In 1942, Lawrence Pritchard Waterhouse - mathematical genius and young Captain in the U.S. Navy - is assigned to detachment 2702. It is an outfit so secret that only a handful of people know it exists, and some of those people have names like Churchill and Roosevelt. The mission of Watrehouse and Detatchment 2702 - commanded by Marine Raider Bobby Shaftoe - is to keep the Nazis ignorant of the fact that Allied Intelligence has cracked the enemy's fabled Enigma code. It is a game, a cryptographic chess match between Waterhouse and his German counterpart, translated into action by the gung-ho Shaftoe and his forces.
Fast-forward to the present, where Waterhouse's crypto-hacker grandson, Randy, is attempting to create a "data haven" in Southeast Asia - a place where encrypted data can be stored and exchanged free of repression and scrutiny. As governments and multinationals attack the endeavor, Randy joins forces with Shaftoe's tough-as-nails grandaughter, Amy, to secretly salvage a sunken Nazi submarine that holds the key to keeping the dream of a data haven afloat.
But soon their scheme brings to light a massive conspiracy, with its roots in Detachment 2702, linked to an unbreakable Nazi code called Arethusa. And it will represent the path to unimaginable riches and a future of personal and digital liberty...or to universal totalitarianism reborn.
A breathtaking tour de force, and Neal Stephenson's most accomplished and affecting work to date, Cryptonomicon is profound and prophetic, hypnotic and hyper-driven, as it leaps forward and back between World War II and the World Wide Web, hinting all the while at a dark day-after-tomorrow. It is a work of great art, thought, and creative daring.
©1999 Neil Stephenson (P)2009 Macmillan Audio
this was painful to listen to - the timeline was confusing jumping from the 40's to people using laptops with no clear bridge between - worst neal stephenson book yet
I really have enjoyed Stephenson’s Science Fiction: Snow Crash, Anathem, The Diamond Age etc.
Cryptonomicon is not Science Fiction. It is a look at past and current technology with the same eye that Stephenson brings to future and alien technology. I have a PhD in Astrophysics, and I know the history of the world war II code breakers, Alan Turing, and in general what math and science geeks are like. I think Stephenson captures the spirit of all of these very well.
I had to wait years for this to come out unabridged in Audible, but I am glad that I waited. The reader is great as well and I can't think of anything I would have wanted left out in an abridged version. Every word is worth hearing.
The book is pretty good, hysterical at times, but why is this book in SciFi section? It has absolutely nothing to do with science Fiction???
this is another excellent audio adaptation of Stephenson. I have read this before, in paper even, and enjoyed it. My enjoyment of the audio is infinitely greater though. The exuberance and humour of Stephenson that comes through in a good reading amazes me every time.
Not only that, but this time around, I am getting all the little "in" jokes as the cast of characters, most of whom are descended from the characters in the Baroque Cycle, take the stage. Of course Cryptocomicon was written many years before the Baroque Cycle, so that makes this referential integrity the more impressive.
Being a Unix admin for the past 15 years this book was a wonderful trip down memory lane intermixed into a wonderful story.
I had got the abridged version of this book a few years ago from audible and like it but felt there was so much missing. Have the full version of the book made things make so much more sense.
I can see why lots of people may have had problems with this book with as much explaining as done on things i think are basic. Being a Dwarf most likely means that those long technical explanation are something I can enjoy. Though it is possible that a none dwarf, elf or wizard would be able to enjoy the book even without have to understand all the technical bits. Not everyone needs to understand the equations on how to sleep with mary as long as Waterhouse understands it.
This book is not for everyone but it can be a good glimpse into the mind or a unix computer geek.
I found this book a bit hard to listen to (& follow) in some places (mostly first 1/4 of book), hence the 4 star rating. I found this book absolutely hilarious in a lot of places, but completely enjoyable overall
Just not my cup of tea I guess. I was really thrown off by the prolific swearing all the time. It was also pretty sexually charged. (IMHO)
well, at least the first 10 hours, and that's as much time as I'm going to invest in it. I spent the credit since I have read the author before (Snow Crash and The Diamond Age) and loved those two books. This book has none of that flavor. It read like sitting through those black and white 1950s-60s stylized war movies my dad loves. Purely painful.
I see that I'm in the minority in my dislike of this novel, but it sure does make me wish audible had a return policy.
I tried. I really did. But this is one of the worst books I've ever tried to read/listen to. So boring. Stephenson thinks very highly of his writing. The problem is he's not a very good writer. You'd think with a book this long he'd stumble onto some character development. Instead he gets wrapped up in minuscule details. This really needed an editor to cut out the fat. Maybe this book could have been salvaged. Maybe.
There are no listener reviews for this title yet.
Report Inappropriate Content