Cloud Atlas: A Novel

· Sold by Random House
4.2
953 reviews
Ebook
528
Pages
Eligible

About this ebook

By the New York Times bestselling author of The Bone Clocks | Shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize

A postmodern visionary and one of the leading voices in twenty-first-century fiction, David Mitchell combines flat-out adventure, a Nabokovian love of puzzles, a keen eye for character, and a taste for mind-bending, philosophical and scientific speculation in the tradition of Umberto Eco, Haruki Murakami, and Philip K. Dick. The result is brilliantly original fiction as profound as it is playful. In this groundbreaking novel, an influential favorite among a new generation of writers, Mitchell explores with daring artistry fundamental questions of reality and identity.

Cloud Atlas begins in 1850 with Adam Ewing, an American notary voyaging from the Chatham Isles to his home in California. Along the way, Ewing is befriended by a physician, Dr. Goose, who begins to treat him for a rare species of brain parasite. . . . Abruptly, the action jumps to Belgium in 1931, where Robert Frobisher, a disinherited bisexual composer, contrives his way into the household of an infirm maestro who has a beguiling wife and a nubile daughter. . . . From there we jump to the West Coast in the 1970s and a troubled reporter named Luisa Rey, who stumbles upon a web of corporate greed and murder that threatens to claim her life. . . . And onward, with dazzling virtuosity, to an inglorious present-day England; to a Korean superstate of the near future where neocapitalism has run amok; and, finally, to a postapocalyptic Iron Age Hawaii in the last days of history.

But the story doesn’t end even there. The narrative then boomerangs back through centuries and space, returning by the same route, in reverse, to its starting point. Along the way, Mitchell reveals how his disparate characters connect, how their fates intertwine, and how their souls drift across time like clouds across the sky.

As wild as a videogame, as mysterious as a Zen koan, Cloud Atlas is an unforgettable tour de force that, like its incomparable author, has transcended its cult classic status to become a worldwide phenomenon.
4.2
953 reviews
Jack Scott
March 20, 2016
One of the greatest books I have ever read. It's hard to understand at first, but once you get used to it, it will blow your mind.
7 people found this review helpful
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Rachel Dixon
December 7, 2013
Cloud Atlas is a beautiful mess of a book. Like a bizarre flavor combination that disgusts at first taste but inexplicably lures you back for more (think salt and vinegar chips or kalamata olives), Cloud Atlas is maddening and lovely and joyful and boring. It wasn't "unputdownable" for me; no, I put this down about 50 times, but always picked it back up.
15 people found this review helpful
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Jarrod D. King
June 2, 2013
I don't know how one can walk away from this book with anything other than a sense of awe for the author's skill in genre and deep understanding of the human experience. I never highlight lines if I'm not reading for school, but Cloud Atlas is just so full of greatness that I couldn't help myself.
8 people found this review helpful
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About the author

David Mitchell is the award-winning and bestselling author of The Bone Clocks, The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet, Black Swan Green, Cloud Atlas, Number9Dream, and Ghostwritten. Twice shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize, Mitchell was named one of the 100 most influential people in the world by Time in 2007. With KA Yoshida, Mitchell translated from the Japanese the internationally bestselling memoir The Reason I Jump. He lives in Ireland with his wife and two children.

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