Neal Stephenson is one of those authors that people keep recommending, once they get over the shock that I've never read any before that is. So I decided to jump in, with the massive tome that is Anathem. In hardcover, it's a chunky beast and allows a nice series of weight based exercises if you're reading it on a plane and want to avoid DVT.
Anathem is not an easy read, but one that rewards you if you put in the effort. The effort to understand that Stephenson has made up some new words to replace words for things you already knew. Presumably this is to remind you that this isn't Earth - although he could have just told you that. There aren't many works of fiction that feel they need an introductory 'Note to the Reader' as well as a Glossary and three Appendices. But instead of getting in the way, I actually found I appreciated the extra effort he'd obviously gone to build this whole world around his story.