Science Fiction and Fantasy Association of New Zealand

Fifteen Lives The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August
by Claire North

Supplied for review by Hachette New Zealand

Reviewed By: Simon Litten

The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August by Claire North is a time travel book, but a time travel book with a difference. Harry is one of those people who can relive their lives over and over again changing what happens and being able to resolve those "what if" questions that bedevil ordinary people’s thoughts.

This would be the best reliving life tale, bar none, I have read. How would you cope waking up to the realisation that you have lived this life before? Harry went mad and killed himself – but that was no escape as it happened again; and again, and again. But if the situation is hopeless killing yourself is a viable (yes, viable) option, because next time round you won’t be in that situation.

Harry belongs to the Cronus Club, a group dedicated to helping re-lifers come to terms with their strange ability and to stopping major changes to the timestream (because that causes problems for the future). The Cronus Club also operates a message service passing messages up and down the timestream. But Harry has a serious problem: a fellow re-lifer is trying to make a quantum mirror (in order to know the answer to everything) and is slowly destroying the future and killing re-lifers to achieve this aim. For as his lives accumulate the enemy gets closer to his solution and Harry still has to find out his enemy’s real name before he can stop him being born.

As for the author Claire North, she (or he) is a mystery as this is a pseudonym of an already successful author – and as yet no one is saying who that is. But she is writing a second book! In the meantime reread Harry August and see if you can find a way to hurry this up.

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