Apr 30, 2014

Life After Life, by Kate Atkinson

I read this for my bookstore's book club and absolutely loved it. It's the story of Ursula, born in England in 1910; plain enough, but there's a twist: when she dies, she goes back to her birth and lives another life. Sometimes she dies as a baby or a child, sometimes as an old woman, sometimes as a young woman, and every time she lives, her life is a little different. It's a study in what-ifs, a paean to our human propensity to hypotheticals. I loved Atkinson's writing; her characters are just so very British, and she does an amazing job describing situations as unthinkable as the London Blitz, or the Allied bombing of Berlin. It's a long book, but took me only a few days to read because I couldn't put it down. I was worried about it being repetitious, but the perspectives are so different each time that it wasn't boring at all. This novel definitely makes me want to read Atkinson's other books.

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