What if you had the chance to live your life again and again, until you finally got it right?
During a snowstorm in England in 1910, a baby is born and dies before she can take her first breath. During a snowstorm in England in 1910, the same baby is born and lives to tell the tale.
What if there were second chances? And third chances? In fact an infinite number of chances to live your life? Would you eventually be able to save the world from its own inevitable destiny? And would you even want to?
Life After Life follows Ursula Todd as she lives through the turbulent events of the last century again and again. With wit and compassion, she finds warmth even in life’s bleakest moments, and shows an extraordinary ability to evoke the past. Here is Kate Atkinson at her most profound and inventive, in a novel that celebrates the best and worst of ourselves.
©2013 Kate Atkinson (P)2013 Random House Audiobooks
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"What a waste, Kate."
So disappointing - I was so excited to download a new Kate Atkinson novel but this book was not the treat I was expecting. The story was so boring and, with the full intention of the author, extremely repetitive. The book had none of Kate's intricate and exciting plots that unravel and all makes sense in the end. If I hadn't been listening to it with someone else bothering to read it to me, I would never have finished reading it. Come on Kate, you can do better!
"Challenging and deeply sattisfying"
An excellent book! The first Kate Atkinson I've really enjoyed since Human Croquet, although this is deeper and much more complicated.
I found the publisher's blurb "What if you had the chance to live your life again and again, until you finally got it right?" to be unhelpful, though. The story told is not about this but is the well-written details of Ursula's various probable lives, each changed minutely or wholly by her own unknowing choices - or (sometimes) the choices of others.
This is a challenging read and although the first half, dealing with Ursula's various childhoods, were very enjoyable and I was completely gripped by it, the second half, covering Ursula's violent and difficult marriage, or in another life, her work as an ARP during WW2 where nothing - especially dead bodies and bombs - is glossed over and yet another where she starves with her child in Germany at the end of WW2.
There appears to be no overall story to this book, no getting it "right" and no ultimate end.
It was a wonderful read, exceedingly well-written and beautifully narrated.
I look forward to seeing this novel as a contender for some high-profile prizes in 2013.
Definitely,It was a good story and beautifully narrated.
Very easy to listen to.
A bit too long for that-but it didn't take long.
"Return to form for Atkinson"
I really enjoyed this, it’s a beautiful zig zag and meditation on the permeations of life and how fragile it is. Its images and message will stay with me for a good while I think.
"A Must Listen"
What a book. It is fantastically well narrated, the story is rich with characters and endless possibilities and Kate Atkinson does a great job holding all the threads of the story together to great a suspenseful story. There are points when I felt I could not listen anymore knowing some awful fate it about to unfold. The descriptions of London in the blitz brings something to life that constant reference to has dulled with parts unashamedly bringing a tear to my eye. A Must Listen
"The Best Book I've Read in Years"
Again and again and again. This is an extraordinary story about getting life right, wrong and false starts.
The scenes in the Blitz are so vivid and detailed that you feel you're right there with the characters.
No I haven't.
You'd need a whole day to do that and besides I didn't want it to ever end and by rights (listen to the story!) it shouldn't.
This book is going to be a modern classic.
I was really looking forward to this book after enjoying other ones by the same author. I was disappointed with this one. It just keeps reliving the same story slightly differently, not in a fascinating way, but just repetitive.
I kept drifting off whilst listening it was so boring! Have given up on it now.
the book thief
A bit monotone
Can't even remember their names
"Intriguing and engaging"
Clever structure and wonderful characters. keeps you guessing and opens up endless possibilities
I thought the characters were really engaging. I want to be Izzy (although that's a bit disreputable!) but I liked so many others - Ursula herself, Sylvia, Hugh, Teddy - all people I felt I got to know really well
The sections about the Blitz were very moving and evocative
"Liked this book"
I really liked most of Kate Atkinson's books, this was no exception and there were parts of it where I was totally gripped by the story. However, some bits were super boring and a bit confusing.
I would compare it to The Time Traveller's Wife, but its not nearly as good as that made me cry!
Fenella Woolgar narrates the story well.
I think as this book jumps back and forth its probably easier to read it so you can go back and check the dates, I got super confused with all the Hitler and Eva Braun stuff jumping backwards and forwards, and it was a bit too descriptive and dull.
yes, I would recommend. You want to try and put the pieces together of this puzzle. The plot is an excellent device for story telling
that, sometimes, no matter how many times the character gets another go at her timeline she seems to be destined to meet the same kind of characters or the same kind of hardship or adversities, just in slightly differeing ways
She is a beautiful reader and adds nuances to the characters voices.
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