One of the greatest difficulties with reading a novel where structure has become so inverted is to get past that inversion and still appreciate the story. David Mitchell has constructed his novel Cloud Atlas from six novellas which are broken up in Russian-doll style with the first half of the first story coming first and the last half of the first story being last so that the stories sandwich each other like this: 1 2 3 4 5 6 5 4 3 2 1. The reason to do something like this should not be just to do it and Mitchell does make great efforts to tie his stories together but ultimately the cleverness of the conceit never gets much beyond that: being clever. The upside is that his ability in this effort is fluid and flawless, his prose brilliant.
Set in atmospheric coastal Japan, this epic story centers on an earnest young clerk, Jacob de Zoet, who arrives in the summer of 1799 to make his fortune and return to Holland to wed his fiancée. But Jacob’s plans are shaken when he meets the daughter of a Samurai.
In this book David Mitchell writes about all the importance of proper education of exceptional children. He gives the classification of exceptional kids and then discusses the problem of creating and managing such special schools. The book is a great help for teachers who work with exceptional children.
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