Monday, 21 February 2011

Review: Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood

This was my first book by Canadian author Margaret Atwood, I fell in love with her writing in an instant. I took my time with this book to take in everything Atwood has to say about what is going wrong on planet Earth and to what it could possibly lead. This especially means overpoulation, resource constraints, war and terror, all things caused by humans, weakening them. Atwood describes an apocalyptic future where all this has let to the extinction of all humans but Snowman and the children of Oryx and Crake.

Snowman is a solitary human living close to the genetically modified Crakers. He is like a prophet for them, telling them stories about Crake, who made them and Oryx, who teached and loved them. We get to know Snowman's story, his childhood and how he became friends with Crake and how he fell in love with Oryx. He is the only one left who knows what happened. His story is told between descriptions of his present day activities, where he has to get hands on some food or has to hide from genetically mixed animals like pigoons or wolvogs.

I think the genetic engineering going on in the book, which at last becomes a man-playing-god tale, to be upsettingly realistic. Reading multiple reviews, I know this book is not liked by everyone. But if you like a thought-provoking, literary dystopia novel this book is highly recommended. Five stars!


  1. If you liked this one, you should definitely try The Handmaid's Tale, it's by Atwood too and is also dystopia.

  2. Thanks Sam. I have heard about it and would definitely want to try. First I have to get my hands on it. I have The Year of the Flood though.

  3. I also enjoyed this a lot. The Year of the Flood is quite different but it's nice how it slots into the story of Oryx and Crake (but not very fast, you have to be patient. In the end it all comes together).