Saturday, August 22, 2015

The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August by Claire North

The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August
by Catherine Webb, writing as Claire North

One of the more intriguing “time travel” novels I’ve ever read — my science fiction club recently read this for one of our month book discussions, and the entire group of us were all impressed by this novel! Harry August is born in 1919, lives an unremarkable life, dies in his senior years…and is born once again, under the same circumstances in 1919. When he gets back age 3, all his memories of his previous life as Harry August come flooding back to him. And this happens again and again, always with him being reborn as the same Harry August, and with all his multiple lifetimes of accumulated knowledge coming back to him as soon as his brain is developed enough to handle that much data. And he’s not alone — throughout his lives, Harry encounters, interacts with, and joins a group of fellow ouroborans (also known as kalachakrans) that call themselves the Chronos Club — who have learned to pass messages backwards in time, via their members who are about to be reborn, that help them all live comfortable lives (over and over). When one of those time-traveling messages is passed on to Harry on his death bed — “the world is ending, faster than it should” — Harry must spend several lifetimes trying to figure out who is destroying the world, and how to stop them.

This novel uses a fascinating method of time travel — not completely unique, necessarily — and features several compelling characters, particularly Harry August himelf. I highly recommend this one!

[ official The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August web site ] | [ official Catherine Webb/Kate Griffin/Claire North web site ]

Recommended by Scott C.
Bennett Martin Public Library

Have you read this? What did you think? Did you find this review helpful?

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