Postcard by Margaret Atwood:
I’m thinking about you. What else can I say?
The palm trees on the reverse
are a delusion; so is the pink sand.
What we have are the usual
fractured coke bottles and the smell
of backed-up drains, too sweet,
like a mango on the verge
of rot, which we have also.
The air clear sweat, mosquitoes
& their tracks; birds, blue & elusive.
Time comes in waves here, a sickness, one
day after the other rolling on;
I move up, it’s called
awake, then down into the uneasy
nights but never
forward. The roosters crow
for hours before dawn, and a prodded
child howls & howls
on the pocked road to school.
In the hold with the baggage
there are two prisoners,
their heads shaved by bayonets, & ten crates
of queasy chicks. Each spring
there’s race of cripples, from the store
to the church. This is the sort of junk
I carry with me; and a clipping
about democracy from the local paper.
Outside the window
they’re building the damn hotel,
nail by nail, someone’s
crumbling dream. A universe that includes you
can’t be all bad, but
does it? At this distance
you’re a mirage, a glossy image
fixed in the posture
of the last time I saw you.
Turn you over, there’s the place
for the address. Wish you were
here. Love comes
in waves like the ocean, a sickness which goes on
& on, a hollow cave
one; but I thought Oryx and Crake was better than The Handmaid’s
Tale. This book was very nicely written and though I did think that the
plot slacked a bit at places, it didn’t stop me from being completely drawn
into the book. The mystery, the “what the hell is happening”-feeling
was just great. The only thing I hated about the book was that it was a library
copy, and some crazy person had underlined (with a bold pen) words like toga
and scamper and written down meanings in corners (which is worse than
dog-earing the pages, according to me, anyway.) Sorry, not the point.
a dystopia in a dystopia. A short summary (from Goodreads):
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.
rarely am these days. There were parts in the book, which were unrelated to the
plot and seemingly unnecessary, and I just loved them. See for yourself how
simply and beautifully the book is written:
twirling slowly like a rope artist, spiralling towards his chest. It’s a
luscious, unreal green, like a gumdrop, and covered with tiny bright hairs.
Watching it, he feels a sudden, inexplicable surge of tenderness and joy.
Unique, he thinks. There will never be another such moment of time, another
flashes of irrational happiness. It’s probably a vitamin deficiency.
book, and I get that, especially in case of this one – because it wasn’t up to
the mark plot and character arc-wise, not to mention, the slightly goofy
seeming scientific details. But sometimes, a beautifully written book leaves a
far greater impression on you than a well though-out book (hey, I said,
sometimes) and this one was one of those few books for me. Somehow (I may be
able to better explain how later) I loved this book.
Margaret Atwood, which was first published in 1985.
Republic of Gilead. She may leave the home of the Commander and his wife once a
day to walk to food markets whose signs are now pictures instead of words
because women are no longer allowed to read. She must lie on her back once a
month and pray that the Commander makes her pregnant, because in an age of
declining fertility, Offred and the other Handmaids are valued only if their
ovaries are viable. Offred can remember the years before, when she lived and
made love with her husband, Luke; when she played with and protected her
daughter; when she had a job, money of her own, and access to knowledge.
all of that is gone now…
and I do not blame you for thinking that. I don’t usually tend to write reviews
about books I don’t like, unless they’re review copies, in which case I have
to. It’s because I am mostly unable to think of anything to write. But since I
read this book as part of a challenge, I decided to go ahead and write the
times. I won’t try to tell you how wrong those comparisons were; I merely want
to show how wonderful I expected this book to be. What I got, instead, was very
clumsy writing; not to mention very little character development and an average
with short pretentious sentences, too many metaphors, an inconsistent narrative
and for some reason, no quotation marks. The authors tries too hard to sound
beautiful, scary, touching. Throughout the book, the reader is kept in the dark
about most important things, and instead presented with a whole lot of
irrelevant details. Till the very end you don’t get a clear explanation of why
the world is this way, what drove the characters and we never find out what
happened of half the characters.
of no other reason why the author would do this than to attempt to keep the
audience intrigued. I wasn’t intrigued, just confused, slightly irritated and
sort of amused. The only reason I kept reading the book was because I had to
find out if the mystery ever ends.
developed characters. The book would make a much stronger statement, if only
all the underlying themes such as gender, sex, caste, class and patriarchy
were, in fact, underlying. I like books that have a point to make, but not if
the message starts to hinder the plot and character development. I appreciated
the basic premise of the book, the world that the author has tried to create
and the impact she’s tried to make; but that basic idea was the only thing I am
completely certain I liked.
it, because I don’t; I would just call it okay.