Why Neal Stephenson’s New Book is the Best Yet

29 Jun 2015

Neal Stephenson can be a polarizing figure in the Science Fiction and Fantasy reader community. You either got through Quicksilver and Cryptonomicon, or you didn’t. In my opinion, Neal Stephenson’s new book, Seveneves (which, if you hadn’t noticed already, is a palindrome, and thus an awesome title) harkens back to the age of Snow Crash, spinning a tale of science, suspense, and solid characters that is guaranteed to suck you in for all 900 pages.

3 Reasons Why Seveneves is the Best

The Science


Seveneves takes place dominantly in SPACE, and, I mean, who didn’t want to be an astronaut for at least a little while when they were a kid? Also, as a non-science oriented person who wont actually know what is and isn’t feasible, the science in this work of “science fiction” seems absolutely plausible (spoiler: the number of people who die make it particularly believable). Neal spends time explaining real (off)world orbital dynamics, instead of trying to convince you of the real-ness of crazy high tech. I’m sure it doesn’t hurt that his inspiration for the book hit him while he was working with Bezos at Blue Origin.

The Wit


Stephenson has a great sense of humor, and manages to sprinkle it in amongst apocalyptic angst and lengthy explanations of orbital dynamics. Our favorite quip? The one above.

The Words


Stephenson WILL stretch your vocabulary with this book. My favorite new words for this read were:

Debouching (v) : to emerge from a narrow or confined space into a wide, open area

Littoral (adj): the part of a sea, lake or river that is close to the shore

Kaffeetisch (n): an informal social gathering for coffee and conversation

Join the few surviving members of the human race and get Seveneves for yourself today! Already read it? Tweet us at @newinbooks to let us know what you thought!

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Chloe is a Professional Book Nerd. She loves big words, big books, big dogs, and big adventures.