Title: Oryx and Crake
Author: Margaret Atwood
Summary: The narrator of Atwood’s riveting novel calls himself Snowman. When the story opens, he is sleeping in a tree, wearing and old bedsheet, mourning the loss of his beloved Oryx and his best friend Crake, and slowly starving to death. He searches for supplies in a wasteland where insects proliferate and pigoons and wolvogs ravage the pleeblands, where ordinary people once lived, and the Compounds that sheltered the extraordinary. As he tries to piece together what has taken place, the narrative shifts to decades earlier. How did everything fall apart so quickly? Why is he left with nothing but his haunting memories? Alone except for the green-eyed Children of Crake, who think of him as a kind of monster, he explores the answers to theses questions in the double journey he takes - into his own past, and back to Crake’s high-tech bubble-dome, where the Paradice Project unfolded and the world came to grief.
With breathtaking command of her shocking material, and with her customary sharp with and dark humour, Atwood projects us into an outlandish yet wholly believable realm populated by characters who will continue to inhabit our dreams long after the last chapter. This is Margaret Atwood at the absolute peak of her powers.
My Rating: 9/10
What I liked/disliked about the book: Oryx and Crake, is my fourth dystopian themed book I’m reading for the 999 challenge, and it’s safe to say it’s my favourite so far. This is Atwood at her best, containing her wonderful style and talent to tell a story. The narrative was odd, in how it told the reader the story, which is part of why I had a hard time putting the book down, the odd and unusual narrative, from what I normally read, pulled me into the story. I also think it was because the mysterious and captivating story the narrator is tell the reader. Each chapter, each page slowly brings you to what happened to the world, how Snowman receives his name “Snowman” and who are the mysterious Oryx and Crake. It’s a post-apocalyptic world, where you are unsure what has happened, and are forced to keep guessing until the very end. But, that’s what caused me to be unable to set the book down, the passages are haunting, as you slowly learn the truth, and what has happened to this society.
This is different the most novels in it’s genre, because it starts off at the aftermath of the society, what we usually see at the end, then goes back into the past, to tell the story, which is what makes it so interesting. Overall a stunning novel, by one of my favourite authors, and a must read.
Would I recommend it to read: I would recommend the book to read, but because the novel slowly takes you to the conclusion, with little action, some could find it boring. I personally enjoyed that, but I can see some not liking it, but at least give it a try, and take advantage of the fact it’s written by a talented author who brings the reader into an interesting and haunting story. It’s a must read for dystopian fiction fans.
What to read next: 1984, Brave New World, Handmaid's Tale, Fahrenheit 451, The Time Machine. - Word to advice - don't read to many dystopian themed books at once, it starts to depress you.
Challenges: 100+ Challenge, 2nd Canadian Challenge, 2oo9 Support Library Challenge, 999 Challenge