Reamde is your typical Hacker, MMPORPG, Russian Mafiya, Chinese gold farmer, Eritrean refugee, Islamic Terrorist sect, British espionage agency, American anti-government survivalist, corporate politics, Canadian border crossing, techno-thriller featuring Fantasy authors.
While this might seem like your typical Stephenson novel, impossible to nail down the plot, it is not typical. The plot, while huge and spanning several countries and literary genres, is not the typical Stephenson plot. It is somehow simpler than usual. I know that seems ridiculous considering all of the varied and various elements in the plot as described above, but it is simpler than the typical Stephenson plot. I don't say this as a bad thing necessarily, just as an observation.
As always, Stephenson shows he among the only authors capable of having success with the dreaded "info dump". In his books they are almost always very enjoyable and rarely take away from the narrative drive.
The ending of this book is, while enjoyable, utterly absurd. The sheer number of coincidental near impossibilities converging, unaided by any outside force, on a single obscure area at a particular time (a time not actually known to any of the players) is almost criminally ridiculous. Not to mention the spoilery Dues ex machina* that appears whenever the author has written himself into a corner.
All in all I did very much enjoy the book. I am giving it 4/5, though with a more reasonable ending this could well have been one of my favorite Stephenson books.
Really? a fucking ninja mountain lion? One-goddamned-thousand pages into this goddamned book and you have the balls to have the whole thing sewn up by a Islamic terrorist hating super cougar?