Ghostwritten (Mitchell)

David Mitchell, 1999
Knopf Doubleday
426 pp.
ISBN-13: 9780375724503

In this ambitious and electrifying debut novel, David Mitchell engages us in a literary trek across the world of human experience through a mesmerizing series of linked narratives.

At once as alike and distinct as any two pinpoints on the globe, nine characters — a terrorist cult member in Okinawa, a record-shop clerk in Tokyo, a money-laundering British financier in Hong Kong, an old Buddhist woman running a tea shack in China, a transmigrating "noncorpum" entity seeking a human host in Mongolia, a gallery-attendant-cumart-thief in Petersburg, a drummer in London, a female physicist hiding from the CIA in Ireland, and a late-night radio deejay in New York — hurtle toward a shared destiny of astonishing impact.

Like the book's one nonhuman narrator, Mitchell latches onto his host characters and invades their lives with parasitic precision. And while the voices here remain completely oblivious to the bizarre ways in which their stories intersect, they converge to render Ghostwritten a sprawling and eerily well-crafted relief map of the modern world. (From the publisher.)

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