10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
Doesn't do the idea justice.,
This review is from: Cloud Atlas (Paperback)
Cloud Atlas consists of 6 sections, each with a different setting and style of writing. This is certainly an intriguing idea, but Mitchell doesn't, in my opinion, do it justice. The different sections vary greatly in quality. I particularly enjoyed the distopian setting of the penultimate section, and the early colonial setting of the first section. However, the final section, which had potentially the best setting, was ruined by the fact that it was written entirely in dialect, which made reading it a chore.
The main problem, however, was the links between the sections. I was expecting some sort of over-arching narrative which linked the stories together, but, although each section references the section before, the links seem extremely tenuous; they seem to have been added as an afterthought. Some of the sections appear to have no reason to exist, particularly the 4th one, which adds nothing to the overall story.
In conclusion, although individual sections are enjoyable to read, the overall impression is somewhat disjointed.
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Initial post: 23 Feb 2013 18:09:49 GMT
P. Taylor says:
"The different sections vary greatly in quality"
Oh dear, you have failed to grasp the exceptional ability of Mitchell to intentionally vary the "quality" of his writing as part of the realism/structure of the collected works...sigh
Posted on 20 Jun 2013 09:59:32 BDT
D. Simons says:
This just about sums up my own feelings. I'd read Ghostwritten and enjoyed the "Did you spot the links" aspect of that book.
In Cloud Atlas I was expecting the second half of the stories to develop and provide some glorious insight into the tenuous links exposed in the first half. Instead, most of the stories just fizzled out. It seems to me the author is afraid to enter into any kind of complexity with his plots, which are mostly very linear.
The shortcomings of this book have me hoping some other decent author will produce a similar work containing more substantial plot lines and the fulfilling denouement I was expecting from this one.
To be fair, I did enjoy the Sonmi-451 story, Timothy Cavendish made me laugh, and I guess Luisa Rey wasn't too bad, although in the political and corporate intrigue field I've read a lot better.
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