Quicksilver: Volume One of The Baroque Cycle

Front Cover
Harper Collins, 2003 - Fiction - 927 pages
52 Reviews

Neal Stephenson's Quicksilver is here. A monumental literary feat that follows the author's critically acclaimed New York Times bestseller Cryptonomicon, it is history, adventure, science, truth, invention, sex, absurdity, piracy, madness, death, and alchemy. It sweeps across continents and decades with the power of a roaring tornado, upending kings, armies, religious beliefs, and all expectations.

It is the story of Daniel Waterhouse, fearless thinker and conflicted Puritan, pursuing knowledge in the company of the greatest minds of Baroque-era Europe, in a chaotic world where reason wars with the bloody ambitions of the mighty, and where catastrophe, natural or otherwise, can alter the political landscape overnight. It is a chronicle of the breathtaking exploits of "Half-Cocked Jack" Shaftoe -- London street urchin turned swashbuckling adventurer and legendary King of the Vagabonds -- risking life and limb for fortune and love while slowly maddening from the pox ... and Eliza, rescued by Jack from a Turkish harem to become spy, confidante, and pawn of royals in order to reinvent a contentious continent through the newborn power of finance.

A gloriously rich, entertaining, and endlessly inventive novel that brings a remarkable age and its momentous events to vivid life -- a historical epic populated by the likes of Samuel Pepys, Isaac Newton, William of Orange, Benjamin Franklin, and King Louis XIV -- Quicksilver is an extraordinary achievement from one of the most original and important literary talents of our time.

And it's just the beginning ...

 

What people are saying - Write a review

User ratings

5 stars
14
4 stars
18
3 stars
10
2 stars
5
1 star
5

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - bicyclewriter - LibraryThing

OK, in fairness I think some folks will love this author and this story. Reading the reviews ahead of time, it seemed like historical fiction, which I love, and lots of folks do love what he's written ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Larou - LibraryThing

He may be over it by now (as I have not read any of his more recent work), but I’m convinced that at the time he was writing Cryptonomicon and the Baroque Cycle (of which Quicksilver is the first ... Read full review

Contents

Contents
44
House of OrangeNassau
133
Book
340
Book Three
611
Map of Rhine Valley
811
Dramatis Tersonae
917
Copyright

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

About the author (2003)

Neal Stephenson is the author of Reamde, Anathem, and the three-volume historical epic the Baroque Cycle (Quicksilver, The Confusion, and The System of the World), as well as Cryptonomicon, The Diamond Age, Snow Crash, and Zodiac. He lives in Seattle, Washington.

Bibliographic information