Jared’s Totally Unsolicited And Completely Subjective Review Of: Oryx and Crake, by Margaret Atwood!
Can somebody bust out a drumroll, please? I feel like it’s apropos.
Why, my friend, you ask?
‘CAUSE THIS BOOK GETS JERRY’S FIRST 5-STAR REVIEW OF THE YEAR (and first 5-star review ever, as I only recently started writing ’em).
🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟/5. Way to go, Ms. Atwood. We’ll even use the special star emojis with the things around the points. You’ve earned it.
She’ll probably go off to retire now, knowing this random dude thought it was brilliant, amirite? Ok anyway! I digress again, but you know that about me by now.
Background: I may be risking my Canadian citizenship by saying this, but I had never actually read M. Atwood before. I know, I know. Hadn’t even watched an adaptation on the good ol’ tube. FOR SHAME, JARED, FOR SHAME. My mama’s favourite (I spelled ‘favorite’ the Canadian way just now in honour of her, since I noticed she did the same in the book) author, no less. Should I have written authour, merely for consistency’s sake? I don’t knouw.
Anyway! I had been meaning to read her for some time, and somewhere along the way in my #bookstagram infancy I saw enough posts about her works to compel (guilt) me to take action. AND – and… a certain Stephen Edwin King (of whom I may or may not be an ardent fan) listed this volume in his recommended reading list in On Writing. Done. Sold. I’m in, Steve and Meg/Peggy/Daisy (I had to Google shortened versions of Margaret and believe it or not, that’s what the Internets of Truthiness returned).
Synopsis: (from my local library website since I already returned the book for another eager reader and forgot to take it from the cover. Hey, you may not need all these details, but ‘they’ say that’s where the Almighty is, and ‘they’ are never wrong, no?) “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.”
So what did I think?: Well, as above, I loved it. I’m not gonna lie, there was one aspect of the background story that totally threw me, and if you’ve read it I’m quite certain you’ll know to what I refer, but even then I could see its place in the story and what led Crake to try creating the society he did (I’m trying to avoid spoilers here if you haven’t read it, friend!). But the overall story was compelling, start to finish. The language was beautiful, which is a surefire way to my heart. Atwood’s vastly lauded reputation for humour was merited. It was the first book I’ve read in 2020 that I didn’t want to put down, and felt that bittersweet twinge when approaching its end. Mama, you weren’t wrong. Really, about so many things, I suppose. I know that now. But definitely not as it pertained to our literary national treasure.
Send me your recommendations of what title of hers to read next!