The Echo Maker: Richard Powers
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In fact, so far I have liked each novel just a tiny bit less while remaining in awe of how he ties science and/or the arts to stuff that happens in real life.
He delves into consciousness, reciprocity, the two-way valve between the head and the heart of the self, and the division between the human and the natural world. As Mark’s condition develops, it comes to the attention of Gerald Weber, a famous neurologist and author of several popular books on the subject of the brain. Gold Bug examined genetics (as did OWS from a different perspective) and seemed to me to argue that life is more than a random collection of genes: more inexplicable, more complex, more wonderful. Just on the basis that this book has triggered such a variety of thoughts, in the same way that the narrative splits and divides into different stories, I feel that I have to give the book 5 stars despite the fact that something about it wasn’t as amazing as first time I read it.The story starts with Mark, a young man in left in a coma after a car accident that almost killed him. I am so driven to tell others to read this beautiful story that although I can not give the description it deserves, I must persuade readers to purchase it.
Every barrier she'd ever chafed against was no more than a Chinese finger lock that opened the instant when she stopped pulling. Mark has perfected a dingy existence, passing the time with video games, beer and general lunkhead-ery. So he flies out to Nebraska, eventually incapable of helping due to the crippling amount of insecurity he has developed from negative book reviews, about how much of a scientific hack he has become.When a man suffers a traumatic brain injury and begins to believe that his own reflection is an imposter, his sister and a renowned neurologist must unravel the truth behind his condition. When Mark recovers consciousness, he is unable to accept that Karin is his sister, obsessing on minor differences between what he sees and what he remembers, illustrating what is known as Capgras syndrome.
Powers' writing has been praised for its lyrical prose and its ability to challenge readers' perspectives on the world. That brings a famous Oliver Sacks-type cognitive scientist to the scene, where he encounters not only the patient and his nearly hysterical sister, but a nurse's aide who is far too savvy and knowing to seem to be in the right place. They've got some stunning verbal beauty and some well-crafted moments, but not enough to prop up the flailing plot, opaque themes, and absurd characterization. This book has circulated through my dreams on several occasions; The Echo Maker certainly lives up to its title. The book charts the long journey of the accident victim trying to make sense of his surreal world, and carries a couple relationship subplots along with it, along with a growing fight between preservationists who want to save the sand crane nesting area nearby and developers who have other plans.Had Iris Murdoch been born 30 years later and in America, these are the sorts of books she might now be writing. On the benefit side, there is a rather sympathetic portrait of the Midwest, and some beautiful pages on the mystery of bird migration (in this case, the millions of cranes that come to Nebraska, every spring). Firstly Mark becomes obsessed with a mysterious note left at his bedside on the day of the accident, and needs to find out who wrote it, what they know, and how his friends were involved. la storia di Mark, che si perde, e dei circuiti impazziti del suo cervello, ove tutto, all'improvviso, diventa caos, ed è la storia di Karin, che ha provato a mettere ordine nella sua vita, allontanandosi da Kearney, e che invece, risucchiata dal caos della mente del fratello è costretta a tornare per ricominciare ad affondare lentamente nel proprio. Powers has embarked on important stuff, but the way he worked out this book, didn't completely captivate me.