The Confusion is the second book in Neal Stephenson’s excellent Baroque Cycle. Beginning with Quicksilver, this series relates the stories of several historical figures like Isaac Newton and Gottfried Wilhelm Leibniz, as well as fictional characters Daniel Waterhouse, Eliza and Jack Shaftoe. This is a massive work spanning almost 3000 pages. It also requires a bit of hard work to read but it’s definitely worth it.
Snow Crash was my introduction to Neal Stephenson. After reading that I knew I had to read more. Now that I have read two-thirds of The Baroque Cycle he has become one of my favorite authors. There are a few reasons for this, all of which are evident in The Confusion. Stephenson is brilliant, knows how to write, and is one of the wittier authors I’ve read. My only complaint about this novel is that some of the storyline following Eliza is a bit tedious at times, however as I’ve mentioned, every word is worth it.
If you want to know what this series is about you’re better off reading the synopses on Amazon or Wikipedia rather than my describing the plot. It is much too grand and sprawling for me to do justice. But let me say this, you owe it to yourself to read Neal Stephenson.