- Buy this product and stream 90 days of Amazon Music Unlimited for free. E-mail after purchase. Conditions apply. Learn more
Cryptonomicon Paperback – 27 Apr 2000
|New from||Used from|
- Choose from over 13,000 locations across the UK
- Prime members get unlimited deliveries at no additional cost
- Find your preferred location and add it to your address book
- Dispatch to this address when you check out
Special offers and product promotions
Frequently bought together
Customers who viewed this item also viewed
Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
"Cryptonomicon, a novel of such ambition and intensity that most modern fiction looks timid and shallow in comparison..." (Guardian)
"Cryptonomicon was dauntingly vast: brilliant, splenetic, paranoid and beguiling in roughly equal measures... Stephenson's...thrilling fluency" (TLS)
"An audaciously conceived tale of code-making and code-breaking" (New York Times)
"A brilliant patchwork of codebreaking mathematicians and their descendants who are striving to create a data-haven in the Philippines...trust me on this one" (Guardian)
"Pynchon meets Gibson in the biggest novel of the season" (Time Out)
Neal Stephenson hacks into the secret histories of nations and the private obsessions of men, decrypting with dazzling virtuosity the forces that have shaped the past century. Weaving together the cracking of the Axis codes during WWII and the quest to establish a free South East Asian 'data haven' for digital information in the present, Cryptonomicon explores themes of power, information, secrecy and war in the twentieth century in a gripping and page-turning thriller.See all Product description
Customers who bought this item also bought
177 customer reviews
Review this product
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
The style reminds me of those old H. Rider Haggard books like She: an adolescent wet dream with no real characters, but at least you know who the goodies and baddies are. You can see why male computer nerds like this sort of book, where all the beautiful girls end up going out with nerds.
Some other reviewers have compared Cryptonomicon to Thomas Pynchon's books such as Gravity's Rainbow, Against The Day, or V. These share with Cryptonomicon a love of Mathematics and sometimes far-fetched engineering. They also share graphic descriptions of sex.
However, Pynchon is a great novelist, and Stephenson is a competent one. What is the difference?
Partly it is down to the care taken over the authorship. Cryptonomicon has holes in its plot that undermine its credibility: why does Andrew Loeb act the way he does? what is the point of Wing? The name Ferdinand is spelt in Japanese differently every time it is written, and I do not think we can blame the Kindle version for that, though there are plenty of examples of Kindle'ese here, such as 'burnwad'.
Partly it is down to the two-dimensionality of the characters, especially the female ones. I cannot see this book appealing to feminists, or women at all really. It is very hard to see why any of the female characters are attracted to the male ones.
But the great thing about Pynchon is that his books are about something. Not just the plot, but the shape of the plot, the subplots, the nature of the characters, the descriptive passages, even the title -- all resound to the same theme. Cryptonomicon in contrast reads like a collection of different ideas, loosely stapled together.
To summarise, I enjoyed reading the book, kept turning the pages, and especially enjoyed the Appendix. Maybe I'd have been more generous with the stars had the book not been so eclipsed by Thomas Pynchon.
There are some moments of odd interest, those where excessive detailed description is interspersed with weird phantasy in the mind of a cryptological genius, but then it was muddled up in so many threads that I failed to connect it all as I properly should.