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Station Eleven: A novel by [Mandel, Emily St. John]
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Station Eleven: A novel Kindle Edition

4.0 out of 5 stars 14 customer reviews

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Length: 354 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
Page Flip: Enabled Language: English

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Product description

Product Description

2014 National Book Award Finalist

A New York Times Bestseller


An audacious, darkly glittering novel set in the eerie days of civilization’s collapse, Station Eleven tells the spellbinding story of a Hollywood star, his would-be savior, and a nomadic group of actors roaming the scattered outposts of the Great Lakes region, risking everything for art and humanity.
 
One snowy night Arthur Leander, a famous actor, has a heart attack onstage during a production of King Lear. Jeevan Chaudhary, a paparazzo-turned-EMT, is in the audience and leaps to his aid. A child actress named Kirsten Raymonde watches in horror as Jeevan performs CPR, pumping Arthur’s chest as the curtain drops, but Arthur is dead. That same night, as Jeevan walks home from the theater, a terrible flu begins to spread. Hospitals are flooded and Jeevan and his brother barricade themselves inside an apartment, watching out the window as cars clog the highways, gunshots ring out, and life disintegrates around them.
 
Fifteen years later, Kirsten is an actress with the Traveling Symphony. Together, this small troupe moves between the settlements of an altered world, performing Shakespeare and music for scattered communities of survivors. Written on their caravan, and tattooed on Kirsten’s arm is a line from Star Trek: “Because survival is insufficient.” But when they arrive in St. Deborah by the Water, they encounter a violent prophet who digs graves for anyone who dares to leave.
 
Spanning decades, moving back and forth in time, and vividly depicting life before and after the pandemic, this suspenseful, elegiac novel is rife with beauty. As Arthur falls in and out of love, as Jeevan watches the newscasters say their final good-byes, and as Kirsten finds herself caught in the crosshairs of the prophet, we see the strange twists of fate that connect them all. A novel of art, memory, and ambition, Station Eleven tells a story about the relationships that sustain us, the ephemeral nature of fame, and the beauty of the world as we know it.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 4083 KB
  • Print Length: 354 pages
  • Publisher: Vintage (9 September 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00J1IQUYM
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Screen Reader: Supported
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars 14 customer reviews
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Customer Reviews

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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Really enjoyed it and couldnt put it down. Loved how it skipped through post apocalyptic and pre apocalyptic worlds creating mystery and intrigue.
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By Jeffrey Swystun TOP 50 REVIEWER on 20 January 2015
Format: Kindle Edition
Literary post-apocalyptic fiction is a narrow niche genre. Sure, there are scads of works out there featuring end of the world scenarios but these are largely poorly written and edited zombie yarns that have grown repetitive. So it is wonderful when a book like Station Eleven appears. It is in the vein of The Road but has more in common with Colson Whitehead's Zone One or, even more so, Douglas Coupland's Player One. In fact, I would say Player One must have been a significant influence upon St. John Mandel. The two share Canadian plot setting and a more intellectual rationale for when the world falls apart (BTW - The New York Times review of Whitehead's novel began with, "A literary novelist writing a genre novel is like an intellectual dating a porn star.").

Station Eleven begins in a highly compelling manner and never lets up. The initial setting is innocuous but fascinating. A production of King Lear is underway at the Elgin Theatre in Toronto and this, pardon the pun, sets the stage for the next twenty years. We are treated to a cast of characters who have been inextricably woven together in a plot that goes back and forth in an absorbing way. How the world fell apart, how people reacted to it and how they function after is artfully done. What must be credited is no unnecessary or gratuitous description of the resulting violence. Instead, my new best friend Emily, writes chillingly and more effectively, "Of all of them at the bar that night, the bartender was the one who survived the longest. He died three weeks later on the road out of the city."

The loss of what the characters once enjoyed in modern civilization permeates the book like an ever-present melancholy.
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By MisterHobgoblin TOP 50 REVIEWER on 18 October 2015
Format: Kindle Edition
The cover of Station Eleven seems to target itself quite clearly at a young female market. That’s a pity; this novel is good enough to pitch to a wider audience.

It’s one of those novels that has multiple narrators/points of view, zipping back and forth between the present day and the near future. This creates a rich and varied patchwork of a story; the story never gets stale because it always moves on when the reader still wants more.

It is tempting to say that the book is the story of Kirsten, a young girl in the opening chapters who kind of ties everything together. Or perhaps to say that it is a story about the legacy of Arthur Leander, a famous Canadian actor who dies on a Toronto stage in the opening scenes. Or to say that it is the story of a travelling symphony orchestra; or the story of an apocalypse. It is all of these things, but each of these descriptions falls short of conveying the full extent of the story and its various strands. It’s like a literary version of Quentin Tarantino’s Pulp Fiction – stories within stories. And told very well indeed.

Way above the plot line, there is a clear depiction of just how fragile our modern world could be; how little it would take for components of our complex systems to fail, bringing down the whole show with it. But unlike other post-apocalyptic novels, Station Eleven is not unremittingly bleak; from the ashes we see the emergent signs of a new society. Of course there is an element of raiding abandoned homes for supplies, but there is also a tendency towards self-sufficiency and even the occasional glimpse of luxury.

There are contrasts with a better life that people once led, but actually those lives are shown to be pretty hollow.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Believable characters, strong story line, intriguing scenarios. Post apocalypse done fresh. The only sour note was the injection of the violence at the end, which seemed unnecessary. I loved the comic book references and the illustrations at the end were just as I imagined them.
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Format: Kindle Edition
This is one of the best books I have read for a year. Disguised as an apocalypse novel but it is much more than this and left me thinking about it long after I had put it down. We need more of these kind of books!
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I love good post-apocalyptic fiction and this is right up there. I am not at all surprised to learn that the novel is being made into a movie, as it is very strongly visual. In fact, it leaps off the page. It's beautifully crafted, with lots of pathos. Recommended
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A beautiful, meandering tale of life at the end of the world as we know it. Something to make you grateful for running water and supermarkets and even noisy lawnmowers on the weekend. Less bleak than The Road - it maintains a spirit of hope.
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