Shakespeare at the end of the world: Why 'Station Eleven' is your 2014 must read

For the final MashableReads selection of the year, we’ve chosen Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel. Station Eleven is a beautiful, haunting book that will stay with you long after you read it, and we hope that you will read along with us in the MashableReads book club.

In Station Eleven, St. John Mandel manages to take a topic that has been well-worn by recent fiction and transform it into a completely new literary experience. In the near-distant future of Station Eleven, a pandemic has killed most of the human population, and civilization as we know it has crumbled. Traveling by caravan around the Great Lakes region is a group of actors and musicians who perform Shakespeare for those left alive. Station Eleven explores multiple timelines, including the decades leading up to society’s collapse, and the relationships between individuals and art that persist even past the end of the world.

Station Eleven has been the recipient of numerous accolades this year, having recently been named a finalist for the prestigious National Book Award. Rich with references — from the Bard himself to an episode of Star TrekStation Eleven is unlike anything else you’ll read this year.

All this month, we’ll be discussing the book on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr and Goodreads.

On January 13, join the book club and the author herself to talk about the book in a live Google Hangout. If you’re in the New York City area, stop by Mashable HQ to sign up for an in-person meeting with the author.

In the meantime, get a sneak peek of the novel below. Happy reading!

Want more great book recommendations from Mashable? Join MashableReads, Mashable’s social book club. You’ll have the chance to win free copies of new novels, and participate in conversations with various authors.

BONUS: Authors in Conversation with MashableReads

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