Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel

Survival is insufficient. For the Traveling Symphony, this motto is their life as they travel the shattered remnants of the world bringing music and Shakespeare, all while dodging a shadowy enemy deeply linked to their past.

Station Eleven is set in a post-apocalyptic world in which a mutated swine flu known as the Georgia Flu has destroyed civilization and killed ninety-nine percent of the human race. (At least, that’s what they think, they can’t really be sure because all of the census-takers are dead.) The book has an extremely interesting plotline, as it jumps around in time, and flashbacks and time switches between chapters are common.

Three main characters tie the book together, each having met each other before the collapse of society, and each leaving their mark on the old and new world. Kirsten is a member of the Traveling Symphony, a caravan that brings plays and music to the masses. Jeevan is a young man training to be a paramedic who tries to save Arthur Leander, the third character and famous actor, as Arthur collapses of a heart attack.

Kirstens insatiable curiosity about the past world dives her further and further as she explores abandoned houses and searches for any information about Arthur Leander, the man who only briefly came into her life before disappearing forever, eventually leading her to a wondrous museum, and linking the entire book back to itself, and letting the puzzle finally fall into place. As she travels, she keeps with her only her knives and two comic books. Books that tie Kirsten into something bigger, linking her to the others yet again.

Station Eleven is a rollercoaster ride of a book, full of plot twists and jumps through time, its plot not falling together until the very last page, its characters all being tied together in a spiderweb of fate. I would highly recommend Station Eleven to all teens, especially those who are fans of dystopian novels like the Hunger Games.






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