Cloud Atlas: A Novel Paperback – 2010
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Top Customer Reviews
“Cloud Atlas” is comprised with six different stories, each of which except the sixth is punctured in the middle with the subsequent one, only to be returned to in the inverse order later on. The book has a form of one-dimensional nested Russian-doll. This is a very clever and technically challenging narrative structure, and with the right kind of material it could have been a real masterpiece. However, in the end I didn’t find this working out all that well. First of all, the stories are VERY loosely related to each other. Their tenuous connection relies more on insinuations, allusions, off-narrative developments, and certain stratagems (reincarnation?) that are never fully and explicitly developed and feel more like deus ex machina ploys than organic plot developments. Furthermore, it was really hard for me to get into most of these stories, with an exception of maybe one and a half of them. They seemed contrived, and it was not easy to start carrying for a whole new set of characters every forty pages or so. And once I did, the stories abruptly broke off, oftentimes at some of the most interesting points. By the time I returned to them, I had mostly forgotten what they were about in the first place, and cared even less about “what happens next.”
Finally, there is the whole issue of language.Read more ›
Built as multiple narratives one into another, each section is quite enjoyable on its own. Although the links between each part sometimes feel a bit stretched and the flow of reading halted by the insertion of yet another narrative (hence my rating of 4 stars vs 5), the total does become more than the parts and makes for excellent reading. Highly recommended.
1. Cloud Atlas is written as a series of short stories, each set in a different time period and location. Each is written in a completely different style. All except for the sixth one are cut off mid-way through and then completed in reverse order.
2. The six stories progress through the ages of civilization from tribal to modern day to a future society that is technologically advanced but completely dystopian to a post-apocalyptic world (which is essentially back to the tribal beginning).
3. Each of the six stories appear in some form in the succeeding story, as letters, novels, films, music, etc.
4. The protagonist in each story is conveniently identified with a comet shaped mole on their shoulder. SPOILER ALERT- They are in fact all reincarnations of each other.
5.The theme of this book is Exploitation of Man by Mankind and does Civilization really make one civilized?
I loved this book! I loved the different characters and the different writing styles that the author used in each of the six stories. Each character and the situation they find themselves in are very different, but each is amazingly well done.
I loved each of the individual stories! They were excellent on their own, but woven into a novel they come together to illustrate Mitchell's theme. Which is man's basic drive to exploit those around him, through every age and every civilization, over and over again.
This is an extremely creative and orginal book and I wholeheartedly recommend it!
Most recent customer reviews
I just recently finished reading Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell, and I highly HIGHLY recommend it. My friend Kyla once described it to me as ‘The perfect novel’, so I immediately... Read morePublished 1 month ago by SharaLee Podolecki
One of the great books I've recently read. Having enjoyed the movie somewhat, I was attracted to the subplots as this story is filled with intricacies that were impossible to... Read morePublished 3 months ago by sam
Loved his new work Bone Clocks.
This is entertaining, but overrated IMHO..
I found this to be a very confusing book. There was a thread and when I found my way back to it I enjoyed what I was reading but for the most part I was having to reread and try... Read morePublished 11 months ago by Michal
Simply brilliant.. Depth, connection, re-connection, progression.Published 12 months ago by Richard McKay
I bought this for my wife last Christmas. She seemed to enjoy it.Published 14 months ago by AlbertaRob
This book is ,in reality, six short stories that are intertwined in devious and interesting ways. The story lines start and stop only to be picked up later in the book. Read morePublished 17 months ago by Bootsy Bass
i actually liked the movie more in some ways. i liked how the movie jumped around more than the book did, but the details/extended story lines in the book were better.Published 19 months ago by Philip mclellan