Station Eleven Kindle ↠ Paperback

  • Paperback
  • 336 pages
  • Station Eleven
  • Emily St. John Mandel
  • English
  • 10 November 2014
  • 9780804172448

10 thoughts on “Station Eleven

  1. Melanie Melanie says:

    Survival is insufficientStar Trek VoyagerNovels whose premise strips away the world as we know it can be tricky territory They can be innately dramatic overwrought didactic and riddled with Big uestions about Life and Death that leave no room for contemplation Think Ayn Rand on her best dayOr they can be like Station Eleven uiet Dark Elegiac Lit from within like a mysterious firefly Unhurried Steeped in small acts and evocative landscapes Lonely Elegant Radiant Heartbroken Emily St John Mandel has written something very much akin to a perfect book I didn't want to tell anyone about it because I felt as if it had been written for me I wanted to tell everyone about it because it still radiates softly in the background of my days and haunts me with its delicate characters and existentialist essence If you have watched The Walking Dead you will know what I mean when I say that this extraordinary novel is another striking version of a post apocalyptic universe where ordinary people have to decide for themselves what it means to be human Survival is insufficient because to be fully alive one needs to make choices that define one's character and belonging in the world The apocalypse is but a tabula rasa for the reinvention of freedomFrom the darkness you will see incredible things arise A Travelling Symphony Shakespearian actors sleeping in tents The first two volumes of a mysterious comic book A jaded actor A handful of airplanes glowing in the dusk Fake snow falling on a theater stageAn incandescent book

  2. Maggie Stiefvater Maggie Stiefvater says:

    I don't know if you will like this book It's a very particular kind of book done very well which is not remotely a promise that you will like it The jacket copy is not untrue but it also isn't helpful Yes this is book about the end of the world as we know it yes this is a book about a post apocalyptic Shakespearean troupe yes this is a book about a Hollywood actor's dispiriting love life But that doesn't tell you how the book feels — what the experience is like reading it This is less a novel of plot and a novel of theme a precisely painted mural of people living in extreme circumstances Some of the chapters take place after the apocalypse and some take place before but it doesn't change the tone — the characters' personal worlds are under duress in both timelinesI take back what I said about the jacket copy being true by the way It says this book is suspenseful I think that's an unfair and incorrect descriptor for a book that shines for other reasons I couldn't put this book down but that is not the same as being suspenseful My attention was held by the sharp insights on every page not by a headlong plunge toward the end Like I said it's a book of theme not story Station Eleven follows a few central characters faithfully enough to satisfy my need for a human thread but it might not be enough for those who strongly prefer plot driven novels Verdict unsentimental and clear eyed portrait of what humanity considers civilization

  3. Rick Riordan Rick Riordan says:

    Adult speculative fictionEven since reading The Stand by Stephen King when I was a kid I’ve had a soft spot for apocalyptic plagues that wipe out humanity Er I mean in fiction of course Station Eleven is in that veinThe Georgia Flu sweeps across the world killing most of humanity St John Mandel using beautiful prose and poignant characterization follows the lives of various survivors tracing how their lives intersect in a group of entertainers called the Traveling Symphony The thread that connects their stories is Arthur Leander an aging Hollywood star who – on the same night that the plague began destroying civilization – was trying to reboot his career when he died on stage in Toronto during King Lear We jump back and forth in time watching how his life influenced what will happen to our band of survivorsIf you’re a fan of the TV series The Last Ship or books like The Stand you may enjoy the premise and the way St John Mandel evokes a world without the trappings of modern civilization The end of the novel hints at mysteries yet to solve for our heroes I hope this means a seuel is in the works

  4. karen karen says:

    Of all of them there at the bar that night the bartender was the one who survived the longest He died three weeks later on the road out of the cityon the night the world begins to end a man has a heart attack and dies onstage while performing the lead role in king lear considering that shortly after this the georgia flu will have killed off 99% of the population and changed the world as we know it forever it seems unlikely that he would be remembered among so many millions dead but that's the kind of book this is the story of the people who have touched our lives in unexpected ways an echoing world in which Hell is the absence of the people you long for where the little things or the memories of them matter the mostarthur leander is a famous hollywood actor with three ex wives a son he never sees a lover a friend who knew him when and various people to whom he has been kind careless or otherwise meaningful including a little girl who watches him die beside her onstage and the paparazzo turned paramedic who tried to save his life twenty years later pieces of arthur still remain in the wasteland in the memories of survivors in his blood in the provenance of talismanic objects and in the ripple effect of events he set in motion when he was still alive this is a multiple POV novel that jumps back and forth in time from arthur's rise to fame and the stories of those he loved and lost along the way to the stories of the survivors finding and creating meaning in the ashes Kirsten and August walked mostly in silence A deer crossed the road ahead and paused to look at them before it vanished into the trees The beauty of this world where almost everyone was gone If hell is other people what is a world with almost no people in it?kirsten is the little girl who was onstage with arthur when he died and is now a grown woman touring the wasteland with a group of musicians and actors known as the traveling symphony bringing entertainment to the scattered settlements she has a tattoo on her arm with a uote from a remembered star trek episode Because survival is insufficient and this is one of the major preoccupations of the novel the importance of art and a shared cultural history to those who remain whether it is the objects collected in the museum of civilization the persistence of shakespeare the significance of portions of a tattered comic book from which this novel draws its name in the hands of two different characters who will take from it wildly different meanings or even the memory of star trek these are the things that connect those who are left it is the tenacity of what remains what endures and what can still be done with it the clinging to what makes us human to what matters in the aftermath and to what binds us together that's not to say this is a gentle apocalypse solely concerned with maintaining cultural heritage there are dangers everywhere in a world without pharmaceuticals or technology a world in which a lack of codified behavior can make a man believe he is a prophet and to give his dark vision free reignit's a stunner straight up and between this and california it's a great time to be a woman writing lit dystopias i have read oh so many post apocalyptic novels but mandel managed to show me something new she writes a complicated multivoiced story in the fragments we are allowed to see the slices of experience from both before and after the cataclysm where a dinner party scene is just as interesting and fraught with tension as anything from the early days of the disease and there are so many unforgettable jewels of moments jeevan and his wheelchair bound brother trying to wait out the plague a uarantined plane on the edge of the tarmac the memory of oranges she has such a strong wonderful voice and has created tender and sympathetic characters who may be deeply flawed but are the very personifications of the stubbornness of humanityone of the things that surprised me is that wasn't made of the king lear parallels i mean arthur had three wives lear had three daughters and since there are so many references to shakespeare throughout both overt and obliue one of arthur's wives is named miranda another is elizabethian one of the section titles is a midsummer night's dream the georgia flu is somewhat analogous to the black plague of shakespeare's time i feel like it would have given the novel another layer of ka pow to have developed the theme even further but no one of arthur's wives doesn't even appear in the book except a brief mention that she existed and jeez would it have killed mandel to have given v a chapter??? you know we want to know about that situationbut these are just minor uibbles over an incredibly intelligent and gripping novel and we can still have a little fun with names here exclusive of shakespeare if we play a little free association game with most notably named arthur leander roughly translates into king of tragic lovers which is apttwo uick notes if you don't want a very popular four year old book that yes i know i probably should have read already spoiled for you don't read the acknowledgments because yeah oops that was meand if the graphic novel that plays such an important role in this book is NOT picked up by someone and published as a companion book it will be a huge missed opportunity because we want it badcome to my blog

  5. Jeffrey Keeten Jeffrey Keeten says:

    ”Hell is the absence of the people you long for”When the Georgia Flu sweeps around the world killing 996% of the population there were suddenly a lot of people to long for The people missing from our lives is the hardest part We mourn their loss but we also have to mourn for the part of ourselves that is lost with each of their passings To survive is painful ”Civilization in Year Twenty was an archipelago of small towns These towns had fought off ferals buried their neighbors lived and died and suffered together in the blood drenched years just after the collapse survived against unspeakable odds and then only by holding together into the calm”I’ve met a few survivalists over the years People who are obsessed with surviving the next great catastrophe They have food water and weapons stockpiled Some have even went so far as to build bunkers Everyone of them has looked on me with pity when I admit that I might have a weeks worth of canned food in my house at any one time They have all kinds of scenarios mapped out that will help insure their survival They are than willing to kill people to protect what is theirs They are living for the end of the world While they are buying bullets bottled water and MRGs I’m spending my money on fine wine collectible books and wonderful meals I want civilization to continue to keep me in a bubble of protection so that I can continue to spend my money on culture for the rest of my days It so happens that the day before the world ends Arthur Leander the famous movie actor is playing a part in King Lear on the stage in Toronto Dying is never a good thing but when he drops from a heart attack on stage he has no idea how lucky he is Kirsten is a child actress in the play and for a very short period of time she will think this is the worst day of her life In the audience is Jeevan Chaudhary a paramedic trainee who leaps onto the stage and tries to the best of his abilities to save Arthur Leander’s life Jeevan leaves the theater thinking he has finally discovered what he wants to do with his life His revelry is interrupted by a phone call from a friend who works in the hospital The Georgian Flu is in the states and the medical staff have no treatment options It is killing people faster than they can initiate medical countermeasures Now most people who get a phone call like this would dither would maybe even go into denial for a period of time hoping for a miraculous change in the world’s prognosis but not Jeevan He goes to the nearest supermarket and buys seven grocery carts filled with food The image of a man pushing seven carts through the streets of Toronto to his brother Frank’s apartment will stick in my mind forever Believing the worst soon enough saved his life Kirsten also survives by luck by the dint of her adaptability We find her in the future as part of a travelling theater group They protect each other and continue to perform the plays of the greatest playwright in the history of the world to what remains of human race Shakespeare survives And so do the first and second issues of a comic book series called Dr Eleven because Arthur Leander’s ex wife gave him copies of her artistic endeavor and he promptly pressed them into the hands of Kirsten mere hours before he breathed his last Arthur thought it would entertain his young friend for an hour or so Little did he know these two comic books would crucially entertain her for decades The motto of the travelling dramatists is Survival is Insufficient The blending of Shakespeare and a line now immortalized from Star Trek is exactly how I see the future In fact in my household it freuently happens now the best of the past blending with the best of the present everyone must keep up My kids now young adults roll their eyes every time I say “you probably need to google that” Of course when the world has disappeared and you can entertain children with stories of cool air or warm air just coming out of the vents and they look at you like your telling science fiction stories; it is overwhelming to think about what has been lost So what would I miss?One scoop of ice cream not a bowl full one scoop because when you only have one scoop you shave off these small bites and savor every one of them Movies I can’t even imagine not having movies For a while I could play the entire movies in my head but we all know the images will begin to corrode over time and I’ll be left with highlights Cary Grant running across a field chased by an airplane in North by Northwest The death scene of Rutger Hauer in Blade Runner The scene when the king stumbles out wounded but intent on fighting the final battle in The Thirteenth Warrior Fred Astaire dancing with Ginger Rogers in that dress in Top Hat Marisa Mell frolicking naked in a pile of money in DangerDiabolik Marlon Brando saying I coulda been a contender in On the Waterfront Marilyn Monroe’s skirt blowing up on the subway grate in The Seven Year Itch John Wayne staring off into the distance over the back of his lathered horse thinking about what he will find in The Searchers I could go on and onHopefully everyone would remember different scenes so we could all remember Taking a hot shower A ritual of thinking that allows me to map out my day while luxuriating in a warm continuous spray For those who have their entire library on their Kindles well you are out of luck but for me the Luddite I’d be contending with keeping bugs and moisture as far away from my books as possible Still books need a controlled environment to continue to be useful so it would be a world with fewer books everyday Like the movies it may not be that long before many books would only exist in my head Trains planes and automobiles When the world collapses the world would become flat Global trekking would be along the lines of seeing what is going on in the next county I would miss being able to head to Santa Fe Chicago or Savannah on a whim Until I’m there sitting in all my odoriferous splendor under a tree reading the tattered remains of a copy of War and Peace it is really hard to say what I would miss the most Of course the end of the world is never complete without a PROPHET The troop of dramatists make a swing back through an area where a year earlier they had left two of their members They had hoped to reconnect with them but soon discover that they had to move on A religious element has taken over the region led by a man who is selling the concept of “we are the light” but really he is saying he is the sun the moon and the starsAs a friendly gesture he offers the troop of actors his protection if they donate one of the lovely young ladies from their company to become one of his wives Why does it always take so long for someone to put a bullet an arrow or a knife through a guy like this? The troop politely declines his offer but soon discover after leaving that they have a twelve year old stowaway who is frantic to escape because she is destined to become The PROPHET’s next wife Of course THE PROPHET is dissed and it soon becomes a chase as Kristen and her friends try to outrun the ire of a madman Emily St John Mandel blends the future and the past together seamlessly around the life of Arthur Leander and how he continues to live in the mind of his young friend Kirsten Mandel takes this moment in time the death of Leander on stage and spreads her tentacles of information backwards and forwards until the reader is captivated by the memories of the past and the people living in this theatrical future This is an impressive performance from a young writer and now we have to wait to see what form her next novel will assume 450 out of 5 starsIf you wish to see of my most recent book and movie reviews visit also have a Facebook blogger page at

  6. Kelly (and the Book Boar) Kelly (and the Book Boar) says:

    Find all of my reviews at “The thing with the new world is it’s just horrifically short on elegance” Everyone loved this book I’m talking EVERYONE I have 1 – yep ONE – friend or person I follow on Goodreads who gave it less than 3 Stars In order to prove how much of an idiot I am and that no one should take my opinion seriously I will super giffify this review Station Eleven begins with the story of Arthur who passes away on stage while performing King Lear and of Jeevan the man who tried to resuscitate Arthur and of Kirsten a child actress who was also in the play and witnesses Arthur’s death We then do the wibbly wobbly timey wimey thing that takes us to a dystopian future where 9999999% of the population was eradicated by the “Georgian Flu” and where Kirsten is still an actress only this time it is with the “Traveling Symphony” – an actingmusical troupe who travels the wastelands of the Canadian side of the Great Lakes performing Shakespeare Then we flippy floppy back in time to hear Arthur and Jeevan’s respective life stories The author also throws in a “second coming of the Lord” for good measureEveryone else talks about the crisp beautiful writing and how they couldn’t put this book down and here I sit and have to confess that it took me three days to get through it and I generally read a book a day I can agree that the story and characters were intricately woven but my reaction to those characters and their stories???? Especially when it came to the story of the flu and the prophet No one can ever do the end of the worldsecond coming better than King did with The Stand I like my end of the world stories to grab me by the balls and not let go until I’ve become a complete germaphobe who is terrified to leave the house for a few days after reading ; Station Eleven left me with a reaction kind of like this And for the “flowery writing”?????? The notes I made to myself look like this “No diving into pools of chlorinated water lit green from below No ball games played out under floodlights No porch lights with moths fluttering on summer nights No trains running under the surface of cities on the dazzling power of the electric third rail No cities No films No screens shining in the half light as people raise their phones above the crowd to take photographs of concert stages No concert stages lit by candy colored halogens no electronica punk electric guitars No pharmaceuticals No certainty of surviving a scratch on one’s hand a cut on a finger while chopping vegetables for dinner a dog bite No flight No towns glimpsed from the sky through airplane windows No airplanes no reuests to put your tray table in its upright and locked position ” Followed by a brilliant comment by me “SNOOZE” Then once in a blue moon I have something like this “I stood looking over my damaged home and tried to forget the sweetness of life on Earth” With my genius observation “Oooooh I like that” I also have a bunch of highlights with notes to myself like “Explain?” “Will she explain??” “Are they EVER going to explain this????” Guess what? The answer is NOPEThen there’s of this “Consider the snow globe Consider the mind that invented those miniature storms the factory worker who turned sheets of plastic into white flakes of snow consider the white gloves on the hands of the woman who inserted the snow globes into boxes to be packed into larger boxes crates shipping containers Consider the card games played belowdecks in the evenings on the ship carrying the containers across the ocean Consider the signature on the shipping manifest when the ship reached port ” And my reaction of “SOOOOOOOOO BORING” I didn’t like it but everyone else did so I say give it a shot And if you end up disagreeing with my opinion???? Ha Just kidding If you want an actual review that gives a well stated counterpoint to this one and uses words instead of pictures to do so check out Kaora’s

  7. chai ♡ chai ♡ says:

    Edit Amidst the coronavirus panic this book now hits different 😬This book lay undisturbed on my shelf for years and now that I have finally read it I only feel the sort of heaviness that comes from wanting something for so long that the eventual achievement of it is a lossThere are many things this book does well and I was conscious throughout that I was reading a story that for all intents and purposes should have sung to me But in the end I'm not sure that Station Eleven was the book I really wanted it to be though it was inerrantly itself

  8. Violet wells Violet wells says:

    I wanted and expected to enjoy this novel than I did There’s much that’s gripping and clever but it was spoiled for me by a sloppiness in its construction most notably an excess of half baked and obfuscating characters Was this novel rushed to cash in on the Hunger Games pandemic? At times it comes across as a novel written with heart but eually it can seem sketchy and only half imagined Also should be said that it karaokes most other successful dystopian novels of recent times most obviously and by turns Cloud Atlas The Road The Hunger Games and Dog Star Primary weakness of this novel is its characters Too many and sometimes not only incidental to the story but clumsily obtrusive The novel has as its fulcrum two events – a performance of King Lear immediately before the pandemic arrives when Arthur Leander has a fatal heart attack on stage and a dinner party when Miranda Arthur’s first wife and the creator of the Station Eleven comic first realises her husband is betraying her The most unwanted character in the book Jeevan is present at both of these events first as a paparazzo then as a training paramedic A preposterous coincidence preparing us in some way for the tapestry of preposterous coincidences that follow and have to be accepted if the novel is going to work that might have been a brilliant stroke of mischievous humour if Jeevan had any other role to play in the novel But he doesn’t Mandel simply uses him to dramatise the immediate aftermath of the epidemic But she has half a dozen other characters who could easily have performed this function In fact it would have given the Travelling Symphony body had she used Kirsten here the orchestra’s principle character As it is the Symphony remains a sketched idea that flits in and out of the book with little body than reflected light Kirsten is another character who for me didn’t work at all She seems like a photocopy of the heroine of The Hunger Games – never even remotely convincing as a warrior child with her knife throwing expertise Conveniently we’re not told what happened to her to justify her transition from innocent child to stalkerwarrior Everyone in the novel is a custodian – another example of characters with cloned purposes Kirsten is the custodian of the Station Eleven comic but so too is Arthur’s son; Arthur’s son is also the custodian of religious fervour Arthur’s best friend is the custodian of the novel’s museum the Travelling Symphony is the custodian of culture and another pointless character called Francois starts a newspaper and so becomes the custodian of the written word the interviews with Kirsten don’t work at all except to make the Cloud Atlas shoplifting apparent So everyone’s representing something and as a result with the exception of Miranda the creator and to a lesser extent Arthur the actor don’t ever come alive in their own right Triumphs Mandel in essence is an admirable storyteller And the fluid shape of the novel is great Its flashbacking roving archaeological momentum almost like the act of nostalgia itself – the novel is obsessively nostalgic most successfully through the imagery of the comics least successfully when nostalgia is constantly the subject of conversation Best character by a country mile is the Station Eleven comic and its creator Miranda The comic book is cleverly used as a kind of portal between the before and after – and here the nostalgia theme is at its most poignant Whenever the comic was the novel’s focal point it really held my interest Shame that it was cluttered with so many other cloned and conflicting narratives I couldn’t help feeling if only someone had prompted Mandel to do one final draft Hew the thing into a polished form and think out some of the elements that weren’t thoroughly thought out As commercial storytelling it’s a good novel as literature it doesn’t cut it for me More a collection of catchy pop songs than a moving cello sonata

  9. Regan Regan says:

    A wonderful story about the resilience of people

  10. Cece (ProblemsOfaBookNerd) Cece (ProblemsOfaBookNerd) says:

    Until I someday write a longer review you never know it could happen I’ll just say this I sat down intending to read about 50 pages tonight and wound up reading 200 I also completely forgot the world around me existed for a few hours and that is the highest praise I can personally give any book

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Station Eleven❮PDF❯ ⚦ Station Eleven ✐ Author Emily St. John Mandel – A National Book Award FinalistA PENFaulkner Award Finalist Kirsten Raymonde will never forget the night Arthur Leander the famous Hollywood actor had a heart attack on stage during a production of  K A National Book Award FinalistA PENFaulkner Award Finalist Kirsten Raymonde will never forget the night Arthur Leander the famous Hollywood actor had a heart attack on stage during a production of  King Lear That was the night when a devastating flu pandemic arrived in the city and within weeks civilization as we know it came to an end Twenty years later Kirsten moves between the settlements of the altered world with a small troupe of actors and musicians They call themselves The Traveling Symphony and they have dedicated themselves to keeping the remnants of art and humanity alive But when they arrive in St Deborah by the Water they encounter a violent prophet who will threaten the tiny band’s existence And as the story takes off moving back and forth in time and vividly depicting life before and after the pandemic the strange twist of fate that connects them all will be revealed.

About the Author: Emily St. John Mandel

Emily St John Mandel was born and raised on the west coast of British Columbia Canada She studied contemporary dance at the School of Toronto Dance Theatre and lived briefly in Montreal before relocating to New York She is the author of five novels including The Glass Hotel spring and Station Eleven Station Eleven was a finalist for a National Book Award and the PENFaulkner Aw.