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September 8, 2013 / ljbradburn-Smith

Oryx and Crake

oryx and crake

Is Snowman the only real human left?

Are Snowman’s thoughts and memories of what the world once was, and the people he loved, all he has left?

This haunting, dystopian novel takes place after society, as we didn’t quite know it, has been wiped out leaving a heartbroken and disheveled Snowman to fend for himself in the aftermath of scientific chaos. Atwood takes the reader on a trip down Snowman’s memory lane, describing his former life, as Jimmy, and the events that led to the destruction of humanity and his new identity.

Atwood deals with so many subjects, in this novel, that I don’t even pretend to have realised even half of them! Her exploration of Science Vs religion, the gameification of society and depersonalising effect of technology, rebellion, genetic engineering, class and playing God, are just a few. Despite the overwhelming amount of content, Atwood’s voice is believable and her stories of Jimmy, Oryx and Crake’s lives are weaved together seamlessly. She perfectly captures the fear, felt by many, that the evil lurking, in the underbelly of society, will one day become forefront and swallow us whole.

This novel has an extremely dark side and does not always make for pleasant reading, even if you are not easily shocked. Atwood deals in disturbing topics, pushing the boundaries with Jimmy’s descriptions of the debauched society that he grew up in and the danger of technology when hiding behind a screen can make it easier for people to disconnect from their conscience. She delves in to the sinister parts of life that most of us would probably avoid from fear of being consumed by the darkness.

The ending of this novel was surprising and just begs for a follow-up, which of course the brilliant Atwood has bestowed on us in the form of her novel The Year of the Flood, which is patiently waiting for me on my bookshelf. Oryx and Crake is in fact the first in a trilogy, with Maddaddam having only recently been released.

A masterpiece and one of my favourite novels – I found some of the characters almost lovable, some of the subjects uncomfortable and as always Margaret Atwood’s writing impeccable.



Leave a Comment
  1. Cecilia / Sep 9 2013 1:13 am

    Thanks for your review. I’ve yet to read Margaret Atwood and I’ve been curious about this series.

    • ljbradburn / Sep 9 2013 9:03 am

      You are very welcome 🙂 She is one of my favourite authors. ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ is another of her books that I love 🙂 x

      • Cecilia / Sep 9 2013 12:03 pm

        Thanks! I will also look into The Handmaid’s Tale!

      • ljbradburn / Sep 12 2013 8:07 am

        Let me know what you think 🙂 x

  2. Jayde-Ashe / Sep 9 2013 3:35 am

    Great review. I love this book but heaven’t read it for a while, I better dig it out again before I get my hands on MaddAddam!

    • ljbradburn / Sep 9 2013 8:59 am

      Thanks very much 🙂 It is definately worth a re-read, if you are anything like me there will be loads that you have forgotton about it! Enjoy 🙂 x


  1. Brains Behind Books – Margaret Atwood | My Feather Quill

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