Ghostwritten

I’m not sure if this is going to be that interesting to this group, but I feel like David Mitchell is an author worth noting. He’s probably best known for Cloud Atlas (watched the movie, but I have yet to read the book). Both of these left enough of an impression on me that I feel compelled to work through more of his stories.

Ghostwritten is basically a series of episodes set across the world. The stories share a random link (e.g. a character or an event) and also have some thematic similarities, but they are for the most part unrelated. It feels like the book is greater than the sum of its parts, but I won’t pretend to be so clever that I totally get it.

Some of the more memorable stories include an account of a terrorist cult in Japan (similar to the sarin gas incident), a story about an AI that calls into a radio show, and a Mongolian spirit that can inhabit souls.

Here are random reasons why I enjoyed his book:

  • Kind of reminds me of William Gibson. The Blue Ant Gibson, not the Sprawl Gibson. I have not figured out why.
  • He’s on the periphery of science fiction, but not exactly a sci-fi writer. Yet it just feels like he belongs in that category.
  • He seems to love Japan and Asia. Per Wikipedia I guess he lived in Japan for awhile.