Cloud Atlas

Cloud Atlas, published in 2004, consists of six stories, with six different narratives. Beginning from 1850, each story takes time forward and into a post-apocalyptic future. At the end of each tale, readers learn that the main character from the upcoming tale had been reading or observing the previous work. The first five stories are incomplete. The last one goes back into the past, and the book ends in 1850, a time from where Cloud Atlas had initially started, thus completing the other five tales. The first story The Pacific Journal of Adam Ewing (Part 1) begins in a remote Pacific Ocean Island, and revolves around Adam Ewing. The second is set in Zedelghem, Belgium in the year 1931. Titled Letters from Zedelghem (Part 1), this tale is about a poor British bisexual musician named Robert Frobisher who writes letters to his old lover Rufus Sixsmith, a resident of Cambridge. Half-Lives: The First Luisa Rey Mystery (Part 1) is the third in the series, and its protagonist is a young journalist named Luisa Rey. This story, set in 1971, has been written like a thriller novel, and shows how Rey investigates a nuclear power plant which may be unsafe. She meets Rufus Sixsmith, who decides to help her out. The next story is about a 65 year old man who gets stuck in a nursing home. The Ghastly Ordeal of Timothy Cavendish Part 1 has a comical feel to it, and shows the adventures of the protagonist. An Orison of Sonmi~451 (Part 1) is the fifth story, and is set in the future. Sonmi~451 is a genetically engineered fabricant, and is a slave in a totalitarian state set in Nea So Copros, Korea. Sloosha's Crossin' an' Ev'rythin' After is the last story of Cloud Atlas. Readers will realize that all the previous ones are interlinked, with their central point being the sixth narrative. Part II of each story lies in Sloosha's Crossin' an' Ev'rythin' After, and readers are taken back to the first story. Cloud Atlas is packed with drama, humour, fantasy, and thrills. This is a powerful book, and takes a deep look into the nature of mankind. It has won the British Book Awards Literary Fiction Award, and the Richard & Judy Book of the Year award. Cloud Atlas was shortlisted listed of the Booker Prize, Arthur C. Clarke Award, and the Nebula Award in 2004.


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