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Summary

Jeff Winston's life is not how he imagined it would be.  

An unhappy marriage and unrewarding job - and then he died. Aged 43. And woke up again, back in his college room, in 1963, age 18. With all his memories intact. If he applies those memories, he can be rich - he can have anything he wants - in this new chance at life.  

Until he dies at 43 and wakes up in his 18-year-old body again...and again in a continuous 25-year cycle, each time starting from scratch at the age of 18 to reclaim lost loves, make a fortune or remedy past mistakes. And then, in one replayed life, he meets a woman who knows all too well what he is experiencing.   

Replay is a novel of gripping adventure, romance and fascinating speculation on the nature of time. Replay asks the question, 'What if you could live your life over again?'  

©2019 Ken Grimwood (P)2019 Orion Publishing Group

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A True Classic of Science Fiction

Wonderful book examining the Time Travel genre. A proper grown up novel!
Replay starts slowly and builds it’s momentum, though not ever frenetic, it instils a real need to find out what happens next.
It draws out the story in such a superbly written style, you will enjoy not only the story but the beautiful way it is told
One piece of advice I would add is, don’t give up on it in the first couple of chapters, persevere, it is worth it

13 people found this helpful

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Wonderfully Rich

The ability to combine an initiative take on a well explored genre with such a descriptive and compelling world the characters find themselves living in is truly immersive. One of favourite reads of all time. Finished this in two sittings. Books like this are all too rare a treat.

4 people found this helpful

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Brilliant original story

So glad I bought this book. A little like Ground Hog Day but with a life span rather than a day.
Hope there will be a sequel.

3 people found this helpful

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Great concept - slightly disappointing ending

Won’t spoil it for anyone but the book had me intrigued all the way through, the ending was a bit of a let down as I was expecting more in terms of answers.

3 people found this helpful

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Epic!!!!

I absolutely loved this book, listened to it in two days and hated having to take breaks.
Best time travel book I've read.
Gone straight into my top books of all time.
I usually start another straight away, but I feel like I need time to settle down after finishing this one.

7 people found this helpful

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Interesting premise that turns into nothingness

I didn't want to give less than two stars because I only got about two hours in, but let me tell you, in those two hours this writer somehow manages to turn what could be a really interesting premise into something that sends you to sleep. It just felt like the protagonist - who is pretty much an empty shell of a human from what I can tell - monotonously telling us about all the chicks he's BANGED and all the money he's made and what he's bought with that money. It just all felt a little bit hollow. It really wasn't my cup of tea. Maybe it gets better? But as I was fed up with two hours of it, I couldn't really see the point in sticking with it as I was just annoyed by that point.

2 people found this helpful

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Mysoginistic

This story is the wet dream of the author who had the opportunity to start over , over and over again whilst bringing his knowledge and cognisance from past lives in order to gamble become instant billionaire and screwing anything with a pulse and that includes his restarted 14 year old wife who is hounded by the mysoginistic restarter like some entitled pedophile.

Seriously , this is more like a trashy paper back for men who possibly read Lolita more than once and more than they ought.

Don't buy it!!

2 people found this helpful

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Finished in 22 hours...

Listened to this book in 2 sittings, over 22 hours. What an incredible insight into the human condition of love, loss, regret and ‘what if.’ One of my most engrossing and engaging reads ever and incredibly intellectual, whilst being entertaining via a great performance. Can’t recommend enough.

2 people found this helpful

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inevitably overly sentimental

Good premise if not original. Starts well but there are only so many times a life can be relived without it becoming boring and the journey becoming internal and ultimately depressing and futile.
Managed to finish but it was a bit of a slog. Nothing surprising .
Narrator was reasonable .

5 people found this helpful

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Yuck

After two chapters I stopped. Pervy old man in a young body ranting about how the youth of the 80s are dead eyed and the progress of the 80s is apocalyptic compared to the naivete and joy of the 60s (what about those rights though Jeff huh) and commenting that his 18 year old girlfriend is so much more innocent than any young girl in the future because Madonna. Ew. Waste of money.

1 person found this helpful

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  • chapmaan
  • 07-04-21

One of my all time favourites

This is the one, every reader has one, dog eared, coffee stained, read repeatedly.

The audio version didn't disappoint.

I first read this in the 80s and King's novel about JFK's assassination has some similarities.

The story poses an interesting question. Would you do things differently if you were given a second chance? How much of that decision is based on who you've become and how much is based on local knowledge? How much would you remember if you found yourself reliving your youth?

Like Ground Hog day, the answer for most is in the nuance. Its not about drastic change, but rather fine tuning. Including of one's self.

People say hindsight is an exact science. This tends to sway us towards being more negative about the lows and more positive about the highs.

I think Replay is an example of how most of us would approach such a situation. And in that it has a reality that some other stories miss.

Highly recommend,

1 person found this helpful

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  • Amin Y.
  • 11-06-21

Enjoyed it... Loved it...!!!

I really liked how the story developed and wished that there was a sequel to this.

Also, the performance was really great.

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Profile Image for Katia
  • Katia
  • 01-04-21

What a gem

First off, the book is absolutely fantastic. It messed me up good, wrenched my heart, and stirred my emotions. It also made me appreciate life, and realize just how little time we all have here.

Second, the narrator did a terrific job. If I could choose one audiobook to convince someone to start listening to books, this would be the one.

His cadence was always on point, and he did the voices in a way I never had to wonder who he was speaking on behalf of. The different accents he portrayed seemed impeccable to me, and even the slight differences in male and female voices he did made things easy to follow. I can't wait to listen to more of the books he narrated.

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  • Georgi G.
  • 07-01-21

Don’t hesitate just buy

Been a while since I loved every single minute of a newly found book. It can scratch the itch of everyone who likes time travel and at the same time drowns you in the characters’ ups and downs in a consuming way.

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  • Michael Daniel Mortensen
  • 26-08-20

SPOILER FREE REVIEW

A real feel-good story that doesn't get boring.
The reason this book is super difficult to review without spoilers, is because it has very little plot, making mostly everything a spoiler. The lack of plot is usually something that turns me off right away, but there's a feel-good essence about this book, and you're never bored with it either, even if it IS pretty darn slow in the beginning.

I feel like Ken Grimwood glanced over way too many things that would have been great to have been dived a bit more into. I feel like too many times was something started, but not concluded, and I feel like maybe Mr. Grimwood might have written this book without planning anything ahead, as it often seems to go a certain direction, only for that direction never to be explored again.
This honestly bothered me quite a bit (also the fact that, at one point, the difference between Cinema movies and TV is explained, and the conclusions he makes are dead wrong, but this is not a major thing in the book, it just really bothered me personally).

So why did I give it four stars Overall?:
Well, like I said, it's a nice feel-good book, and it does all seem like the exact thing someone might do, if he/she was granted this gift/curse of reliving ones life multiple times. It also explores, or at least touches upon, many interesting ideas and many emotions that one might have to go through, that are unique to an experience like this.
A very interesting read. A very thoughtful read. And it's funny how the ending almost has an ominous feeling to it, even though it isn't.

A similar (better?) book:
I couldn't help but compare this book to a somewhat similar book; "The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August"
Replay came first, with almost 30 years. But this other "Harry August" book has a very specific plot, and a great story, so I suggest maybe checking both of these two books out and see for yourself, which one you think is better.
I will say, though, that I think these two books as very different in story, plot, and style, though extremely similar in concept.

Would I recommend Replay?:
Yes. Though it would never win any prices for outstanding writing, character development, or plot outlining. It makes sense that it won the "Best novel" at World Fantasy Award in 1988, as this was a great and somewhat groundbreaking idea and read back then. And like I said it really IS a nice read and has a very rare feel-good feeling to it, even though it isn't always happy.
I wish it had more relevant and thought-through conflict though, but oh well, to each their own, and it's still a great and wholesome read, written in a somewhat unique way.

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  • per erik loeff
  • 04-01-20

Great!

I am a science fiction /alternative reality fan on my heart (alternative reality = Dark Tower series by Stephen King etc) so this book ruled. It became so much more than I expected! So I will recommend it wildly! (Also Dark Tower, I think you will enjoy it if you like this! The movie is ruining the story btw.)

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  • Dean Van Es
  • 17-07-19

What a great book!

What a nice surprise, one of those rare books I just couldn't put down, absolutely lived it.

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Profile Image for Erik Gjessing
  • Erik Gjessing
  • 11-07-19

One of the best books I've ever listened to

A great story with a great narrator. A beautiful book about the delicacy of life and the struggle to make the most out of it.