Life After Life is an intriguing work by Kate Atkinson. Ursula Todd, the main character, is born in 1910 and dies. She is then born again and again living out a variety of themes on essentially the same life. The novel brings into question how much free will does an individual have. It also looks at how our choices shape our future. The very construction of the novel is unique and will leave the reader with much to think about.
Atkinson is a wonderful writer. She brings her characters to life (and then to life again). She can tell the same story in new ways making it interesting all over again. There is no question that she is truly talented.
However, I did not, especially, like this novel. There was no growth. I am fairly certain that this is at least part if the commentary that Atkinson is making in Life After Life. Yet, even with that speculation, I am left unsettled. Life is growth, without growth is Ursula really living. It could be argued that she is growing in each life, or there could just be changes in her lives. Yet any growth is not followed up with the ending of the novel.
This is a rare novel. It is both brilliant and lacking at the same time.
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