Life After Life by Kate Atkinson
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Source: Uncorrected Proof provided by publisher
The essential idea of Life After Life is similar to the movie, Groundhog Day, except that it does not repeat only the one day but a number of pivotal life events from which there is a chance of an alterable future. A concept, I’m sure, each one of us would love to experience… What would have done differently? If you had the chance, would you save your loved one or would you save the world?
Life After Life began with a very interesting little chapter that got me truly excited. From this, I expected some sort of intrigue –a war spy sort. However, the book really began with the birth of Ursula Todd and her chances at life. At first, I was enjoying the novelty of this concept applied to Ursula. I enjoyed hanging out with Ursula and her family but halfway through the book, it wore off and I was getting restless as I felt this isn’t going anywhere…
Unfortunately, Ursula also wasn’t going anywhere fast. It took her sometime to affect that which is most precious to her in life and there were just lives where she drifted away. She was, to me, too slippery to grasp. I really wasn’t sure what to make of her.
I might be a bit slow but I finally got the point right at the end when it was all spelt out for me –despite, I realised retrospectively, all the clues in the book. I was a little disappointed as my expectation was for something grander. However, after a certain period of consideration, it really is a lovely story.
Thank you, Random House via The Reading Room, for copy of ARC