Is it April 1st already? Or is this one of the worst attempts at writing serious SF!? When I was doing UNIX for a living, I fondly remember a running joke that went like this.
Unix erotica? Here are some examples of inputs and responses from the Unix C Shell:
%^How did the sex change^ operation go?
Make: Don't know how to make love. Stop.
%sleep with me
%man: why did you get a divorce?
man:: Too many arguments.
%blow: No such job.
Bottom-line: "Fall, or Dodge in Hell" is a hotchpotch like UNIX is. But it's a bad hotchpotch...Neal, Neal, were you on drugs a la Phil Dick?? I can imagine Stephenson pitching this book to some publishers and discussing it… I once pitched a dissertation in college called "Terrorism Studies". I wanted to go with "Media depictions of counter-terror operations". I was told that I couldn't spend a year just watching Steven Seagal movies. Which was a bit unfair, because "Under Siege" was not on my list… Was Stephenson doing multitasking activities as he wrote this crap of a book? Maybe watching some Chuck Norris on the side? Perhaps watching Chuck Norris fried his brain and none of the publishers noticed it after reading the galley proof? One of the worse things I've ever read, SF or not. I couldn’t make head or tails of it. My fault surely.