Review: The Bone Clocks by David Mitchell

20819685Title: The Bone Clocks

Author: David Mitchell

Publisher: Knopf Canada, a division of Random House Canada

Publication Date: September 2014

ISBN: 9781400065677

The Bone Clocks

Synopsis from Goodreads:

Following a scalding row with her mother, fifteen-year-old Holly Sykes slams the door on her old life. But Holly is no typical teenage runaway: a sensitive child once contacted by voices she knew only as “the radio people,” Holly is a lightning rod for psychic phenomena. Now, as she wanders deeper into the English countryside, visions and coincidences reorder her reality until they assume the aura of a nightmare brought to life.

For Holly has caught the attention of a cabal of dangerous mystics—and their enemies. But her lost weekend is merely the prelude to a shocking disappearance that leaves her family irrevocably scarred. This unsolved mystery will echo through every decade of Holly’s life, affecting all the people Holly loves—even the ones who are not yet born.

A Cambridge scholarship boy grooming himself for wealth and influence, a conflicted father who feels alive only while reporting from occupied Iraq, a middle-aged writer mourning his exile from the bestseller list—all have a part to play in this surreal, invisible war on the margins of our world. From the medieval Swiss Alps to the nineteenth-century Australian bush, from a hotel in Shanghai to a Manhattan townhouse in the near future, their stories come together in moments of everyday grace and extraordinary wonder.

Wow! Just wow! The Bone Clocks is one of the best books that I’ve read all year. It’s fast, it’s witty, it’s unbelievably complicated, and it’s fantastic. David Mitchell has capture my attention and his book has won my heart. I loved The Bone Clocks.

The story is broken into different books, each from a different characters perspective. Each has a distinct voice. As you make your way through each book, the story unfolds. We learn as the characters learn. Mitchell has incredible control over his language, revealing only what’s necessary, and providing the reader with information only when he deems it important for them to know. He ties the story together so neatly, but I have no idea how he keeps everything straight! As you read, he teases you, giving you tidbits of information, a little at a time, until the plot picks up speed and everything comes together at once.

It’s hard to review this book without giving away the plot, and that’s something I don’t want to do. Reading this book is like following a treasure map. You follow the path set out for you, but you have no idea what you’re going to uncover. It’s an experience of wonder and discovery. Mitchell incorporates the paranormal, a little at first, but increasing in frequency as you make your way through the book. It wasn’t anything that I expected, and I didn’t know if I was going to enjoy it as it unfolded, but I liked it more than I could have ever anticipated.

Holly Sykes is an incredibly interested character and we get to see her from so many different perspectives. We start with her at fifteen years old and stay with her all the way until her mid-70s. She suffers so many hardships and losses, but she never falters. She admits her struggles and confronts them head on. Although she faces many things that she fears, she does what she has to in order to protect her family and her loved ones.

I tried reading Cloud Atlas before this and I didn’t enjoy it all that much (Gasp! Shocker!). Maybe it’s because I saw the movie first and was unable to get into the book. But reading Cloud Atlas made me a little skeptical towards Mitchell’s writing style. The Bone Clocks is much more linear and concrete. It flows and transition smoothly. It’s clear and it’s fast-paced. It’s a wonderful read. I got my copy from the library, but I think I have to go buy it now.

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