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Shane

Calgary, Alberta, Canada

11
HELPFUL VOTES
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  • Anathem

    • UNABRIDGED (32 hrs and 30 mins)
    • By Neal Stephenson
    • Narrated By Oliver Wyman, Tavia Gilbert, William Dufris, and others
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1822)
    Performance
    (826)
    Story
    (834)

    In celebration of the week-long, once-in-a-decade rite of Apert, the fras and suurs prepare to venture outside the concent's gates - opening them wide at the same time to welcome the curious "extras" in. During his first Apert as a fra, Erasmus eagerly anticipates reconnecting with the landmarks and family he hasn't seen since he was "collected". But before the week is out, both the existence he abandoned and the one he embraced will stand poised on the perilous brink of cataclysmic change.

    Richard says: "Tour de force"
    "More of the same."
    Overall

    I hate to post a review that is going to seem pretty similar to a few of those that came before me, but I have just finished the audiobook, after reading the novel twice.

    Firstly, I felt more engaged in the story due to the audio version, although usually this is not the case for me, I think this is because I paid more attention to the more technical and philosophical parts of the novel that I was able to skip my eyes over if I felt confused or bored while reading, due to this I have come away with a better understanding of a lot of concepts Neal Stephenson has presented, or I guess RE-presented, due to this audiobook.

    Secondly, I totally agree with the disappointment of the novel ending. Not that I disliked the ending, but that it *had* to end. I really loved the world, and the characters in the world. I felt attached to them, a fair amount of them, by the end for sure. The audiobook only helped to enforce these feelings.

    Finally, those who say they are disappointed with the way the story actually ends, this is quite frankly one of the most... complete endings that Neal Stephenson has had to offer. Personally I've liked the way most of his books have ended, but some people just seem to want that neat little tie off. That's usually not how his writing works. This novel had one of the more.. developed endings to his stories.

    But not so developed that there couldn't possibly be a next novel in this world-track? I don't actually think it will happen.. but I think I'd really like it if it did!

    I enjoyed the main narrator mostly, although when it came to the character conveying grief or sadness, it seemed a bit off. But it's a minor quibble in such an overall great job. And it was a nice touch to have Neal read a good portion of the 'The Dictionary' quotes.

    Despite the length, I'm almost tempted to listen all over again, since I enjoy the story as a whole so much.

    11 of 11 people found this review helpful

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