July 28, 2017

Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood

Oryx and CrakeYou enter a very strange, post apocalyptic world when you read Margaret Atwood’s Oryx and Crake.

One that is best explored alongside the Mercury Rev album Deserters Songs – somehow it fits just perfectly. And I can’t hear any of the tracks without thinking of Oryx and Crake too.

The book’s set in a post apocalyptic world, and our main character is Snowman who pre-apocalypse was Jimmy.

The story runs both through Snowman’s present, and Jimmy’s pre-apocalypse life. Through this we learn of a human society obsessed with technical advancement, and genetic manipulations where those who work for the big companies live in sheltered accommodation and the rest fend for themselves.

It’s a very creative book – there’s some great descriptions of the computer games they played, and the weird modified animals that now roam about the place. But it’s also slightly scary – much of what is going on is just things which are happening now taken to a possible extreme.

The more fascinating story is that of Jimmy, we learn of his whole life from boyhood through to adulthood. And slowly meet the book’s 2 namesakes – Crake (his very gifted friend) and later Oryx.

Fascinating book – I really must also get and read The Year of the Flood which is set at the same time, with some of the same characters.

Oh, and it was also nominated for the 2003 Man Booker Prize.


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