September 2012 Book Club: Cloud Atlas

Discussion in 'TMB Book Club' started by Barry Zuckerkorn, Jul 28, 2012.

  1. Irush

    Irush Fairwell Solenya
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    About to start reading it, being made into a movie by the Wachowski's.

    Anyone here read it?
     
  2. nexus

    nexus Paradise Found
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  3. Irush

    Irush Fairwell Solenya
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    I'm like 30 pages in
     
  4. Irush

    Irush Fairwell Solenya
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    I'm in the middle of the second section and I'm engrossed in it.

    Robert Frobisher is becoming one of my favorite fictional characters. Hilarious.
     
  5. dfmPSU

    dfmPSU don't drive angry
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    It's one of my favorite books. I'm currently reading it again in anticipation of the movie. I have no idea how they'll convert it into a good movie. Apparently it will run around 3 hours.
     
  6. MattyIce

    MattyIce Fan of: The Florida State Criminoles

    I'm halfway through the Louisa Rey part. Very intriguing so far, excited to see
    how the parts from other stories tie in, especially the birthmark
     
  7. Irush

    Irush Fairwell Solenya
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    Finished it today. Part two of Frobisher's letters are intense. Awesome shit to read.

    Fucking loved the book.
     
  8. Gin Buckets

    Gin Buckets Well-Known Member
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    I'll read it! Looking for a new one.
     
  9. Stone Cold Steve Austin

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    Reading it now. Just finished "Half Lives"
     
  10. Gin Buckets

    Gin Buckets Well-Known Member
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    Ok - after reading reviews I backed off.

    I don't like Cormac McCarthy because I think the man is far too wordy (I've read The Road and half of Blood Meridian)
     
  11. Menelaus

    Menelaus The Red-Haired King
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    It's nothing like McCarthy imo. Loved this book. Also love McCarthy.
     
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  12. Stone Cold Steve Austin

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    Just finished. Great read. Interesting style.
     
  13. Irush

    Irush Fairwell Solenya
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    Moved on to Mitchell's first novel, Ghostwritten. Somewhat similar to Atlas, but it doesn't really make any jumps in time. Also, one of the characters is an employee of Timothy Cavendish's brother, Denholme.

    Pretty cool book with crazy connections.
     
  14. Stone Cold Steve Austin

    Stone Cold Steve Austin Tickler Extraordinaire
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    Let's start discussing Cloud Atlas in here. Was there any connection with the comet tattoos? Thought that would have tied together more clearly.
     
  15. Irush

    Irush Fairwell Solenya
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    Just finished Ghostwritten and there is a character with the comet birthmark in it as well, and also 2 narrators from Cloud Atlas make appearances. The whole point of these novels is to showcase random occurrences and how they can link us to others without us ever knowing. The birthmark is a link between characters that have been reincarnated.

    Apparently characters from Atlas and Ghostwritten make appearances in two of his other novels Black Swan Green and Number9Dream.
     
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  16. Arkie Proud

    Arkie Proud The Dungeon Master
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  17. SmoochieWallace

    SmoochieWallace Ipse dixit
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    100 pages left.
    Also here is the extend trailer for the movie


    One thing I see that is going to be annoying is that Tom Hanks is playing Zachry. Zachry is like 14 in the book.
     
  18. Gin Buckets

    Gin Buckets Well-Known Member
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  19. Gin Buckets

    Gin Buckets Well-Known Member
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    This was a double post, but I might as well use this space to ask if we're going to discuss the book here or in the discussion thread?

    Also, I just started, but I'm going to be using the audiobook rather than actually reading. I'll let you guys know how this version goes, but the downside is that I'll have a lot more questions as it's harder for me to rewind as opposed to reread words I may miss.... And there's a flipping ton of words I'm missing in the first chapter, holy hell.
     
  20. SmoochieWallace

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  21. Gin Buckets

    Gin Buckets Well-Known Member
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    I just finished the Adam Ewing part, and I have a few questions… (Remember, if I spell names wrong it’s because I have the Audiobook) -- PS... Sorry about screwing up the spoilers, not really sure how I did that.
    Before they left, when Adam Ewing almost died by falling off a cliff or whatever and saw a beating human heart, what was that all about? Was he sick and hallucinating? I was pretty lost there… I guess all I really want to know was what the importance of that excerpt was?

    Altua was enslaved because he traveled the world, and when he came back he knew too much? Then, after they became friends, Ewing told the captain about him because Altua asked him to, right? Altua was then basically treated as a slave on the boat.

    The Dr – Ewing’s only friend told him of his deadly parasite but had a remedy that gave him hope to survive? It didn’t seem like he was getting much sicker, seemed like he was pretty sick ever since they left the Chatham islands.

    My guess is all these people’s lives are intertwined by actually being that person hundreds or years earlier, and both Adam and Altua were friends in previous (or future) lives which is why Altua smiled at him right away.
     
  22. Arkie Proud

    Arkie Proud The Dungeon Master
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    Barry Zuckerkorn Can you rename this thread "September 2012 Book Club: Cloud Atlas" so we can use it as the de facto discussion thread for the book? Thanks.

    Also, this is now the discussion thread for the Sept 2012 winner, Cloud Atlas
     
  23. Irush

    Irush Fairwell Solenya
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    I believe Adam was hallucinating but I'm sure its also symbolism. As you read Adam you notice that while he says he is against slavery, he really has never done anything about (more on that in his second part). The next character Robert, makes an observation on the treatment Adam gets from the Dr., so watch for that.

    but seriously, just keep reading.
     
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  24. Gin Buckets

    Gin Buckets Well-Known Member
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    This part is about both Robert and Adam's part, because I've now finished both.
    Ok cool... I just finished Robert's part while at the gym on my lunch break. Robert is awesome. The treatment Adam gets from the Dr in the book is different from the way Adam portrays it. Tell me if I'm wrong, because I can't reread, but it sounded to me like the son of Adam turned Adam's diary into a book that made the doctor out to be some crazy lunatic vampire? That's all I got, he really brushed over it rather quickly. Any importance to the Island of Dr. Moreau references?
     
  25. Truman

    Truman Well-Known Member
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    Finally powered through that first diary entry of Adam Ewing's. Just skimming a few paragraphs of the next part. Thank fucking raptor jesus the dialect is a bit more easier to follow.
     
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  26. SmoochieWallace

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    Oh just you wait for the Zachry chapters....
     
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  27. Irush

    Irush Fairwell Solenya
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    I was all like "oh what the fuck!?" when I first started that section
     
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  28. SmoochieWallace

    SmoochieWallace Ipse dixit
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    Just finished. I enjoyed the entire construction of the narrative and am very interested to see how they make it into a movie. Will discuss in-depth once more people finish and I have had time to absorb it all.
     
  29. Gin Buckets

    Gin Buckets Well-Known Member
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    Damn, that was quick when did you start?
     
  30. SmoochieWallace

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    In full disclosure, two weeks ago.
     
  31. Gin Buckets

    Gin Buckets Well-Known Member
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    I'm kind of disappointed in the level of discussion for our book, so here's a question that I may or may not want the answer to.

    This pertains to pretty much anything up to Zachry, so read with caution.
    OK – So I just finished the 5
    th chapter about Sonmi 451, and am a little slow, but definitely starting to pick up on the similarities. Every single chapter has referenced the previous character as a book or in this case movie. If it ruins anything, don’t answer, but are we supposed to start gathering that all of these stories are just that, fictional stories? The stories also all seem to end rather abruptly, and in their following chapter there seems to be mention of abrupt endings – at least in this case and Adam Ewing, can’t recall if they mentioned the end/finishing books in previous chapters.
    I’m digging the book so far, and am excited to read on, but curious.

    ETA: Again, sorry about the spoiler screw up, I realize this happens when I write my message in Word, and copy and paste it over.... Don't know how to fix it.
     
  32. Arkie Proud

    Arkie Proud The Dungeon Master
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    It's been four days, two of which were the weekend. Hell, I haven't even started yet. :crossedarms:
     
  33. Marty Kaan

    Marty Kaan By any means necessary
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    starting this book soon...downloading to ipad now
     
  34. Gin Buckets

    Gin Buckets Well-Known Member
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    Haha - touche. Most book clubs meet like 1x/week right? I guess I get a little ancy.
     
  35. Arkie Proud

    Arkie Proud The Dungeon Master
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    Yeah, at first this book club "met" more often, but we extended it to ensure everyone has time to buy the book (for those suckers that still buy books) and read it. I'm tired as fuck when I get home from work at 11:30pm at night and do my second job stuff during the day (which is writing, ironically enough), so I'll probably read it on my off days (Wed / Thur).

    Also, I'm p sure it's "antsy" :beerchug:
     
  36. The Blackfish

    The Blackfish The Fish in Black
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    Finished it. My thoughts on the whole thing:

    I'll start with the end, loved how Adam dedicated his life to ending social injustice which set the stage for all of the later incarnations.

    I think Frobisher and Cavendish are the least like the rest (and more like each other I guess) I can see stronger similarities between Ewing, Rey, Sonmi and Meronym. All are fighting (or deciding to at the end as was with Ewing) against some sort of social injustice or fallacy. Ewing against the slavery of blacks in America, Rey against the bureaucrats who are trying to become rich despite the fact that it could cause a nuclear holocaust, Sonmi against corpocracy enslaving the fabricants and Meronym against the loss of civilization and the hunger in humans that lead to the fall (and trying to find a safe place for her people to live).

    Frobisher and Cavendish seemed more in it for themselves :idk:

    I loved Sonmi's story the most, although in the end it was all a corpocracy conspiracy to make purebloods more wary of the fabricants, but she was going along with it because despite the fact that they were going to be used against her, her declarations would be out there for everyone to read and some day they may resonate in someone (as they obviously do since Zachry's people worship her)

    I think I liked the insight into Zachry's brain the most because he was so unlike the rest of the characters which makes sense since he was the only main chapter character to not be the reincarnation of Ewing's soul (since Meronym was as evident by both her character and of course the birthmark).

    regarding the trailer and the cast list on imdb it seems like Hanks plays an odd assortment of characters, Goose, Duster Hoggins, Isaac Sachs and Zachry. Just seems like an odd collection of characters to play since Sachs and Zachry both assist the reincarnation in their respective stories and Goose tries to kill Ewing and Hoggins is neither friend nor foe to Cavendish (although his brothers are clearly foes).

    Halle Berry, Jim Sturgess, and Jim Broadbent all play a reincarnation in one or more story and a non-reincarnation in another :idk:

    I do like how Hugo Weaving plays a major antagonist with all three of his characters, Bill Smoke, Nurse Noakes and Old Georgie. I think he should have played Goose instead.

    Loved the way the story was told through a diary, letters, novel, movie, orison and orally.

    Thought it was odd that Rey was the most aware of her prior lives realizing she shared the birthmark with Frobisher, saying she knew Frobisher's Cloud Atlas work and pausing to stare at the ship that Ewing was on.

    Ok I'm sure I have more thoughts but thats about what I can think of for now, more will come out I'm sure as others start to discuss. I'm very happy this was the choice as I greatly enjoyed the read and can't wait until the movie comes out.
     
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  37. The Blackfish

    The Blackfish The Fish in Black
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    After Autua left to be a sailor his people were enslaved by the Maori (I think that was their name) and when he came back home he too was enslaved. He had already seen too much of the world and was too changed to be ok with enslavement so he kept trying to escape and also tried to murder his owner, which was why he was being whipped.

    The minister snuck him into the boat with Ewing who revealed it to the captain (with Autua's permission) and the captain allowed him to stay on the boat and work to pay his way to their destination
     
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  38. Truman

    Truman Well-Known Member
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    just finished Chapter 2

    In general, this book is a slow read for me so far. No clue where its going yet, but it has a way of drawing you in.
    This comment/question is mostly about Chapter 2

    Robert is a homosex that is just sleeping with the wife to get in good favor with her, correct? Sixsmith is for sure one, but are they just friends, or is there more. (I see that he is the subject of the next chapter, so Im sure that will be covered more in-depth)

    Really like the exchanges between Eva and Robert.

    Was kind of disappointed there wasnt anything more about the Adam Ewing diary after he mentioned it briefly. Im sure that comes later in the book. :bartscottcantwait"

    More on that -

    I dont think Robert meant the doctor was an actual vampire, but used it as a metaphor. Robert view the doctor as a con artists, like himself. He thinks the doctor was feeding into Adam's hypochondria to get "suck him dry"(like a vampire) of money or whatever the doctor wants out of Adam (Im assuming we find out more in the next Adam part)
     
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  39. The Blackfish

    The Blackfish The Fish in Black
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    Your first question about the homosex will be answered eventually. The dialogue between Eva and Robert and the relationship between Robert and Jocasta and how he relates it all to Sixsmith is hilarious.

    I think you're correct about Frobisher's meaning behind calling Goose a vampire
     
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  40. Truman

    Truman Well-Known Member
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    The "sleeping with a woman is great, you should try it sometime, had me :roll:
     
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  41. The Blackfish

    The Blackfish The Fish in Black
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    Like I said, Frobisher is hilarious
     
  42. RonBurgundy

    RonBurgundy Well-Known Member

    Was going to buy/read, but Kindle edition is $4 more than paperback, won't support publisher out of principle.
     
  43. The Blackfish

    The Blackfish The Fish in Black
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    PM me your email, I will email you the file and use Calibre to add it to your kindle.
     
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  44. Gin Buckets

    Gin Buckets Well-Known Member
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    What made you think Robert was a :aero: from chapter 2? I completely missed it.

    This is for Blackfish further than where you are Truman, so don't read this one. (Thru chapter 5)
    They said later in Luisa's chapter that Frobisher was "perhaps the only person he ever loved" and I figured out that they were lovers, but I've still got no idea how it was tipped off in chapter 2 since Robert was talking about the dude's wife he was banging.

    Also, it's starting to become obvious that they are all the same person, due to the birthmark and things like that. I'm assuming Ewing - Sixsmith - Somni are all the same person reincarnate? Then Frobisher - Cavendish - Unma are all the same, and then finally the helper in each one who is a little more minor may all be similar. Idk, I'm just thinking out loud, he obviously wants us thinking this as he keeps pointing out how "I feel like I've known you forever" or the birthmark thing, and similar personalities.
     
  45. The Blackfish

    The Blackfish The Fish in Black
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    You're very close, but not spot on yet.
     
  46. The Blackfish

    The Blackfish The Fish in Black
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    One thing I just thought about, don't click unless you've finished the whole book:

    Ewing as a devout catholic believes that suicide is an unforgivable sin (says so in his last chapter after Rafael hangs himself after being raped by the first mate and his cronies), yet in his next incarnation as Robert Frobisher he commits suicide... not sure what if anything David Mitchell meant to convey by this but just thought it was interesting. Also shows that although they are reincarnations of the same "soul" they are all very subject to the time period each story occurs in.
     
  47. Gin Buckets

    Gin Buckets Well-Known Member
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    This pertains to Chapter 6, or Zachry's chapter.

    Ok - the listening is getting hard for this chapter, and forgive me if my spellings are WAY off. I have a few questions that I'm a little confused with:
    1. Georgie - At least to Zachry is he Satan or is he the savage leader of a rival tribe?
    2. Are Dingos the dogs or rival tribe?
    3. Pertaining to both, who killed his father and took his brother? I know the savages/dingos/Georgie but I'm having trouble discerning the 3.
    4. Is this right: Truman's myth is that he climbed a mountain, found an old man, old man was old but acted alive. They found a temple on a mountain, old man is now actually dead, and has been dead for a while. Then he eats his brains through old dead man's eyes. Then Georgie talks to him about when he wants treasures, now or when he's dead, so he runs away.... Is that right? I realize this guy Truman is probably not trustworthy and made up the entire story, but I just want to make sure I understood what he was saying.
    5. Marinam is a pression(?) which I understand to be a person from the mainland who just comes to study the islanders. Maybe insinuating that this whole thing is one giant circle, but that's just me thinking out loud.
     
  48. The Blackfish

    The Blackfish The Fish in Black
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    1. Satan
    2. I have no idea I don't remember dingos at all
    3. The Kona (savage tribe) killed his father and took his brother
    4. Old Georgie ate the old man's brains through his eyehole with a spoon and Truman runs away
    5. Prescient
     
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  49. Gin Buckets

    Gin Buckets Well-Known Member
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    One last question about chapter 6.
    Zachry's big secret is that he lead the Kona to his father and brother, but what did he mean by that? Like he didn't mean to lead them there, they just followed him? If so, why the secret.
     
  50. The Blackfish

    The Blackfish The Fish in Black
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    he was embarrassed and ashamed that he lived and they died (at least his dad died, brother captured and probably dead) and the only reason they were dead was because he wasn't smart enough to lead the Kona away from their camp. He also had lied about it for like 9 years
     
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