Monthly Archives: January 2013

Cloud Atlas- David Mitchell

20130110-112305.jpg

Yet what is any ocean but a multitude of drops?

I simply devoured Cloud Atlas. I will not say that this book “changed my life” or anything of that nature, but I was transported to every environment and into the lives of each character.

Mitchell splits the novel into six small novellas through out and each has a very distinct voice, which I feel must be hard for some writers and even more so with this novel. To have everything connected and yet for everyone to have their own voice. I will say that the novella titled Sloosha’s Crossin” An’ Ev’rythin’ After was the hardest for me to read. It is written in very broken English with a bizarre accent attached, there is only one such novella so it pays to muscle through it.

It is very easy for everyone to have different views of this book because I feel like it deals with so many different themes, reincarnation being at the fore front. There are certain characters in the novel who all possess the same birthmark on their shoulder, coincidence? Also, certain feelings they get while being around objects or places that other characters have been, the feeling of having been there already. While I do believe reincarnation plays a big role in this book, I feel that the common thread is simply “everything is connected”. Characters finding the diary of another, passing ships that another has been on, seeing films about another based upon another characters’ life. One can liken it to “Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon.” Everyone and everything is connected and I ,for one, am a full believer in that mantra.

Like I said before, there are a few places in the book that lag a little bit and they feel like they take forever to read. Then there are those bits that fly by and you just want them to keep going and going and going, but every great book must end. I was a bit unhappy with the way the end was turning out until I got to the last line that sums up everything perfectly. I felt like the end was a bit rushed and he was trying to pack WAY too much into just a few pages. Either way, it is a book I will not soon forget and will recommend to others. I have not seen the movie but I am glad that I read the book before doing so.

Advertisements

A Christmas Carol – Charles Dickens

20130103-113656.jpg

“Reflect upon your present blessings–of which every man has many–not on your past misfortunes, of which all men have some.”

Even though this book deals with the holiday season it’s message transcends the time of year where everyone is supposed to be kind to one another. It makes you think about what your three ghosts would show you. The point of the three ghosts is not just to be amicable to our fellow humans during just a certain time of year, but the whole year round.

I will say that I was surprised at the way Dickens chose to write the book, it is not through Srooge’s eyes but an unknown ghost who seems to be standing next to you and whispering this story into your ear. This unknown ghost, could he be one of your three? Telling you this story because you have not been kind to your fellow man? I think that is up to the reader to decide. No matter which way you slice it, this story is about kindness and what happens to a human being who locks everyone out of their life.

Side note: After much thought I have decided that I shall incorporate books that I want to read into my daily readings along with “The List”. I did say that I would finish by the end of last year and since that, unfortunately, didn’t happen I am giving myself leave to stray a bit. I will still be continuing on this journey and I will blog about all books. Thanks for all of the support and happy reading, Emily