Cloud Atlas, David Mitchell, Random House Inc, 2004, 509 pp
What can I say? I had a hard time with this book, extremely hard. If it hadn't been made into a movie this year, it would still be on my shelf where it has been for many years and I would still be filled with the anticipation of a great read. But the movie was released, I have read the book, and I feel like a failure because I did not really love it and I can't gush.
All my pride as a reader is gone. After dissing reading group members who whine about too many characters, too much jumping around in time, having to read dialect, I have been defeated by all of the above.
I wonder if I should take a class on Cloud Atlas so I can have it explained or at least be made to write a paper or take an exam, forcing me to find and answer the right questions.
OK, there were some parts I liked, some characters I remember. I can admit, grudgingly, that Mitchell created and mastered all those different voices and styles. I got his message that we are ruining our planet and our fellowmen.
I can tell you one thing for sure: at a 2.5 hours running time, I will not be seeing Cloud Atlas in a theater. I would have to pee at least once and I would surely need a smoke.
(Cloud Atlas is available in various formats by order from Once Upon A Time Bookstore.)