Oryx and Crake

Oryx and Crake

by Margaret Atwood

Overview: Oryx and Crake is at once an unforgettable love story and a compelling vision of the future. Snowman, known as Jimmy before mankind was overwhelmed by a plague, is struggling to survive in a world where he may be the last human, and mourning the loss of his best friend, Crake, and the beautiful and elusive Oryx whom they both loved. In search of answers, Snowman embarks on a journey–with the help of the green-eyed Children of Crake–through the lush wilderness that was so recently a great city, until powerful corporations took mankind on an uncontrolled genetic engineering ride. Margaret Atwood projects us into a near future that is both all too familiar and beyond our imagining.

Rona Simmons (11/20/16): Mesmerizing through its unique vision of a post-apocalyptic world, a world where pigs can fly. Man destroys his own habitat then god-like creates a new one. With tongue in cheek Atwood invents a future language while watching the current one fade away. I did not expect to like this novel, having read one post-apocalyptic tale earlier this year, but Snowman pulled me in and wrapped me in his sheet. I know I’ll read The Year of the Flood and most likely the third in the trilogy if nothing else to see what Atwood has cooked up.

“Hang on to the words,” he tells himself. The odd words, the old words, the rare ones. Valance. Norn. Serendipity. Pibroch. Lubricious. When they’re gone out of his head, these words, they’ll be gone, everywhere, forever. As if they had never been.

“Actually she (Oryx) laid two eggs: one full of animals and birds and fish, and the other one full of words. But the egg full of words hatched first, and the Children of Crake had already been created by then, and they’d eaten up all the words because they were hungry, an so there were no words left over when the second egg hatched out. And that is why the animals can’t talk.”

“He wishes he had something to read. To read, to view, to hear, to study to compile. Rag ends of language are floating in his head: mephitic, metronome, mastitis, metatarsal, maudlin.”

“He’d developed a strangely tender feeling towards such words, as if they were children abandoned in the woods and it was his duty to rescue them.”
Rating: ****

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