The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August by Claire North

GoodReads Summary:
Some stories cannot be told in just one lifetime. Harry August is on his deathbed. Again. 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.
The First Fifteen Lives of Harry AugustReview:
I’m having a hard time collecting my thoughts on this one. I almost DNF’d it because I had a really tough time with the writing style. The story jumps all over the place. Our main character, Harry August, has lived his life over and over fifteen times (presumably more by the time this story was published, but we only see fifteen). So, in the first 30%, the story is very complicated. It jumps all over the place, between several of Harry’s lives, and was filled with overly complicated explanations. A few of Harry’s lives were very science-focused which was not super interesting, but I could mostly follow it. I just didn’t like how convoluted the story seemed. But as the book progressed and we learned more about all of Harry’s lives, the more I found myself enjoying it.
This story was so complex and involved. The time that Harry spent working on his plan and toward his goals was incredible. Several lifetimes spent trying to stop the end of the world, an end he helped come about in one of his lives.
While I did find myself enjoying this story, I still don’t know that I would say I loved it. The story was fascinating, but I didn’t overly care about the characters. The things Harry saw and experienced were interesting, but the fact that he was just going to die and redo his life over in a different way made me not as invested in the events. This shouldn’t make sense because Harry still remembers all his previous lives, I was not Harry so I couldn’t seem to get invested.
Overall, this was a really interesting story that had some flaws. The introduction to the story was confusing and jumped all over the timelines of Harry’s life. At times, I had to go back and reread to figure out which life he was talking about. I can still appreciate how complex and involved this story was. I definitely think some science fiction lovers will enjoy this book.

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

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