Rare Reads at Topsham Public Library discussion

"Cloud Atlas" by David Mitchell

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Topshampubliclibrary | 14 comments Mod
What did you think of the book? Here's a question to get you started:
Which was your favorite tale...and least favorite?

message 2: by Stephanie (new)

Stephanie (stephdoyon) | 1 comments My favorite was the composer's tale (can't remember his name) and my least favorite was Zach'ry's.

I was thinking that another interesting aspect of this book (and there are so many) was the evolution of both written and spoken language. We start with Ewing's overwrought diary and in each consecutive story the language gets a little tighter and more precise. Cavendish loves books, but making a movie is the ultimate prize. Somni's story is a recorded memoir full of corporate jargon that have become mainstream words. We have to wonder if writing even exists at this point. By the time we get to Zach'ry, his story appears to be an oral history, with many of the words being simplified, cut off, or strung together to the point of incoherence.

Topshampubliclibrary | 14 comments Mod
I never thought of that, but you're absolutely right! As the story moves forwards and backwards in time, we not only see different types of texts represented but the evolution of language (both spoken and written). It also makes me think about the theme of things changing but essentially staying the same (as represented by a "Cloud Atlas"). The language changes but we're still able to understand the meaning (for example, "disneys" and "true true").

What did everyone think of the changes/stays the same theme?

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