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Cloud Atlas

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Cloud Atlas Cover

ISBN13: 9780340822784
ISBN10: 0340822783
All Product Details

 

Awards

Winner of The Morning News 2005 Tournament of Books

Staff Pick

While it was hard to narrow down my list to just five "best of" picks, I didn't have to think twice about what would be my favorite book of the year. In Cloud Atlas Mitchell again uses the format of connecting short stories with recurring motifs into a larger, almost epic narrative that spans the globe and centuries of human history. Filled with wonderful characters, effortless shifts in style, and more imagination than you can shake a stick at, Cloud Atlas will be a tough book for its author to top. Personally, I cannot wait to see him try.
Recommended by Gerry, Powells.com

For readers who enjoy good stories wrapped around an inventive structure. Each tale is obliquely connected to another moving forward through time. And each has a totally different voice and style.
Recommended by Rhonda, Powells.com

If you haven't read David Mitchell's previous novels, let Cloud Atlas be your introduction to his incredible imagination. Here six convincing and wonderfully realized worlds, filled with surprise and originality, loosely intermingle. Each story, inhabited with equally compelling characters, proves the genius of this amazingly gifted writer.
Recommended by Michal D., Powells.com

Review-A-Day

"David Mitchell is a spookily protean writer. His favored technique — he used it in his first novel, Ghostwritten — is to build a long narrative out of shorter ones, stories told in vastly different voices and styles, then cinch the whole patchwork together with some supernal device that reveals their underlying connections. In Ghostwritten, he couldn't manage to pull off that final, unifying gesture, but his third novel, Cloud Atlas, is far more convincing, a genuine and thoroughly entertaining literary puzzle." Laura Miller, Salon.com (read the entire Salon.com review)

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Cloud Atlas begins in 1850 with Adam Ewing, an American notary voyaging from the Chatham Isles to his home in California. Along the way, Ewing is befriended by a physician, Dr. Goose, who begins to treat him for a rare species of brain parasite. Abruptly, the action jumps to Belgium in 1931, where Robert Frobisher, a disinherited bisexual composer, inveigles his way into the household of an infirm maestro who has a beguiling wife and a nubile daughter. From there we jump to the West Coast in the 1970s and a troubled reporter named Luisa Rey, who stumbles upon a web of corporate greed and murder that threatens to claim her life. And onward, to an inglorious present-day England; to a Korean superstate of the near future where neocapitalism has run amok; and, finally, to a postapocalyptic Iron Age Hawaii in the last days of history.

But the story doesn't even end there. The narrative then boomerangs back through centuries and space, returning by the same route, in reverse, to its starting point. Along the way, Mitchell reveals how his disparate characters connect, how their fates intertwine, and how their souls drift across time like clouds across the sky.

Review:

"Atmospheric and moving, this is an impressively assured debut." Publishers Weekly

Review:

"Great Britain's answer to Thomas Pynchon outdoes himself...maddeningly intricate, improbably entertaining....[O]ne of the most imaginative and rewarding novels in recent memory....Sheer storytelling brilliance." Kirkus Reviews

Review:

"The novel as series of nested dolls or Chinese boxes, a puzzle-book, and yet — not just dazzling, amusing or clever but heartbreaking and passionate, too. I've never read anything quite like it, and I'm grateful to have lived, for a while, in all its many worlds, which are all one world, which is, in turn, enchanted by Mitchell's spell-caster prose, our own." Michael Chabon, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Adventures of Kavalier & Clay

Review:

"A boomeranging historical novel moving from the Age of Discover to post-apocalyptic Hawaii with stops on the way in China Syndrome-era California and dystopian capitalist Korea. An amazing performance of ventriloquism and brains." Tin House magazine

Review:

"[A] remarkable book....It knits together science fiction, political thriller and historical pastiche with musical virtuosity and linguistic exuberance: there won't be a bigger, bolder novel next year." Justine Jordan, The Guardian (U.K.)

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 22 comments:

greystockings, August 4, 2012 (view all comments by greystockings)
"Cloud Atlas" is the best book I have read in quite a while and probably top five overall; it works its way in to somewhere deep. While there are a couple of sections that don't brim over with exciting events the book is so well written in a perceptive, witty and subtly probing manner that I didn't mind at all- and most of the story does move well and draw in the reader. I have since read two more of David Mitchell's novels, "Ghostwritten" and "Number 9 Dream", both of which I enjoyed slightly less than "Cloud Atlas" but which still have Mitchell's enviable writing and arguably faster plots. I now have his latest, "The Thousand Autumns of Jacob Zoet" (I believe that is the title) sitting on my shelf as I relish the ability to pick it up at a time of my choosing. I highly recommend "Cloud Atlas" and any of David Mitchell's work.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
Kenneth Fricklas, August 4, 2012 (view all comments by Kenneth Fricklas)
David Mitchell, one of the great young(ish, these days) authors of the 21st century, manages to create a story that exists in around 10 voices, over 400 years, but all interweaves into a fantastic story that involves cannibals, the state of newspapers, music history, murder, and more, and pulls it all off seemingly effortlessly. Amazing.
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jdlowry, January 22, 2010 (view all comments by jdlowry)
I don't know which characteristic of this novel is the most awe-inspiring--Mitchell's effortless transitions between wildly diverging genres, the way all those genre-stories fit together into something that transcends genre, or the wrenchingness of the fate Mitchell postulates for intelligent human life. This is a book for a long stay on a desert island--I could read it 100 times and still find new thinking points.
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(1 of 2 readers found this comment helpful)
View all 22 comments

Product Details

ISBN:
9780340822784
Publisher:
Libri

Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » Medical Specialties
Travel » General

Cloud Atlas
0 stars - 0 reviews
$ In Stock
Product details pages Libri - English 9780340822784 Reviews:
"Staff Pick" by ,

While it was hard to narrow down my list to just five "best of" picks, I didn't have to think twice about what would be my favorite book of the year. In Cloud Atlas Mitchell again uses the format of connecting short stories with recurring motifs into a larger, almost epic narrative that spans the globe and centuries of human history. Filled with wonderful characters, effortless shifts in style, and more imagination than you can shake a stick at, Cloud Atlas will be a tough book for its author to top. Personally, I cannot wait to see him try.

"Staff Pick" by ,

For readers who enjoy good stories wrapped around an inventive structure. Each tale is obliquely connected to another moving forward through time. And each has a totally different voice and style.

"Staff Pick" by ,

If you haven't read David Mitchell's previous novels, let Cloud Atlas be your introduction to his incredible imagination. Here six convincing and wonderfully realized worlds, filled with surprise and originality, loosely intermingle. Each story, inhabited with equally compelling characters, proves the genius of this amazingly gifted writer.

"Review A Day" by , "David Mitchell is a spookily protean writer. His favored technique — he used it in his first novel, Ghostwritten — is to build a long narrative out of shorter ones, stories told in vastly different voices and styles, then cinch the whole patchwork together with some supernal device that reveals their underlying connections. In Ghostwritten, he couldn't manage to pull off that final, unifying gesture, but his third novel, Cloud Atlas, is far more convincing, a genuine and thoroughly entertaining literary puzzle." (read the entire Salon.com review)
"Review" by , "Atmospheric and moving, this is an impressively assured debut."
"Review" by , "Great Britain's answer to Thomas Pynchon outdoes himself...maddeningly intricate, improbably entertaining....[O]ne of the most imaginative and rewarding novels in recent memory....Sheer storytelling brilliance."
"Review" by , "The novel as series of nested dolls or Chinese boxes, a puzzle-book, and yet — not just dazzling, amusing or clever but heartbreaking and passionate, too. I've never read anything quite like it, and I'm grateful to have lived, for a while, in all its many worlds, which are all one world, which is, in turn, enchanted by Mitchell's spell-caster prose, our own."
"Review" by , "A boomeranging historical novel moving from the Age of Discover to post-apocalyptic Hawaii with stops on the way in China Syndrome-era California and dystopian capitalist Korea. An amazing performance of ventriloquism and brains."
"Review" by , "[A] remarkable book....It knits together science fiction, political thriller and historical pastiche with musical virtuosity and linguistic exuberance: there won't be a bigger, bolder novel next year."
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