Author: Dave Eggers
Synopsis (no spoilers):
The Circle is about Mae Holland, a regular girl from a small town outside of Fresno, California. She works a nine-five, burlap cubicle job which she despises until her college friend Annie, a high-ranking member at The Circle, calls with news that she got Mae an interview. Mae knows that Annie must have pulled strings to get her the job but she doesn’t care. She works at The Circle!!
It’s hard to compare The Circle to a real-life company; it’s Microsoft, Facebook, Apple and Google combined. It’s a ‘one-stop shop’. They encourage transparency, community and overall technological efficiency. Mae is thrilled with her new job surrounded by inventive, ambitious people as well as five-star boarding, gym equipment, parties, computers, food, offices, etc..
After immersing herself in The Circle’s lifestyle, Mae is confronted with the ideals to post and “zing” everything. Similar to today’s technological advancements, people Snapchat, Facebook, Instragram, EVERYTHING that they see and do. People can’t go anywhere without their cell phones. Mae struggles to find balance. She’s is confronted with an intense inner battle that keeps you turning page after page.
I knew I was going to love this book. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, Dave Egger’s is incredible.
I have to admit, at first I was a bit surprised by the plot of The Circle considering his past novels that I read were about Hurricane Katrina and the War in Sudan. However, it quickly started to make sense to me. The technological advances that we are experiencing could be detrimental if we let them. Technology can be all-consuming. We need to remove ourselves every once in a while and get down with nature.
Besides the plot, the details and imagery in the book were extremely vivid. Even before I saw the movie trailer I could perfectly picture the modern campus, busy workplace, and even her quaint hometown. It was SO INTERESTING to read about the experience of working at such a large, influential company.
I don’t want to give away too much, but all 497 pages of this book were worth reading. There is only one thing that I didn’t love about The Circle: there are no chapters. There are three ‘books’ (Book I, Book II, and Book III) but no other breaks. Eh, not sure how I feel about that.
I know, I know.. the movie is never as good as the book. I know, they had to cut out some details, they had to move stuff around. As most of you fellow bookworms can understand, IT’S STILL ANNOYING!
I loved reading about Mae’s first couple of days at work and all of the things she discovered, all 150 pages of it. That was covered in the first 10 minutes of the movie. Also, one of the revelations in the book, although it was quite predictable, was revealed in the beginning of the movie! You can’t just go changing around big parts like that!
Had I never read the book, I would have rated the movie higher but I couldn’t help but constantly compare and contrast while watching. But with Emma Watson and Tom Hanks, how can you go wrong?
Read the book! Watch the movie! They’re both outstanding.
If you’re planning on indulging in both DEFINITELY read the book first. The plot twist is riveting. Eggers has done it again! For the first time in a while, I have a bit of a book-hangover from this one. It was THAT good.
My Next Read:
Little & Lion by Brandy Colbert