I've read a bit of Stephenson and enjoyed most - Snow Crash and Diamond Age in particular. I have about 11 hours to go on this one and it's a real chore to listen. If you enjoy listening to extreme details about the most trivial items it might be for you. It has been a very straightforward story and there just isn't anything to make it interesting to me. I see from the reviews that some people love it, so I suppose it is just a matter of taste. It is a lot more like Cryptonomicon and Anathema than Snow Crash or The Diamond Age. The biggest difference is that I liked the characters in Anathema but I won't care if everybody in Reamde dies - the sooner the better actually.
I really enjoyed this book. It was my second in this sort of sub genre behind Ready Player One (which was really great especially if you grew up in the 80's). But this book ended up being less about the video game world and more about how it was the catalyst for a string of events related to terrorism.
And though it dealt with terrosim it wasn't too heavy. You could actually enjoy it and the characters and laugh and root etc. It was a smidge longer than desired but I think because of the numerous international locations and related travel it kind of had to be that way to allow for the plot to develop.
I would recommend.
Loved it! Loved the ingame and out of game settings and unpredictable story line. I found myself walking just a little farther and driving once more around the block because I didn't want to turn it off.
Malcolm Hillgartner constantly impressed me with the diverse accents and voices required for this book. They seemed natural and authentic.
My only criticism is that the ending was abrupt and disappointing, so I felt a little cheated.
If you like thrillers that take you to interesting places, with unique and great characters, give this one a listen!
The game world was a great hook, but the story-telling didn't last. If Stephenson weren't a great writer I would have abandoned the book halfway through.
Reamde blends a Neal Stephenson sci-fi with a Tom Clancy thriller to great effect. The sprawling, globe trotting plot really carries you along. Rarely does over one thousand pages pass so quickly.
The whole Chinese episode in Reamde stands out as a highlight. Although I did love taking the tips to T'Rain.
Unfortunately Malcolm Hillgartner's narration is not terribly varied. He does a fine job but could have defined each of the characters more fully.
It's a book to eat up in big greedy chunks but certainly not one to get through in a single sitting.
Great Detail, Interesting Topics, all tie together wonderfully
It is a long listen and starts slow but really draws you into the story and characters are very well developed.
This book has many touching and also funny places that brought tears and made me laugh out loud.
This novel, like most of Stephenson's, is not easy. I enjoy them, but they tend to be loooong, full of technology-talk, and maybe in need of some serious editing.
However, that's it for my negative comments. I think Stephenson has a genius for explaining technical/mathematical/philosophical/sociological/astronomical/financial/etc. concepts, theories, and applications in a way that allows his non technical/mathematical/etc. readers a glimpse into these difficult to understand fields. The bonus is that he does it in the context of a story, so it's entertaining as well as educational. I have learned to trust his knowledge and believe that he will not make stuff up or make mistakes.
I enjoyed the character performances of the narrator, Malcolm Hillgartner, and found his accents very good to acceptable (in a couple of cases).I was a bit put off by other reviews which trashed his abilities, but I found them either overly critical or just plain wrong.
If you're up for it, and have the time to devote to thought provoking ideas, a pretty good thriller-type story, and a very interesting look into the MMPORG game genre, you have your work cut out for you.
As and avid video gamer, WOW in particular, Stephenson caught me up in his described game in the novel. I wish I could play the game he describes. It surprisingly turns into an international thriller with the game having some real world impact. I wish the game could have been more central to the story, but I really enjoyed it!
Awesome action thriller !
This is a complex but absolutely logical and clever story with fascinating characters. Fast-paced action, funny at times, Surprising twists. Never a boring moment. The most surprising thing about this story was that it really made me wonder if I might not, after all, want to become an online gamer :-)
Perfect performance by the narrator.
I am glad that I had a few days off when listening to this book because I could not put it down. Never have passed 38 hours faster. Excellent book, highly recommended !
I'm a Stephenson fan, despite the fact that he can struggle with endings. However, Reamde doesn't get anywhere near the end before it falls apart. It started out promisingly enough, but once it hit a critical juncture, it took a bizarre twist and just kept going. I was excited to read a Stephenson book so different from his other works, but this one just doesn't work.