawn of the scientific age: The Baroque Cycle. This here is a whole different type of story. REAMDE is akin to a patriotic thriller novel but twice as long and three times more convoluted. The similarity between them all is in the quality of the writing—all are engaging and nicely done. I continue to be impressed, paradoxically, with the variety and consistency of the work of Neal Stephenson.
After a brief period I quickly became accustomed to Malcolm Hillgartner as the voice of REAMDE. He provides great pacing and emotes his various characterization with style and aplomb. Occasionally his characterizations are worthy of a rewind just to hear him turn a phrase in a marvelous accent. Sometimes he fades into the background and the story seems to be emanating directly from your brain. Always he delivers the text better that I could have read it silently to myself.
I felt the book was at least four hours too long. And that was after listening to only three of the five installments - I don't know if there's more baggage, since I had to stop listening.
Black Hills by Dan Simmons
I thought the narrator was good - it was the story, which was punishing, that made me give up. I love Neal Stephenson and Cryptonomicon is absolutely my favorite book ever, but the tedium in Reamde was astounding.
Half of them. Doesn't matter which ones.
I don't know how this rates compared to the other reviews, but I'm a Stephenson fanatic and I couldn't handle how bloated this book was. Either story - the game OR the terrorists/etc. - MIGHT have been a manageable book; both together was far too much.
The imagination to have roll playing game into a story, and the twist and characters it throws up
Big book, lots of moments
I have high expectation when it comes to a Neal Stephenson book and this one hits the mark dead on.
Great character development and the plot works for me because some of it relates to my daily life...not terrorists.
Great performance. I understood every word he said, I think his pronunciation was excellent and his accents weren't too hokey.
Long strange trip.
The book is well worth listening to several times. It's easy to come back to and enjoy again and again. I highly recommend it.
I loved the concept of the story, and while I am not an online gamer, I am tech-savvy enough to spot the realism in the story of T'Rain and the REAMDE antagonist.
What brought the low rating was what appears to be poor plotting on the part of the author. A third of the way into the book, he introduces a new major character and spends much time explaining her background. Would have been much more effective weaving her story in from the beginning and merging her into the main plot at the appropriate time.
After that, the story just seemed to meander, looking for a direction and eventual denouement; the latter of which was obvious several listening hours in advance of it actually happening. Throw in some heroic deeds by the most unlikely of characters, and I was ready for it to end long before hearing, "... we hope you've enjoyed this program."
I did REALLY enjoy Hillgartner's narration, however, and would be happy to listen to his narration again soon.