Tag Archives: emily st. john mandel

Station Eleven – Book Review

3.5 stars out of 5

If you’re looking for some high octane dystopian adventure, then this may not be for you. That isn’t to say that it isn’t good, it’s just character driven more than anything else.

The story hops back and forth between the life stories of several characters (before the epidemic), the weeks leading up to the flu outbreak and anywhere between five to twenty years after the end of civilization. An actor, his ex-wives, his best friend, a paparazzo that followed him and a child actress that he once shared the stage with.
Each character is interesting on different levels and where they came to be, if they did in fact make it, twenty years later adds a commendable factor to the telling.

The best part of the novel is following the Traveling Symphony. A group of actors and musicians who travel the country to the last pockets of humanity and share their talents. I wish that this had actually had more part in the story itself as I found this notion much more interesting than how all the different characters knew a famous actor before he died just before the flu outbreak. The crazy prophet and his followers were a more intriguing faction as well. I think that the whole point of the novel, leading up to the reveal of who the prophet was, was supposed to add suspense to the big revelation. But it wasn’t all that suspenseful. I figured it out long before the reveal.

I sat and absorbed how I felt about this book for several days before I sat down and reviewed it. I enjoyed it, I think it’s worth the read but I don’t think it would ever make my list of top dystopian books. My major problem was that I didn’t feel there was a cohesive point to this entire novel. *shrugs shoulders*