Sunday, January 17, 2010

Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood

A fuckup finds himself the last living man on earth.

And yet the story is about how this fuck up Jimmy/Snowman was entrusted with the future of the humanity, or at least the future of a tribe of gentle souls called crakers, who’ve had all the sex and violence tinkered out of them. The story bounces back and forth through time, with funny energetic descriptions of this future world, its social divisions and the fantastic new creatures the corporations create. In this world, virtually everyone is crushed by the soulless corporate/militaristic bureaucracy. Jimmy/Snowman is a low achiever – for good reasons. My sympathy for him grew. However, I was very disappointed as I kept reading and soon began to realize that Oryx and Crake, who seem like tragic interesting characters, are never going to climb on the stage. When they finally do appear, they are very insubstantial. And their end, therefore, has little resonance.

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