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Cloud Atlas
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July 2018: Dystopian > (Decathlon) Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell - 4 stars

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message 1: by annapi (last edited Jul 11, 2018 07:26PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

annapi | 5159 comments Fascinating book. Difficult to describe - it's really six stories strung together with only a tenuous link between them. It's an ingenious way to create a novel from several different stories that really have no connection to each other except as contrived.

But you know what? It works. It holds the reader's attention. Mitchell's prose is wonderful as he builds the atmospheres of each different story, told in completely different voices that weave completely different worlds - or maybe not so different when you look deeper. The guy can definitely write!

I don't know how I would have reacted if I'd not known before hand how this book was constructed, since I saw the movie first. I first picked up the book a few years ago, and dropped it quickly as it did not hold my attention. After I saw the movie my interest was renewed but I never acted on it until this Decathlon buddy reading challenge came along (plus it fits the monthly tag), and now I'm glad I finally finished it. It's quite a quirky read! My buddies on this read are Joanne, Sharon, Idit and Magdalena.

(view spoiler)


Magdalena | 414 comments Very well put review. It really is a hard book to describe! Can't wait to get farther in to this. The writing is amazing.


Michael (mike999) | 569 comments You are right about the structure being a spoiler. When I read it without that knowledge, it was so emotionally upsetting for stories to seemingly end. Always moving forward to the future, with some consolation that things would get better somehow. One gets little rewards of the threads between stories, then finally closure of sorts on each tale. So rewarding to have the sweep across time and genres despite always feeling I was swimming hard to avoid drowning.


annapi | 5159 comments Michael, you put it so much better than I could have!


KateNZ | 2671 comments Great review and I so agree with Michael too.

It’s rare that I see a book as a visual pattern - I usually just go along with the story. But Mitchell constructs this as carefully as any painting - it is pure art. I loved it once I clicked on to what he was doing and semi-squashed my impatience to know what happened ‘next’. Once I finished, I wanted to start it all over again to find all the connections I’d missed. Of which there will be a miserable multitude.


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