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591 pages, Paperback
First published April 11, 2006
Run across a field of daisies at warp speed but keep your eyes on the ground. It’s ace. Petalled stars and dandelion comets streak the green universe. Moran and I got to the barn at the far side, dizzy with intergalactic travel.
People’re a nestful of needs. Dull needs, sharp needs, bottomless-pit needs, flash-in-the-pan needs, needs for things you can’t hold, needs for things you can. Adverts know this. Shops know this. Specially in arcades, shops’re deafening. I’ve got what you want! I’ve got what you want! I’ve got what you want! But walking down Regent’s Arcade, I noticed a new need that’s normally so close up you never know it’s there. You and your mum need to like each other. Not love, but like.
‘I want to bloody kick this moronic bloody world in the bloody teeth over and over till it bloody understands that not hurting people is ten bloody thousand times more bloody important than being right.’This line from Jason echoes a message that permeates through all of Mitchell’s novels. In Cloud Atlas, the abuse of power is present is a primary theme in each of the novels stories, as well as in Ghostwritten to a lesser extent. Even Number9dream toys with the ideas of power and the struggle for it. It is as if Mitchell took the events from his own upbringing and inflated the lessons he learned to the larger scope of society and the overall human condition. It could even be argued that Mitchell’s own coming-of-age story was skewed and spun with larger literary themes into Number9dream, which further excuses him of his repeat visits to the bildungsroman theme.
The first torrent of vomit kicked a GUUURRRRRR noise out of me, and poured on the muddy grass. In the hot slurry were bits of prawn and carrot. Some'd got n my splayed fingers. It was warm as warm rice pudding. More was coming, Inside my eyelids was a Lambert and Butler cigarette sticking out of its box, like in an advert. The second torrent was a mustardier yellow. I guppered for fresh oxygen like a man in an airlock. Prayed that was the last of it. Then came three short, boiling subslurries, slicker and sweeter, as if composed of the Baked Alaska.