Nominee for the my own Best Science Fiction of the Year 2022! This book had been on my Wish List since it was announced as “to be released” so when I saw it on the New Release “shelf” at Audible, I snatched it up. I’ve so greatly enjoyed some of Mandel’s prior books.
The Sea of Tranquility
by Emily St John Mandel
Read by John Lee + others 5h 47m
Rating 9.5 / sci-fi (time travel)
The story of this short book opens in 1912 with Edwin St Andrew crossing the Atlantic on his way to British Columbia. He has mortified his very British family in colonial India at a dinner party so he’s now “exiled” for saying rude things about the English there. He was planning to leave anyway, but in a year or so.
The scene switches to the future and a very popular author who is on a book tour, “The Last Book Tour on Earth, 2203.” And then there’s Gaspary Roberts who is from the year 2401 but travels widely and gets in some pretty serious trouble.
A couple of the characters have appeared in Martel’s prior novels and I believe there’s a certain David Mitchel influence here, The themes are exile something lovely which I won’t spoil. Oh – and the narrators do an outstanding job even if that’s not clear at first.
This is an excellent review – no real spoilers, but it touches on the beauty and the complexity of the novel.