I just finished Neal Stephenson's Snow Crash last night and I'm torn. I actually enjoyed the book for the most part, but it had some serious problems which destroyed the flow and took you out of the world he created with such care.
First of all, let me tell you about the premise. The idea here is that there is a computer virus that is also a biological virus and someone has discovered this and is using it to his advantage. Now this is all well and good, but instead of working this seamlessly in to the story, he creates this artificial construct (a digital librarian) for one of the protagonists (by the name of Hiro Protagonist -- groan) to talk with about this convoluted idea. I do not like this "discourse" technique, and it disrupts the flow in this otherwise action packed novel.
There are other issues -- some of the blood and guts go too far in my opinion -- but otherwise the concepts he proposes here are interesting. And the thing is, any *one* on the many concepts could have been developed into a great story, but instead he has thrown them all into one novel. Too much.
Hiro -- a sword wielding hacker -- and Y.T. -- a skateboarding courier -- are tough, likeable characters. And the adrenalin filled action scenes are worth slogging through the other stuff, in my opinion.