Rating: 3 stars
Here’s a review of a book by the other David Mitchell, the one who isn’t a comedy actor.
I like David Mitchell’s writing and imagination. I find his books easy to read but still stimulating. I enjoyed The Bone Clocks. It was an interesting continuation of his time travel/reincarnation theme, with the now expected reappearance of select characters from previous books.
In it, Mitchell seems to have worked out what his previous flirtation with time travelling souls is all about, and it’s a curious mix of mysticism, Cathars and science fiction. I liked the allusion to Buddhist belief that the departing soul needs 49 days to find a new body. I also liked the pragmatism of the Horologists. The Atemporals I found a bit too sketchy as a concept. Perhaps Mitchell was hoping to achieve something more akin to Eco. He missed, and I was left feeling he should have gone for the Glenn Duncan/Last Werewolf approach. The final showdown between the Horologists and Atemporals wasn’t thrilling or dangerous enough. The human stories of Holly, Ed and Aoife were gripping, though. Crispin Hershey’s segment was a bit cheesy. Lord Brittan/Lord Sugar? Come on, Mitchell, you’re better than that! And Hershey was another from the box of smug, tedious, white male wankers whom I found it hard to care about. But he moved the plot along. Over all, although it isn’t my favourite of his books, I really enjoyed it.