Review of The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August

I have to admit that I downloaded this book for the title alone (it was on a free offer at the time).  The cover really caught my eye too.  Both were quirky and promised something different.  Boy did the book deliver!

The main theme of the book is simple at first glance but far more complex as the story develops.  When the main character dies he returns to the start of his life, initially with no memory of the prior life but by around three years old the memories return.  He then has the chance to live his life, change his choices, with the knowledge of his previous life.  And he gets to do it again and again and again.

Part of the reason this appealed to me is that it’s a thought I’ve had down the years – what would you do if you found yourself way back in your life but with all the knowledge you have now?  (Who said authors were normal?)  Would you want to keep things on track, rebuild the life you have?  Could you?  Could you act and react to events in the right way when you already know what’s going to happen?  This story takes that one step further though – making it happen to the main character at the end of every life.

I won’t spoil the story by going into the plot in any more detail, other than to say it builds up layer after layer turning the book into a real page turner.  The characters are very well developed, especially the main character, with no cardboard cutout baddies or angelic heroes.  The writing is tight and enjoyable.  Highly recommended, and I’ll be looking for more work by the author.

Check it out at Amazon US or Amazon UK.


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