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Cloud Atlas | Paperback

Released on 21 February 2005

Author: David Mitchell | Format: Paperback

4.0 out of 5 (8 customer reviews) | Write a review

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Shortlisted for The Man Booker Prize 2004
A reluctant voyager crossing the Pacific in 1850; a disinherited composer blagging a precarious livelihood in between-the-wars Belgium; a high-minded journalist in Governor Reagan's California; a vanity publisher fleeing his gangland creditors; a genetically modified 'dinery server' on death-row; and Zachry, a young Pacific Islander witnessing the nightfall of science and civilisation - the narrators of Cloud Atlas hear each other's echoes down the corridor of history, and their destinies are changed in ways great and small. In his extraordinary third novel, David Mitchell erases the boundaries of language, genre and time to offer a meditation on humanity's dangerous will to power, and where it may lead us.

"Superbly entertaining" - Daily Telegraph
"A masterful feast" - Evening Standard
"Shamelessly exciting" - Spectator
"Remarkable" - Guardian
"Stunning" - Daily Mail

customer Reviews

 Average rating (8 reviews)

 Suberb style and smart substance.

| | See all Alcofribas's reviews (8)

Top 100 Sport and Outdoor Reviewer

The book is structured like a Russian doll with six distinct stories nestled within each other.

I thought the book would probably turn out to be just a gimmicky self-indulgent exercise in structure. My pessism was entirely unwarranted. Mitchell has a fantastic writing style. To be more accurate he can write fantastically in many different styles.

The sextet of stories display Mitchell's mastery of different genres and voices. I liked all the stories whether they were sci-fi, thrillers or historical.

The book is well written, intelligent and playful. In fact I enjoyed it so much I've gone on and read all his others.

Great book, great writer.

 A Masterpiece

| | See all Beckyrlk's reviews (2)

This is the sort of book that stays with you long after you've put it down. Each individual story is part of a long narrative weaved through time, although even on there own, each story can really hold its own.
My only complaint with this book would be the chapter 'Sloosha's Crossin'. Not because it took anything away from the book, but I didn't find it as engaging as the other chapters. Also the protagonist was a babbling idiot and perhaps too strong a contrast from the very matter of fact 'An Orison Of Somni' which bookends this section.

However, the whole thing really is beautifully written and thought out, it is absolute genius.

 A book for the intelligent

| | See all PlaySpendThrift's reviews (12)

Storylines and characters aside, this novel is a fantastic comment on the art of language. To me, it focused on the history of language and how (and why) it changes, getting more and more interesting the more futuristic the stories get, until finally, the post-apocolyptic 'Sloosha's Crossin'' reverts back to the beginning of language (with a futuristic twist).

The individual stories are well thought out, understated and at times, beautiful.

 An extraordinary achievement

| | See all ratcatcher's reviews (1)

An absolute masterpiece, the structure of this book is baffling at first, then fascinating. With a terrifying view of future possible, it's highly imaginative and beautifully written - one of the best books I've read in years.

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AuthorDavid Mitchell
PublisherHodder & Stoughton General Division (United Kingdom)
Formatpaperback - 544 Pages
IllustrationsB Format