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84K Kindle Edition
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|Length: 417 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
|Page Flip: Enabled||
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"An extraordinary novel that stands with the best of dystopian fiction, with dashes of The Handmaid's Tale."―Cory Doctorow
"A terrifying setting that feels rooted to the present day.... Imbued with a menace that feels both recognizable and urgent, and the decisions the characters make as a result feel uncomfortably real."―RT Book Reviews
"Another captivating novel from one of the most intriguing and genre-bending novelists currently working in the intersection between thriller and science fiction."―Booklist (starred review)
"A furious, confrontational book that's extremely smart... its energy is infectious and its ideas are fiercely provocative."―SciFiNow
"Put simply, this book just blew my mind. A remarkable writer, doing extraordinary things, and I think this is her best book yet."―Blue Book Balloon
"Claire North goes from strength to strength.... A tense, moving story."―Guardian
"The grimy, meticulously constructed and worrisomely believable dystopia Claire North has created for 84k is our world, just a few years down the path."―NPR
"One of the most distinct and compelling SF novels of the year thus far."―Toronto Star --This text refers to the paperback edition.
About the Author
- File Size : 1522 KB
- Publication Date : May 22, 2018
- Publisher : Orbit (May 22, 2018)
- Print Length : 417 pages
- Word Wise : Enabled
- Language: : English
- Lending : Not Enabled
- ASIN : B06Y178M4C
- Enhanced Typesetting : Enabled
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Best Sellers Rank: #98,124 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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I am such an admirer of Claire North's writing that I reflexively buy her books when they come out. After trying to read 84K, I regret this reflex.
I found 84K unreadable. I got 37 percent through the book and gave up. The book has none of the attractions of Claire North's previous books. The dystopian world that the novel is set in is trite and quickly becomes uninteresting. The plot is plodding, even more tedious than The End of the Day. The central character is grey and uninteresting.
There are sections of the book that exhibit Claire North's elegant writing. But there are other sections that appear to be some kind of stylistic experiment. An experiment that fails for me.
I considered persevering and slogging through the book. But it showed no promise of getting better. There are just too many other good (or at least readable) books waiting to be read to bother with this one.
Many writers have a disastrous book and later produced better work. I hope that this will be the case for Claire North. But I might wait to read some reviews before buying her next book.
84K was a very hard book to get through. Although Ms. North got her point across in this book, getting there was an exercise in sheer determination and perseverance. When I read a book from an author who is on my "favorites" list, I do so with great anticipation. With this book, however, I had to force myself to read it. I did not allow myself to stop until the end of the book.
When characters are not fleshed out, especially the protagonist, then it makes the readers job so much harder in understanding the plot and story-line of the book. I would say that all of the characters in this book never reached the 3-dimensional phase that is so important to the entertainment value and emotional commitment of the reader.
I won't go into the details of the book. They've been listed enough here. This is the first book of Ms. Webb's, under either of her pen names, that I have not enjoyed. I've reread all of her books multiple times. This book, however, will not be read again. It was so difficult getting through it the first time; I cannot imagine going through that again.
I am a devoted fan of Ms. Webb's and will continue to buy her books. If her book continue in this vein, I will have to say goodbye.
It will be a painful parting for me.
The story was compelling. I thought the world building was well done, and the characters both enjoyable and believable. The author frequently uses unfinished thoughts to highlight the uncertainty or nebulousness, etc. of a moment. It is done well – but just like when my wife starts a sentence and then just stops talking in the middle… it’s a bit annoying. The author also uses physical line breaks (like in poetry) to convey some sense of the moment to the reader. This did NOT have the impact on me that I know they were hoping for – it just made that paragraph slower and more annoying to read. Liked everything else
[book:84K|35511975] is set in a dystopian near future in England. The country is in a sorry state since the Company joined forces with the Government and took over everything. Life now depends on having money, lots of it, or dare we say it is not worth living. Our main character, Theo, while not being a particularly brave man, stands up against the status quo and attempts to 'break the world'.
This is a very dark book, much more so than any of the author's previous works. There is death and degradation by the bucket load but there are also occasional hints of human warmth and kindness. The story is not linear and jumps around times, places and people until my head swam. I am glad I was reading it - audio would be very hard to follow.
The ending is hard to take, but real although there were highlights. I closed the book with a smile and thought to myself I am so very glad I am a reader.
Top reviews from other countries
(I also would not recommend the audio version of the book which was read in a relentlessly chirpy way better suited to Thackeray or Woodhouse)
Although I love dystopian fiction, I found this novel hard-going. And, I needed regular breaks from the bleak despair of it, to regain my composure. Mostly, it was unremittingly grim. The writing is accomplished and literary, which I appreciated, but for me the style was sometimes confusing and definitely over-long. I would say that, for my brain, it required too much focus. There are too many chapters (83) and, at times, too much detail. I’m glad I’ve read it and, at the same time, I’m glad to be able to put it down. I know that it will be memorable. So, overall I remain in an ambivalent state.
This is dystopian fiction, set in a very probable present/ near future. Everyone's life has a monetary value. Crimes are calculated and those who commit them can pay off their value. Those who can't afford to pay the fine, are sent to the 'pattie line'. Social media is king and The Company runs everything.
The main character, Theo, is a faceless, seemingly emotionless man, who runs in to an ex-girlfriend. He then has to admit to himself and to her that he isn't in fact Theo Miller in reality. It's a persona he has stolen from an old university friend who was killed in a 'duel gone wrong' so that he could get on in life (social class is still everything). His ex is murdered and Theo decides that he has the responsibility of trying to solve her murder and continuing with the task she had set herself before she was murdered. And in the process, he hopes to bring down The Company.
The language is disjointed and unsettling, which only adds to the feelings of distress and hopelessness in this dystopian future present.
I loved it, and would happily turn back to the beginning and start all over again. I will say though, if you're looking for a light 'beach read' (I've never understood that term), this probably isn't it. If you're looking for something that will make you sit up and think, then this is the book for you!
The writing style is clever, sometimes confusing, and always in keeping with the narrative. Broken sentences, incomplete thoughts, ideas born only to trail into uncertainty: all this chimes relentlessly with the psychosis and sheer survival techniques of the people portrayed.
It is not an easy read. It is far from a cheerful read. But it is a necessary read if we are to avoid the very issues this far-seeing author envisages. Money, the modern God, rules supreme. Emotions, justice, fairness, equality, compassion, and all else seen as good by most ordinary people is discarded deliberately by those who worship money and its unnatural ability to rule and control.
The humanity of the protagonists contrasts sharply with the utter greed, self-obsession, harsh cruelty, self-deception, fanaticism and coldness of the antagonists.
This is a book about love, filial and romantic, set in an environment where the word has no meaning for most unless applied to money. It chills to the bone, creates fear for the future, engages with the same terror and anxiety prevalent in the horror genre, but employs the active descriptive techniques of the thriller, without ever diminishing the importance of character.
You cannot fail to be gripped by this story, though some readers may find the fragmentation, which is fundamental to the emotional kick of the work, sometimes frustrating.
Read it. Please, read it. The future it predicts is a wink away as I write this.