Under the Skin by Michel Faber was one of the books I had on my reading list this year, and naturally, it had to be read for mid-March but as it has potential of being on my final, I feel like finishing it mid-April is justified. I’m not entirely sure why it took me so long to finish this, most likely the need to do other things and as it’s not the most engaging text, I didn’t really feel all that motivated to get into it. Nonetheless, it surely is more interesting than a majority of book that I’ve had to read over the course of my time in High School and now University. I had the motivation to read it for the time it was supposed to be read, yet, did not manage to do so, and decided to result to watching the 2014 film adaptation, but only managed about half of that before I decided that it was not worth it, and would not exactly recommend the film to anyone.
Despite the book taking me quite some time to finish, I would recommend it. The protagonist of the novel, Isserley, may not be a character that readers would be easily be able to relate to. The novel as a whole gives readers something to think about, incorporating some themes regarding colonization and race, but with a science fiction twist. As known by some of you already, I’m not the biggest fan of science fiction; everyone has their own likes and dislikes when it comes to genres and sci-fi is simply just not my cup of tea. Despite this, I quite enjoyed this novel. The science fiction elements was not that great that it interrupted the overall plot and message of what the author was trying to communicate, so all in all, it was a rather easy and engaging read that didn’t feel like a chore.
All in all, to me, Faber does a good job of communicating issues such as otherness (that can be linked to race in recent times), class and capitalism, and consumerism with a sci-fi twist on them. This in turn, makes the novel more enjoyable and understandable, especially as it still is set in the current world in modern times.
Overall, I give this book 3 out of 5 stars.