30 Books in 30 Days, Vol. 2
It’s too good! I loved it too much! This is like how I put off watching The Falcon and the Winter Soldier because I love Bucky too much. My feelings, THEY CANNOT BE CONTAINED WHY ARE YOU TRYING TO MAKE ME CONTAIN THEM.
I was going to try and re-read this before I reviewed it to try and make some thoughts more thoughtful and coherent, but I just don’t have the time right now, even though I really want to. Maybe I’ll get in a re-read before one of my IRL book clubs discusses it (we picked it for June, but had to postpone the meeting due to some COVID breakouts, BLERG).
This is lit-fic but I liked it anyway, and this is is sci-fi, but very artsy, and this is also very smart but not stuck up. It’s also about a pandemic, and about an author who wrote a pandemic novel, and then got stuck in a pandemic herself after becoming famous for writing the pandemic novel (so, no parallels there, right?). And also also, time travel!
That’s all I got. The more feelings I have, the less words I have to express them.
Here are some of Emily St. John Mandel’s words instead:
“My point is, there’s always something. I think, as a species, we have a desire to believe that we’re living at the climax of the story. It’s a kind of narcissism. We want to believe that we’re uniquely important, that we’re living at the end of history, that now, after all these millennia of false alarms, now is finally the worst that it’s ever been, that finally we have reached the end of the world.”
“It’s shocking to wake up in one world and find yourself in another by nightfall, but the situation isn’t actually all that unusual. You wake up married, then your spouse dies over the course of the day. You wake up in peacetime and by noon your country is at war; you wake up in ignorance and by the evening it’s clear that a pandemic is already here.”
“The truth is,” Olive said, behind a lectern in Paris, “even now, all these centuries later, for all our technological advances, all our scientific knowledge of illness, we still don’t always know why one person gets sick and another doesn’t, or why one patient survives and another dies. Illness frightens us because it’s chaotic. There’s an awful randomness about it.”
“Sometimes you don’t know you’re going to throw a grenade until you’ve already pulled the pin.”
“If there’s pleasure in action, there’s peace in stillness.”
“You should have told me my cat was a time traveller.”