Snow Crash

(Bantam spectra book)

Paperback, 440 pages

English language

Published Aug. 12, 2000 by Bantam Books.

ISBN:
9780553380958
OCLC Number:
269676828

View on OpenLibrary

4 stars (156 reviews)

Within the Metaverse, Hiro is offered a datafile named Snow Crash by a man named Raven who hints that it is a form of narcotic. Hiro's friend and fellow hacker Da5id views a bitmap image contained in the file which causes his computer to crash and Da5id to suffer brain damage in the real world.

This is the future we now live where all can be brought to life in the metaverse and now all can be taken away. Follow on an adventure with Hiro and YT as they work with the mob to uncover a plot of biblical proportions.

23 editions

a fun re-read

No rating

Just re-read this book, and it's amazing how prescient Stephenson was in 1992. Re-reading gave me a strange combination of nostalgia, hope and fear of how technology can be used. The wide-open possibilities of the early net have been largely foreclosed by commercial interests, but the current implosion of Tw*tter and growing awareness of the dangers of siloed spaces may be creating a renaissance of DIY, distributed and free (as in speech) media. Or it could still move into the hypercapitalist hellscape of Snow Crash. The power is in our hands.

(re-post for experimental reasons)

fun re-read

No rating

Just re-read this book, and it's amazing how prescient Stephenson was in 1992. Re-reading gave me a strange combination of nostalgia, hope and fear of how technology can be used. The wide-open possibilities of the early net have been largely foreclosed by commercial interests, but the current implosion of Tw*tter and growing awareness of the dangers of siloed spaces may be creating a renaissance of DIY, distributed and free (as in speech) media. Or it could still move into the hypercapitalist hellscape of Snow Crash. The power is in our hands.

reviewed Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson

Classic

5 stars

Neal Stephenson is famous for throwing in everything and the kitchen sink.

As this is an earlier work of his, he has put more effort into the story and writing, with so many more ideas than his later work.

Would recommend if you have read his later work. Considered one of the best Sci-fi books of the year by critics when it was released.

Fun Introduction To Stephenson

4 stars

The dates are a total guess; (side note: an annoyance I have on BookWyrm right now is that in order to list a book as read, you have to give exact read dates, which I don't track, especially for a book I read roughly 25 years ago). I enjoyed this a great deal; back at that time the techno-libertarian themes of the book appealed to me, 'Hiro Protagonist' was a cute joke, and there was useful social commentary. It was a fun way to explore things that have now come to be.

Great book, mediocre ending

4 stars

I really liked the story, the characters where good enough and the world the write created was really interesting. The whole "language" angle is my favorite part, really interesting, almost plausible and different enough from what I've read in the past. My main problem is with the ending: too quick, not at the same level as the rest of the story, in my opinion.

Review of 'Snow crash' on 'Storygraph'

5 stars

SNOW CRASH is a cyberpunk fantasy starts with a high-stakes pizza delivery and ends with some cool explosives, taking a path that leads through many burbclaves, at least one cult, and a lot of exposition that relies on fascinations explanations of ancient Sumer to discuss a computer virus that's messing up brains. 

It's using and remixing available stereotypes to their limit to create cartoonishly distilled essences that allow for quick action in the partitioned but not wholly divided setting. There are stark boundary lines all over the place, governing laws, behavior, and life-or-death stakes for everyone within these borders, lit by each Franchise's signage and governed by their franchisee manuals. Where the grooves of life are so well worn around most denizens that they barely notice a disturbance to their routines, unless they’re the protagonist, Hiro Protagonist or perhaps the Kourier Y.T. There's a franchise for most things, and some …

Review of 'Snow Crash' on 'Storygraph'

2 stars

Wrote a whole long review about why I didn't like it, but got bored of my own opinion.

In short:

While clever, the linguistic virus, Sumerian, and religion lessons were long and dull
Characters unbelievable, and didn't really invest in them.
Sex with a minor scene - didn't want that

Did like:
the world
the technology
the prologue bit about pizza delivery. Loved that world building, really great opening! Then the main story wrecked it (for me).

Review of 'Snow crash' on 'GoodReads'

5 stars

I knew nothing of the content of this book coming in, although it's been on my radar to-read for 20 years now. Being late to the party I suspected a somewhat dated cyberpunk hacker expose: similar to Gibson's Neuromancer.

This is true in some sense, although I don't think it dates as poorly as Neuromancer does. There's not a gigantic amount of technical jargon that's fallen out of use (PROM - programmable read-only memory) is perhaps the only concept that kids growing up now wouldn't understand directly (even though we still use it a lot in our daily lives, RFID for example).

What I wasn't expecting was the connections to ancient Sumer, religions and gnosis; language hacking, culture exploration and a whole raft (!) of other tropes tying together to uncover an answer to one of societies oldest questions.

A thrilling ride all in all.

The ending felt a little …

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Subjects

  • Science fiction, American
  • American fiction -- 20th century

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