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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars STARK AND FRESH
Simply put, I loved ORYX AND CRAKE! Despite Atwood's grim futuristic plot of 'science gone mad' I found it difficult to put this book down. The first person narration of Snowman (Jimmy) jumps between the present (a bleak world existing primarily of him and the Crakers) and the past (events leading up to the destruction of humanity) as the details of the plot are...
Published on June 16 2003 by S. Calhoun

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3.0 out of 5 stars An Intriguing Speculative Fiction
Oryx and Crake is the story of Snowman who lives alone in a post-apocalyptic world where the coastal cities of North America are under water, and strange animals roam free. Flashbacks show us how Snowman came to be the last survivor of his kind after an epidemic killed the rest of the human race. At first, I must say that I was a little put off by the main character and...
Published 16 days ago by Cecile Sune


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17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars STARK AND FRESH, June 16 2003
By 
S. Calhoun "rhymeswithorange" (Chicago, IL United States) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Oryx and Crake (Hardcover)
Simply put, I loved ORYX AND CRAKE! Despite Atwood's grim futuristic plot of 'science gone mad' I found it difficult to put this book down. The first person narration of Snowman (Jimmy) jumps between the present (a bleak world existing primarily of him and the Crakers) and the past (events leading up to the destruction of humanity) as the details of the plot are uncovered. I most enjoyed Atwood's fresh writing and awe-inspiring imagination. Although I am not a fan of the science fiction genre I loved reading about Snowman's interpretation of the end of society. Of course ORYX AND CRAKE contains many cautionary tales against gene splicing, corporations, and the power of the Internet (why aren't there any 'happy' books of the future?). Despite Atwood's bleak and dark vision of the future there is much to extract, as science can't eliminate human love and desire. The relationships between Crake, Jimmy, and Oryx are mysterious and convoluted and I wanted to learn more. I appreciated Atwood's ability to tell this tale without filling in all the details for the reader. Much is left to the reader's imagination and I wasn't annoyed by this at all. Without risking giving away anymore of the plot I will end this review by stating that I was left greatly satisfied by ORYX AND CRAKE. I remains a gem on my bookshelf.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not Handmaid's Tale, But Not Bad, June 24 2003
This review is from: Oryx and Crake (Hardcover)
If you love Margaret Atwood and her writing, each time she finishes a book, you wonder how she will ever top it. The Handmaid's Tale, which Oryx and Crake is most frequently compared to, is one of her finest work. I am an ardent Atwood scholar and have read all her works. Having seen mixed reviews in the media about Oryx and Crake, I was somewhat afraid to start reading it, particularly because it is somewhat in the same genre as The Handmaid's Tale (a brilliant book and one of my favorite books of all time.) An author's streak of genius can't last forever, and I was waiting for the sun to set on Margaret Atwood.
This novel isn't as bad as the worst reviews promise, but not as good as the best claim. It's set on an intruiging premise, and although it took a little longer to get engrossed in Oryx and Crake than in some of her other work, it moves along at a nice and quite horrifying trot, pulling you in with the almost-recognizable familiarity of bio-engineered events. You like Snowman/Jimmy, it's just that....well, who exactly is the bad guy here? And maybe that's the point. In today's world, with PR spin and ducking politicians, there is no great antagonist we're struggling against--which would make life much clearer.
I noticed that Atwood's writing seemed a little less compelling, acute and participatory than in previous novels. Perhaps the writing reflects the detachment and bemusement of Snowman himself. Although what happens is shocking, it is relayed in a very methodical, non-emotional way.
The best thing about the book was the last few chapters--they surprised me, causing me to think for a lengthy period of time after I'd closed the book. In fact, that night I had very troubled dreams about the subject matter of destruction and a single person's capability for such in today's advanced world. It's been a long time since a book's premise made it into my dreams, so although it may not have gripped me with iron claws in the beginning, I suppose Oryx and Crake got me in the end.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not my favourite Atwood, but still memorable, June 13 2003
This review is from: Oryx and Crake (Hardcover)
Well, I couldn't put this one down, but at the same time I can't really say that I was entertained by it. What a bleak, miserable and pessimistic future Atwood envisions. Scientifically complex and literally complex, Atwood is raising the all important question of "what if the scientific tools that we have today are misused, and how far down the road do we have to go before things start to go terribly wrong?" I'm a big fan of Atwood's work, but I have to say that this novel is not one of my favourites, although I DID read The Handmaid's Tale years ago and absolutely loved it. Those who say that Oryx and Crake is a science fiction novel are missing the mark; it's actually speculative fiction - taking a world that is familiar to us now and hypothesizing on an incredible outcome. Atwood raised lots of issues in this book - genetics, and gene splicing, sexuality, popular culture, environmental destruction, the existence of god, STD's, diseases, globalization and the fate of human societies. This is not a "heavy" read but certainly a provocative one. I found the preamble with Snowman's encounter with the Crakers a little tedious, but the story really gets going when we start flashing back to Jimmy and Crake. I really liked the way Atwood keeps giving you hints throughout and keeps you wondering what catastrophe actually struck society, and how Snowman ends up in this situation. The scenes when Jimmy goes to work in the Compound are chilling in their realistic detail and it's the sort of story that gives you bad dreams at night!
This is a good read, and also a very depressing vision of our future!
Michael
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5.0 out of 5 stars Good Read, April 6 2014
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This review is from: Oryx and Crake (Paperback)
Better than I thought it would be. The story is compelling and it keeps you wanting to know more until the very end. After which you'll have to read the two sequels to find out what really happens. Great distopian, post-apocalyptic read, with humor & wit woven right in.
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3.0 out of 5 stars An Intriguing Speculative Fiction, April 1 2014
This review is from: Oryx and Crake (Paperback)
Oryx and Crake is the story of Snowman who lives alone in a post-apocalyptic world where the coastal cities of North America are under water, and strange animals roam free. Flashbacks show us how Snowman came to be the last survivor of his kind after an epidemic killed the rest of the human race. At first, I must say that I was a little put off by the main character and narrator, Snowman. I didn’t particularly like him: he is an anti-hero, full of flaws. He is lazy and cowardly, and he doesn’t have much qualms about betraying his friends. But then, as the story progresses, I couldn't help but wonder what I would have done in the same situation. And the scary part of the book is that Margaret Atwood based her speculative fiction on real breakthroughs in genetic engineering. So the future of Oryx and Crake might become our future in a few decades…

Please go to my blog, Cecile Sune - Bookobsessed, if you would like to read more reviews or discover fun facts about books and authors.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Dystopia not so unthinkable, Dec 20 2013
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This review is from: Oryx and Crake (Kindle Edition)
I could not put this book down. Atwood imagines a near future that seems not so impossible. At once dark, funny, tense and tragic.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, Dec 7 2013
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This review is from: Oryx and Crake (Kindle Edition)
I wasn't sure what to expect from this, but read based on reviews from a website I frequent. I found I quite enjoyed it. A great commentary on what can happen when we let technology and genetic modification get out of control.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Like a whole new world and language., Dec 1 2013
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This review is from: Oryx and Crake (Kindle Edition)
Entertaining and very imaginative writing. Constantly using the definitions on my Kindle for those made up words. I'd read more of Margaret Atwood for sure.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Discovering Atwood, Oct. 27 2013
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This review is from: Oryx and Crake (Kindle Edition)
Found this book hard to put down. Atwood's new world brings up some issues that we are going to be dealing with in the future. She calls it Cli-fi, and she has some fun with the english language (anoo yoo). But can recognize trends in our time (botox, entertainment, etc.) that give one pause. Lookimng forward to "the Flood"
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4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting Atwood series, Aug. 2 2013
By 
Rose (Saint John, NB, Canada) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Oryx and Crake (Kindle Edition)
I read Oryx and Crake (book 1) AFTER reading Year of the Flood (book 2). Now that I am finished them both, my opinion is that they are best read this way.
If I hadn't read them backwards, I don't know if I would have gotten through it. O&C is very long and tedious for the first half of the book, but I already knew this world from YotF so it just filled in a lot of back story that I was really curious about.

I thought the story was interesting and the scenarios plausible (in some cases probable). I'm looking forward to book 3 coming out. Since book 1 and 2 both ended at the same place, I wonder if 3 will be another story in the same time as the other 2 or if it will be picking up where they left off??

This series is my first exposure to Margaret Atwood and I am very pleased so far. These two stories didn't suck me in and hold me hostage until I finished, but they did have me thinking about the story when I wasn't actually engaged in the act of reading.
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Oryx and Crake
Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood (Hardcover - April 22 2003)
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