• Clay's Ark

  • Patternist, Book 3
  • By: Octavia E. Butler
  • Narrated by: Neal Ghant
  • Length: 7 hrs and 17 mins
  • 4.4 out of 5 stars (857 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

In a violent near-future, Asa Elias Doyle and her companions encounter an alien life form so heinous and destructive, they exile themselves in the desert so as not to contaminate other humans. To resist the compulsion to infect others is mental agony, but to succumb is to relinquish humanity and free will. Desperate, they kidnap a doctor and his two daughters as they cross the wasteland--and endanger the world.

©1984 Octavia E. Butler (P)2014 Audible Inc.

Featured Article: The Essential Octavia Butler—A Listening List for Fans and Newcomers Alike


Octavia E. Butler was a renowned Black author who wrote in, and revolutionized, the science fiction genre. Her body of work, including such acclaimed novels as Kindred and Parable of the Sower, is lauded for its trenchant social commentary and continued pertinence. When it comes to sci-fi, there are few authors more impactful than Octavia E. Butler. Here's everything you need to know about the visionary writer.

What listeners say about Clay's Ark

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

a little confusing

I'm not exactly sure how this goes into book 1 and 2. Seems like it belongs in a totally different series. It was a bit of a struggle to finish. I will go on to book 4 so at least I finished the series. I love Octavia but this wasn't so great. the narration was mediocre at best.

12 people found this helpful

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Dystopian and Disturbing

This book is not at all connected to the previous stories. If you enjoy a dystopian apocalyptic story, then you might enjoy this. If you were looking for this story to be a continuation of the plot that involved Doro, Anyanwu, Mary and the pattern, you will be disappointed.

11 people found this helpful

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Love Butler, loved the first two Patternist books

But this story was tiresome and overtold. And has very little to do with the Patternist storyline at all, really. It’s your basic epidemiological apocalypse story - admittedly, written before the field was glutted, but not a particularly good example of the subgenre, in any case. I’m moving on to the final book of the series, for completeness’s sake. It least there are telepaths in it - there are none to be found in Clay’s Ark.

9 people found this helpful

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Amazing!

Why isn't this a movie? What a riveting,well written story. I could not stop listening!

7 people found this helpful

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How to connect the books together

The story line was great. My struggle was wanting to see familiar names that would be attached to the next books.

6 people found this helpful

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Octavia Butler never disappoints!!

The story was so riveting that I felt like it ended way too soon. The characters were nicely developed, the storyline was intriguing, and the speaker stayed true to the voice of each character.

5 people found this helpful

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This is not book 3 of The Patternists

I kept waiting for its connection to the first 2 books. There is none. Completely different story.

10 people found this helpful

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So so dark

Her writing is so solid. I feel like i missed a boom or something... The story starts a giant leap into the future and i guess I'm stuck in a more formulaic story rut. It was interesting, but very dark.

4 people found this helpful

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I didnt really get it.

This story was very different from the first two stories in the series. it didn't have any of the same characters which was disappointing to me.

3 people found this helpful

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Not the story I was expecting.

This was a departure from what I was looking for. It is not a direct continuation from mind of my mind but something entirely different. It is still interesting, but not really what I was after.

3 people found this helpful

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  • tamsin
  • 02-22-22

my least favourite so far

I really wish it was read by a woman. Although there are sections from a male narrative the fact that two of the main characters are young girls felt so off having a grown man with a deep voice try to manipulate his voice to fit the characters. That was a massive downside for me. I enjoyed the story for the most part although it is quite different to the previous books

1 person found this helpful

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  • Rudy Lorentz
  • 04-04-17

Not Octavia Butler's best...

This book wasn't as listenable as the first two in the series. I didn't enjoy it as much as it felt like a departure from the other books.

1 person found this helpful