Margaret Atwood's eleventh novel, Oryx and Crake, is one of her most remarkable. Set in a not-too-distant future, many of the experiments with genetics and biotechnology that Atwood describes (think "pigoons," pig-like creatures designed to grow human organs without the expense of an entire clone) have already begun. Oryx and Crake explores human beings at their most frightening and hopeful, and takes a necessary look at the intersection of power, apathy, and desire. This is Atwood at her marvelous, provocative best. Jill, Powells.com
Synopses & Reviews
A stunning and provocative new novel by the internationally celebrated author of The Blind Assassin
, winner of the Booker Prize.
Margaret Atwood's new novel is so utterly compelling, so prescient, so relevant, so terrifyingly-all-too-likely-to-be-true, that readers may find their view of the world forever changed after reading it.
This is Margaret Atwood at the absolute peak of her powers. For readers of Oryx and Crake, nothing will ever look the same again.
The narrator of Atwood's riveting novel calls himself Snowman. When the story opens, he is sleeping in a tree, wearing an 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 these 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 wit and dark humor, 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.
"[I]ngenious and disturbing....A landmark work of speculative fiction, comparable to A Clockwork Orange, Brave New World, and Russian revolutionary Zamyatin's We. Atwood has surpassed herself." Kirkus Reviews
"Rigorous in its chilling insights and riveting in its fast-paced 'what if' dramatization, Atwood's superb novel is as brilliantly provocative as it is profoundly engaging." Booklist
"[R]iveting, disturbing....Chesterton once wrote of the 'thousand romances that lie secreted in The Origin of Species.' Atwood has extracted one of the most hair-raising of them, and one of the most brilliant." Publishers Weekly
"Set in a future some two generations hence, Oryx and Crake can hold its own against any of the 20th century's most potent dystopias — Brave New World, 1984, The Space Merchants — with regard to both dramatic impact and fertility of invention, while it leaves such lesser recent contenders as Paul Theroux and Doris Lessing in the dust." Washington Post
About the Author
Margaret Atwood's books have been published in over thirty-five countries. She is the author of more than thirty books of fiction, poetry, and critical essays. In addition to The Handmaids Tale, her novels include Cats Eye — shortlisted for the Booker Prize; Alias Grace, which won the Giller Prize in Canada and the Premio Mondello in Italy; and her most recent, The Blind Assassin, winner of the 2000 Booker Prize. She lives in Toronto with writer Graeme Gibson. Oryx and Crake is her eleventh novel.