S. - Doug Dorst, J.J. Abrams

"One book. Two readers. A world of mystery, menace, and desire.

A young woman picks up a book left behind by a stranger. Inside it are his margin notes, which reveal a reader entranced by the story and by its mysterious author. She responds with notes of her own, leaving the book for the stranger, and so begins an unlikely conversation that plunges them both into the unknown." (source)


J. J. Abrams - writer, director and producer - is especially known for directing/producing movies like Star Trek Into Darkness and the Mission Impossible films, or working on TV series like Alias, Fringe, Person of Interest or Lost. Now he teamed up with the author Doug Dorst and created an unbelieveable reading experience around Dorst's book.

A fictional author called V. M. Straka wrote a book called "Ship of Theseus" - and that's what you hold in your hands, when you open the banderol and take the book you just purchased out of the black slipcase it's delivered in. 



The first thing you notice, when you open the book, is, that it looks like a book from a library: it has a sticker from a library on the back, on the first page you see "FOR LOAN" written and the last page of the book contains a list of people who have rented the book in the past. The second thing that catches your eye are notes, in different colours and handwritings, on nearly every page. But handle the book carefully so non of the additional material, you're going to discover over the course of this exceptional reading experience, falls out of the book (I speak from personal experience, that it's quite annoying to find the right pages again ;)). "What additional stuff?" you're certainly asking now. Well, J. J. Abrams and Doug Dorst didn't only write one story together, in reality they created two. 

First "Ship of Theseus", a story about a man who can't remember anything about his past and then another one that consists of notes and markings by two people who have read Ship of Theseus and included material like postcards, letters, newspaper clippings, copies and even a map drawn on a napkin - really, there is a napkin included in this book!!! Even if I wouldn't have liked the original story, I would have instantly fallen in love with all this details. I even found a website on the internet, that seems to be created only for this book - at least I think so ;) 

I don't want to talk too much about the things you're going to find in this book, because that's an important part of the story. The only thing to say now, is that it's one of the best books I've read in a long time. I asked myself a few times if I would have bought this book only because of the story of Ship of Theseus and to be honest, I'm not sure. But the whole package is just mindblowing and in the end, I loved the story of SoT. It's some kind of mystery story combined with a love story ...

... or should I say two love stories :)

(show spoiler)

If I would have the chance to give more than five stars, well, I'd definitely do that. Five are just way too little for this book. If you are hooked now and want to see some more pictures, just check out one of my older blog entries where I posted some photos.