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SNOW CRASH [Paperback]

Neal Stephenson
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (565 customer reviews)

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Kindle Edition --  
School & Library Binding CDN $17.87  
Paperback CDN $12.27  
Paperback, May 1 1992 --  
Mass Market Paperback --  
MP3 CD, Audiobook, MP3 Audio, Unabridged CDN $10.79  

Book Description

May 1 1992 Bantam Spectra Book
In reality, Hiro Protagonist delivers pizza for Uncle Enzo’s CosoNostra Pizza Inc., but in the Metaverse he’s a warrior prince. Plunging headlong into the enigma of a new computer virus that’s striking down hackers everywhere, he races along the neon-lit streets on a search-and-destroy mission for the shadowy virtual villain threatening to bring about infocalypse. Snow Crash is a mind-altering romp through a future America so bizarre, so outrageous…you’ll recognize it immediately.
--This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

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From Amazon

From the opening line of his breakthrough cyberpunk novel Snow Crash, Neal Stephenson plunges the reader into a not-too-distant future. It is a world where the Mafia controls pizza delivery, the United States exists as a patchwork of corporate-franchise city-states, and the Internet--incarnate as the Metaverse--looks something like last year's hype would lead you to believe it should. Enter Hiro Protagonist--hacker, samurai swordsman, and pizza-delivery driver. When his best friend fries his brain on a new designer drug called Snow Crash and his beautiful, brainy ex-girlfriend asks for his help, what's a guy with a name like that to do? He rushes to the rescue. A breakneck-paced 21st-century novel, Snow Crash interweaves everything from Sumerian myth to visions of a postmodern civilization on the brink of collapse. Faster than the speed of television and a whole lot more fun, Snow Crash is the portrayal of a future that is bizarre enough to be plausible. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Publishers Weekly

In California of the near future, when the U.S. is only a "Burbclave" (city-state), the Mafia is just another franchise chain (CosaNostrastet Pizza, Incorporated) and there are no laws to speak of, Hiro Protagonist follows clues from the Bible, ancient Sumer and high technology to help thwart an attempt to take control of civilization--such as it is. When he logs on to Metaverse, an imaginary place entered via computer, Hiro encounters Juanita Marquez, a "radical" Catholic and computer whiz. She warns him off Snow Crash (a street drug named for computer failure) and gives him a file labeled Babel (as in Tower of Babel). Another friend, sp ok/pk Da5id, who ignores Juanita's warning, computer crashes out of Metaverse into the real world, where he physically collapses. Hiro, Juanita, Y.T. (a freewheeling, skateboard-riding courier) and sundry other Burbclave and franchise power figures see some action on the way to finding out who is behind this bizarre "drug" with ancient roots. Although Stephenson ( Zodiac ) provides more Sumerian culture than the story strictly needs (alternating intense activity with scholarship breaks), his imaginative juxtaposition of ancient and futuristic detail could make this a cult favorite.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars FIrst Stephenson read won't be the last Sept. 30 2009
By J. Tobin Garrett TOP 500 REVIEWER
This was my first plunge into the world of Stephenson (I have Cryptonomicon sitting ominously on my shelf), and now I know why people make such a big fuss over him. This book is funny, wildly inventive, action-packed, futuristic, dystopian, philsophical, historical, etc... I was totally sucked into the world and loved the descriptions of the franchised universe in which the characters live, consume, and die in. It was interesting even further when the full mystery began to unravel and Stephenson injected the book with mythology and religious history, which was fascinating and unexpected.

I've been told this is a 'cyberpunk' novel, and I can see why, as the name seems to fit the tone of the book. Punk music, skateboarding, violence, and swords all combined with technology, cars, virtual reality, and computer viruses. Makes for quite an interesting mash of topics.

There were a few times when the characters fell flat for me. I didn't really buy into or care about the romance between Hiro and Juanita; it seemed as though it was thrown in there to make the characters more dynamic, the story more involving, but didn't work for me. Stephenson is a great writer and could be so much better if he created characters that were as three dimensional as his worlds.

What really sold me on the novel was Stephenson's narrative voice: it was so casual and conversational that it was difficult to remember that the novel was written in third person at all. The narrator had such a presence in the book, which was really cool. It was kind of like how David Foster Wallace has his own presence in his books as a narrator, just lurking in the background but constantly there, popping in every once in a while with asides and footnoted information.

I look forward to reading more of Neil Stephenson's work. His futuristic writings, but also his historical writing in the Baroque Trilogy.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Highly entertaining and ahead of its time June 14 2004
Readers of this book need to take into account that it was written between '89 and '91, published in '92. Why? Because so many of his predictions and observations are pretty accurate or close to how things are now. If you didn't realize this, then it would seem cliched and unoriginal. In addition, the book is damn funny, it zips along at a quick pace and the dialogue is sharp and witty. Pick it up at your first opportunity and as soon as you start reading, you'll be hooked....
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Why you should read Snow Crash June 18 2004
You should read this novel if you
1. enjoy a dark vision of the future presented as comedy;
2. appreciate masterful word play;
3. like plots of epic scope and complexity;
4. can live with characters who, while interesting, are not steeped in psychological complexity;
5. are looking for a masterpiece of speculative satire.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Snow Crash Jan. 11 2013
Format:Kindle Edition
This is one of Neil Stephenson's best as far as I'm concerned, which is saying a lot since he is f%*#ing amazing in general. The layered story line mixed with the scientific perspective then crossed with historical references. Exquisite. I think he may be a genius but what do I know, I only know what I like. AWESOMENESS.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Cool and smart! Aug. 25 2012
By Patrick St-Denis TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Given all the rave reviews Neal Stephenson's Snow Crash has received over the years, it's a wonder that the book has been sitting there on my shelf for well over a decade now. I was getting more and more concerned with each passing year, for this work kept receiving such accolades that it raised my expectations to what I felt was an impossible level. I mean, a science fiction novel being selected as one of the 100 books to read in English by Time Magazine? It reached the point where Snow Crash had to be one of the very best books I had ever read, if not the very best, if it had any chance of meeting those lofty expectations.

Understandably, although it is an ambitious, intelligent, and entertaining novel, Snow Crash couldn't possibly live up to my expectations. It is a fun and thrilling read, no question. And yet, as much as I enjoyed it, I don't feel that it's the sort of literary work that lingers within your mind long after you have finished it.

Here's the blurb:

One of Time magazine's 100 all-time best English-language novels.

Only once in a great while does a writer come along who defies comparison—a writer so original he redefines the way we look at the world. Neal Stephenson is such a writer and Snow Crash is such a novel, weaving virtual reality, Sumerian myth, and just about everything in between with a cool, hip cybersensibility to bring us the gigathriller of the information age.

In reality, Hiro Protagonist delivers pizza for Uncle Enzo’s CosoNostra Pizza Inc., but in the Metaverse he’s a warrior prince.
Read more ›
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5.0 out of 5 stars 20 years later and still cool May 3 2012
By Ryan G
This was my first time to read a novel by Stephenson. It actually surpassed my expectations. Some of the ideas in this book are original and highly imaginative, and especially the combining of historical myth with future concepts. I also found this book to be at times hilarious. The interesting thing about Snow Crash is I didn't find it outdated at all 20 years after its release. I can't understand how any of the people who reviewed this book would give it 1 star? I am a fan of SF and cyberpunk and I found this better than anything by Gibson in the last 10 years. I'm already looking forward the Diamond Age and and Cryptonomicon.
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Most recent customer reviews
1.0 out of 5 stars Awful
Disclaimer: Bad english

After playing Deus Ex: Human Revolution and rewatching the Matrix Trilogy, I've desperately been looking for some gritty/noire cyberpunk content... Read more
Published 21 months ago by Koronisz
5.0 out of 5 stars Pizza Delivery & Kourier versus Mind Robbers
Hiro Protagonist is the hero of future twisted world created by Neal Stephenson. Hiro is also the protagonist. Read more
Published on Dec 17 2011 by fastreader
4.0 out of 5 stars Something for everyone to love...and to hate...
By turns frustratingly brilliant and wildly disappointing, this book seems to taunt its readers. It can't make up its mind what it is. Read more
Published on March 10 2006 by Ken Breadner
1.0 out of 5 stars Cyber Trash!! Worst book ever!!
This was the most painful book I have ever read! It is so disjointed, the reader has little or no idea what world the characters are in at any given time. Read more
Published on Oct. 31 2005 by Paul Guibord
1.0 out of 5 stars Maybe I just don't care much for the cyberpunk genre...
...but this has got to be the most disappointing novel I've ever wasted my time on! Okay, so I listened to the audiobook version while I was driving to and from work, and so I was... Read more
Published on July 12 2004 by D. Prince
5.0 out of 5 stars Most entertaining book I've read in a long time.
First off, I read this book in just over 2 days. I quite honestly couldn't put it down - extremely action packed, better than most movies I've seen lately. Read more
Published on June 30 2004
5.0 out of 5 stars Be sure you stop to breathe
Reading this book is like watching an Imax film of Calvin and Hobbes riding their sled. Stephenson manages to combine something old, sonething new, lots of things borrowed, and a... Read more
Published on June 26 2004 by J. Levene
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