Elysium: Or, The World After

By Jennifer Marie Brissett
Directed by Claire Bloom
Read by Jamye Méri Grant

7.82 Hours 12/01/2015 unabridged
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A computer program etched into the atmosphere has a story to tell—the story of two people, of a city lost to chaos, of survival and love. The program’s data, however, has been corrupted. As the novel’s characters struggle to survive the apocalypse, they are sustained and challenged by the demands of love in a shattered world both haunted and dangerous.

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Summary

Summary

Recipient of a 2015 Philip K. Dick Award Special Citation

A 2014 Locus Recommendation for First Novel

A computer program etched into the atmosphere has a story to tell—the story of two people, of a city lost to chaos, of survival and love. The program’s data, however, has been corrupted. As the novel’s characters struggle to survive the apocalypse, they are sustained and challenged by the demands of love in a shattered world both haunted and dangerous.

Editorial Reviews

Editorial Reviews

“This haunting, surreal story about surviving at all costs…[is a] rich exploration of identity and memory.” Washington Post
“Some of the praise heaped on this book includes the words ‘audacious,’ ‘ambitious,’ and ‘hard to believe this is a first novel.’ These are all entirely apt…Every once in awhile it’s great to see a book with such unconventional structure, that takes the genre playbook, tears all the pages out, and shuffles them back together and still manages to tell both one and many moving and satisfying stories.” Locus
“Jamye Méri Grant does wonderful work here. She has a lovely low alto, which I always think is the most adaptable pitch for many voices…The audiobook production offers a clever adaptation of the text…a gorgeous book.” Locus (audio review)
“Brissett deftly handles the challenge of a multitude of characters all being the same people in a multitude of places that are the same place, while exploring complicated questions about identity.” Publishers Weekly
“The novel’s unsettling and unusual structure works because Brissett skillfully seeds symbols and repeats elements to carry the reader through each version of the world. Just as the heroine/hero slowly comes to realize what is happening to the world, so, too, does the reader.” Library Journal
“It’s really quite difficult for me to believe it’s a first novel, it’s so good: incredibly ambitious, beautifully written, moving, and with an extremely poignant ending, not to mention that remarkable, intricate balancing act with all your various hall-of-mirrors characters.” Elizabeth Hand, award-winning author
“The style flows and draws you into the fiction and keeps you there—poetic in its imagery but simultaneously economical. It’s a science fiction, post-apocalyptic, tale, a love story, but not your dumb old man’s love story. A love story for a new age.” Jeffery Ford, author of Crackpot Palace
“An audacious first novel that pushes against the limits of the form…Elysium is a book like no other.” James Patrick Kelly, author of Think like a Dinosaur

Reviews

Reviews

by JF 9/13/2017
Overall Performance
Narration
Story

Brilliant performance of an amazing book.

As so many others have said, it's hard to believe that this is a debut novel. The literary form was fascinating in the book, and the audio version adapts it with loving care and eye-opening (or ear-opening) in the reading.
by ET3D 9/13/2017
Overall Performance
Narration
Story

A sci-fi drama with an interesting structure

I like disjoint narratives, and enjoyed this book at this level. Although the book is a work of 'science fiction' in its widest sense, it won't appeal to readers looking for something scientifically plausible, or even to 'soft science fiction' lovers, since it doesn't really discuss future society. It's more a drama built on science fiction trappings, and I found that it worked reasonably well.

I didn't like the narration that much at the start, thought it was a little dry and clipped, but it grew on me, and the more characters the narrator included, the better I thought about the narration. At one point it sounded like some of the 'computer' effect was left on for normal narration, which was a minor bother for that part.

All in all, I enjoyed both the story and the narration. The plausibility did bother me a bit, but in general I found the narrative structure and drama well done.

Author

Author Bio: Jennifer Marie Brissett

Jennifer Marie Brissett is a writer, artist, and former bookseller. She has an MFA in creative writing from the Stonecoast Program at the University of Southern Maine. Her stories can be found in Morpheus Tales, Warrior Wisewoman 2, The Future Fire, Thaumatrope, and Halfway down the Stairs. She is fomer owner of the indie bookstore Indigo Cafe & Books in Brooklyn.

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Details

Details

Available Formats : Digital Download, Digital Rental, CD, MP3 CD
Category: Fiction/Science Fiction
Runtime: 7.82
Audience: Adult
Language: English