jueves, 5 de diciembre de 2019

Oryx and Crake, by Margaret Atwood

(I know there could be some mistakes in this review. I’m trying to improve my English, thanks)

In a few words: Oryx and Crake is a nightmarish/transhumanist/literary (or mainstream) novel.

Of course a book by Margaret Atwood deserves much more than a simple sentence, so I will try to expose it in this -also unfairly brief- review.

It is well known that we, science fiction fans, are accustomed to visiting fantastic worlds through rational ideas and (more or less) well-constructed worldbuildings, but we must remember that this can also be shown by literary means, as in this case.

Mrs. Atwood makes a good science fiction approach, with a vision of our future based on a climate disaster and an irresponsible genetic engineering. But I think that the aspect in which the author really stands out is about "how"she tells us the story. That is, simplifying again, her literary talent. In this sense, the story is well developed, the characters are very well depicted and I can say that I have savored all the reading.

Returning to the science fiction approach, about the "novums" of the novel, reading it sixteen years after the first publishing, the novel loses some novelty. You know, things change very quickly; and the themes developed by this novel have also been mentioned in other apocalypticworks, previous and later. However, I must point out that, in the main, science fiction assumptions remain as bold as plausible in the actuality. In addition to climate change and genetic engineering, some topics discussed in the novel are: the trend of a fragmented future society in more segmented socialclasses (that is, more rich and more poverty), and also a criticism about the mass media and the Internet, which can -or have- become dangerous. The author shows us this in the MaddAddam game that gives name to the trilogy.

The case of Margaret Atwood is not very common, an author who manages to position herself between the mainstream and the fantastic genre unfortunately is not very frequent. I admit that I don't know if I will read the rest of the Maddaddam trilogy, at the moment I have enough for this apocalyptic future, and I also have The Handmaid Tale in my pending to read list.

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