Monday, May 15, 2006

Book review: Cryptonomicon

I've been reading this book forever.

Part of the reason was the 900+ page length, but more important was the fact that I had no drive to pick it up and read it.

Not that Cryptonomicon is a total loss...there are plenty of good qualities about it. To start, it's very interesting. If you are a math geek or a history buff (I'm both), this book contains fascinating and detailed information about cryptanalysis and WWII. Even more importantly, that information is mostly accurate! The author is believeable writing about zeta functions, perl scripts, or the jungle fighting of New Guinea. It's fiction, of course, so the battle to retake Corregidor has been altered drastically to provide a heroic role for one of the main characters, but he weaves together characters and events that actually occurred.

Additionally, it's very funny. When Alan Turing propositions the naive main character at the beginning of the book, his description of the offer made me laugh out loud. The chuckles continue right up to the end.

But the geekiness and the humor just weren't enough to carry me through 900 pages. There's not a single developed character and no real plot to speak of. It's basically a 'slice-of-life' piece with three main characters...interesting slices of life, to be sure, but there's no impending climax driving the reader to turn the next page. There's no connection to any of the characters. I felt nothing as some succeeded wildly and others died heroically.

Cryptonomicon was the best written and funniest history book I've ever read. As a novel, though, I wouldn't recommend it.


At 5:45 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I�ve seen a much tougher opposition than phone sex 900 Let�s see how long she can remain on top.
Can she keep going and compete in two more phone sex 900 Olympics like myself. phone sex 900

At 1:59 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

There is nothing so easy to learn as experience live phone sex and nothing so hard to apply. Thanks for sharing your views. live phone sex


Post a Comment

<< Home