There, he encounters Emiko...Emiko is the Windup Girl, a strange and beautiful creature. One of the New People, Emiko is not human; instead, she is an engineered being, creche-grown and programmed to satisfy the decadent whims of a Kyoto businessman, but now abandoned to the streets of Bangkok. Regarded as soulless beings by some, devils by others, New People are slaves, soldiers, and toys of the rich in a chilling near future in which calorie companies rule the world, the oil age has passed, and the side effects of bio-engineered plagues run rampant across the globe.
What happens when calories become currency? What happens when bio-terrorism becomes a tool for corporate profits, when said bio-terrorism's genetic drift forces mankind to the cusp of post-human evolution? In The Windup Girl, award-winning author Paolo Bacigalupi returns to the world of The Calorie Man (Theodore Sturgeon Memorial Award-winner, Hugo Award nominee, 2006) and Yellow Card Man (Hugo Award nominee, 2007) in order to address these poignant questions.
BONUS AUDIO: In an exclusive introduction, author Paolo Bacigalupi explains how a horrible trip to Thailand led to the idea for The Windup Girl.
©2009 Paolo Bacigalupi; (P)2009 Audible, Inc.
"This complex, literate and intensely felt tale, which recalls both William Gibson and Ian McDonald at their very best, will garner Bacigalupi significant critical attention and is clearly one of the finest science fiction novels of the year." (Publishers Weekly)
"The Windup Girl will almost certainly be the most important SF novel of the year for its willingness to confront the most cherished notions of the genre, namely that our future is bright and we will overcome our selfish, cruel nature." (Book Page)
"A classic dystopian novel likely to be short listed for the Nebula and Hugo Awards" (SF Signal)
the world and characters were so well detailed that it was easy to visualize them and imagine this horrible world that they were working in. The accents done by narrator Johnathan Davis were very good.
when Emiko quits being submissive to those who abuse her and she fights back and kills about 8 important people at once.
I have only listened to Davis once before on a compilation, so I can't really compare.
Davis' narration starts slow. The first third of the book has Davis pausing an addtional beat or two for I suppose dramatic event, but it more dragged the listen for me. Maybe this was his decision on how the book was written, I'm not sure. As the book continued, his pace picked up as did the action and made this an overall good, satisfying listen.
I had certain expectations knowing that this book won several awards.
The world building was accurate, vivid, I could see, hear and smell the places. The consequences of the world running out of oil, new diseases and advanced genetic engineering were well thought through. The Thai setting was interesting.
However, the story was so slow, I got bored. I almost gave up listening at one third of the book. Then something interesting happened, and I kept listening, but I could hardly wait for the next good action.
There is a lot of repetition, for example the start-stop motion of the windup girl. Every time she appears, I was reminded how strange it was. Many times in the scenes she was in.
I could not root for the characters, actually I don't know who was the real protagonist.
The reading was good, except it was also slow, I listened to it at 1,25 times speed.
I hesitated between 2 or 3 stars, finally I gave 3 because of the accurate world building and the cool ideas the story had.
I don't want to think who could enjoy this disgusting theme of degradation and rape, it was made worse by a reader who went from whispering (so I turned up the volume) to shouting (and blasting my ear drums). I managed only a few chapters before I just couldn't stomach the intense brutality and foul storyline. I understand it is set in a future world where society has broken down and become corrupt but ............really?! Why?! I didn't understand the point, perhaps it was revealed later in the book but I just couldn't go on with it.I would recommend a warning so more sensitive listeners don't get grossed out ;)
I would have liked to see the resolution of the story lines all three of the point of view characters that weren't finished or were finished in a footnote format. The story lacked credibility to me. On the positive note, the world building and cultural interplay was well handled. I just wish there was more story there.
Smoke me a kipper; I'll be back for breakfast.
(actual rating 3.5)
This is one of those novels that after you come to the end you appreciate it and see the point of the story. The world is interesting and the prose is nice. Some people hate how a story like this drops you into the middle of the world without much explaination. I did find it confusing at first. The title character doesn't seem relevant for quite awhile but about 2/3rds through the action will pick up and you will see why she's necessary. She is used mostly as a plot device to explore this world. I can't say that you'll probably care about the characters much. It's a more clinical telling of the story.
I enjoyed it mostly as an intellectual piece but am not sure I'd recommend it unless you have patience to wade through a lot of build-up before things happen. Don't expect any big twists either. Another good pick of this type is Atwood's "Year of the Flood" and "Oryx and Crake." I enjoyed those more than this one.
I would recommend people read the book instead of listen. The narration is so slow and the book is pretty slow which makes for a very slow experience.
The book summary was the best thing about the book.
No. It might make them less likely to listen to me again.
The narration was a little monotone, coupled with the long, dragged out details of fake fruit, it was not what I expected given it's previous ratings.
Don't really know because I didn't get that far into it.
It's difficult to concenrrate on contents of the book because of soporific performance of the reader.
I haven't been reach the end yet. I'm steel strugling
Obviously it have but audio is kiling all values
I downloaded this book on the basis of the description. It was... well, just OK. The narration was probably the least enjoyable part. His tone and cadence were positively soporific. I spent the first hour or two listening and feeling like i were being dragged into a vat of molasses. Finally, I set my iPod on double speed and, I found myself listening to a book read at normal conversational speed. Much better.
The remaining hurdles were surmountable, though irritating. First, during most of the book, I think I found myself thinking, "what's the point?" I really didn't know where this was going--mostly because I never really caught a particularly strong theme running through the book. I suppose the cautionary tale aspect was something, but that didn't grab me that strongly. Next, the sheer implausibility of the background was tough to overcome. Windup springs as power for transoceanic ships? This engineering-trained mind reels at the thought--no process I can think of could do that. Next, we have the problem of feeding the megadonts in the first place. Finally, airships filled with ... hydrogen? helium? I can't remember. Either way, the energy needed to produce these two gasses in industrial quantities is tremendous. Any technological society capable of producing H2 or He gas in quantity is sufficiently advanced to also produce some sort of chemical energy storage medium as well. Yeah, i've heard this called "cyberpunk."
So, in sum, if you can suspend your disbelief, this is an OK production. It finally got somewhere at the end--it just took 10 hours of listening to get there. If you do listen, though, do it at high speed. It shortens the wait and makes the narration go from sleep-inducing to at least reasonably paced.
Perhaps I am impatient, but I allowed myself one hour of intense listening to try and figure what the heck this book was about. I was intent on trying to grasp or comprehend the subject matter. The experience of listening to this narration was akin to listening to someone recite random words out of a dictionary. I don't know what this book was about, nor what is has to to anything. I am perplexed as to why it was even written. Not only was it uninteresting, but it was beyond comprehension.
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