The System of the World
Finally finished Stephenson’s masterpiece (I think I am justified in calling it that) a few days ago.
I will not go into detail, due to spoilers, but:
It contains one of the most remarkable ‘prison escapes’ I’ve come across in many a year of perusing literature and film.
The moderately-subtle hints about Enoch Root’s nature became blatant in The Confusion, and inescapable in The System of the World… which means I must mentally recategorize the novels from “mostly-accurate historical fiction” to “magical realism”. The introduction of another alchemist only adds to the confusion. (Hee…)
It would seem that a technological society is just an alchemist’s way of staving off boredom.