Station Eleven – Emily St. John Mandel
GoodReads Rating – 4.5 Stars
Let me start by saying, this is one of the books I own that I WISH I had the American book cover for, I mean LOOK AT IT…
…it is STUNNING!
Anyway. On with the review.
Station Eleven is a post-apocalyptic novel set in a world where not many people are left (I don’t want to give too much away but yeah, LOTS of people are dead). The story follows a number of characters throughout both their lives pre-DEADLY THING THAT KILLED 897530489752038945 PEOPLE and their lives after.
The book kicks off with the death of famous actor Arthur Leander during a performance of King Lear. After this, through many (probably too many) links and coincidences, we meet the characters effected by both his death, and the aftermath of the apocalyptic event. Again, I don’t want to say too much and spoil the story but we are taken through a journey through this post-apocalyptic world as we follow the Travelling Symphony, a group of actors and musicians who travel the country performing in various settlements where people live out their days in this less than ideal world. MAJOR drama goes down which results in all kinds of murder and violence, which is always fun.
I loved some of the characters in this book, and I hated a few of them (I hated Arthur probably the most). I also loved the kind of side story of Doctor Eleven, a graphic novel created by one of the characters. It sounds SO amazing, and really links in with some of the major themes of the book, I’d love for it to one day become an actual graphic novel, that would be an amazing read.
One thing I will say about this book is that nothing much happens in the way of the story, by this I mean there is minimal action. Saying that, the action we do see is incredible and really keeps you reading to see how the story goes and progresses. Another thing about this book is that, much like I said of The Game of Thrones, we can sometimes spend a little bit too long between characters to find out where they’re at and how they’re doing, which is good in a suspense kind of way but also frustrating in a STOP BLABBING ON ABOUT THIS PERSON AND TELL ME IF THEY’RE OKAY kind of way.
All in all I really enjoyed this book. I read it in about three sittings, honestly couldn’t put it down. The writing is absolutely beautiful, some of the characters are so lovable it hurts, and you really begin to care for them as people towards the end of the story.
I would highly recommend Station Eleven. A stunningly written quick read.