'ONE OF THE FICTION HIGHLIGHTS OF THE DECADE' Judy Finnigan, Richard and Judy Book Club
Featured in the Richard and Judy Book Club, the BBC Radio 2 Book Club and the Waterstones Book Club
Winner of the John W. Campbell Award
Shortlisted for the Arthur C. Clarke Award
SOME STORIES CANNOT BE TOLD IN JUST ONE LIFETIME
No matter what he does or the decisions he makes, when death comes, Harry always returns to where he began, a child with all the knowledge of a life he has already lived a dozen times before.
Nothing ever changes - until now.
As Harry nears the end of his eleventh life, a little girl appears at his bedside. 'I nearly missed you, Doctor August,' she says. 'I need to send a message.'
This is the story of what Harry does next, and what he did before, and how he tries to save a past he cannot change and a future he cannot allow.
This is the extraordinary journey of one unforgettable character - a story of friendship and betrayal, loyalty and redemption, love and loneliness and the inevitable march of time. Perfect for readers of How to Stop Time by Matt Haig, The Keeper of Lost Things by Ruth Hogan and Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman.
'Utterly readable, utterly believable and compelling' Judy Finnigan, Richard and Judy Book Club
'Beautiful and gripping' Guardian
'An astonishing re-invention of the time-travel narrative. Bold, magical and masterful' M. R. Carey, author of THE GIRL WITH ALL THE GIFTS
'Terrific, smart and entertaining' Patrick Ness
'The writing is impeccable . . Plus Harry is a fascinating main character' Heat
'I don't say this lightly but The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August is one of the top ten books I've ever read' James Dashner, bestselling author of THE MAZE RUNNER
Also by Claire North
The Sudden Appearance of Hope (winner of the World Fantasy Award)
The End of the Day (shortlisted for the Sunday Times/PFD Young Writer of the Year Award)
84K (shortlisted for the Philip K. Dick Award)
The Pursuit of William Abbey
Notes from the Burning Age
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Suitably shrouded in mystery, this inventive time-travel story is the brainchild of “an acclaimed British author” writing under the pseudonym Claire North. Harry August is a redheaded orphan who discovers he’s a kalachakra—a person destined to be reborn each time he dies, coming into the world in the exact same time and place each time. Whether you’re a fan of sci-fi, thrillers or literary fiction, you’ll be mesmerised by this iconoclastic hero, who eventually receives a message passed down through generations: the end of the world is accelerating. As Harry August journeys throughout his multiple lifetimes, he embarks on a gripping quest to alter the future.
In this novel, Claire North, the pseudonym of an unnamed British author, focuses on the life of Harry August, a man who dies only to be reborn as the same person. The illegitimate son of a wealthy landowner, Harry's life is challenging not only because he is one of the kalachakra, a small group of people who have the ability to relive their lives, but also because he is a mnemonic, an individual who can remember all the details of their past lives. Harrys remarkable abilities make him the victim to all types of people throughout the novel, such as Franklin Phearson, the psychologist who tortures August until he tells him all about the future. North's fast-paced novel gets bogged down by long-winded explanations of time travel. Despite this minor flaw, the novel contains real heart. When Harry confronts his distant father or interacts with an old romance, we are reminded of true love's power and timelessness.
This book was recommended to me and now I wish to recommend to you. It has some sophisticated ideas, and jumps through the story in a way that draws you in . The idea of Harry August as a character is well thought out, and the story, even as it jumps through many lives, follows an order not of time but of a progression of character-building. There are times when the topics could have become mundane or hard to follow, but the wit of Harry (and the author) and dialogue between characters kept the book rolling seamlessly into each life we loved through. A fantastic book, a great read and well worth paying for. I can see this being a great film with the right director.
One of the most amazing, original and griping novels I have ever read. This author is truly exceptional.
An excellent read
Jealous of anyone who is just about to read the first page. Enjoy, it is good.