Sunday, July 15, 2007

Book Review: Replay

I just finished a book recommended to me by some folks on a message board I frequent quite a bit. The book is Replay written by Ken Grimwood, published in 1986.

The novel poses the question: "What if you could live your life over again, knowing the mistakes you'd made before?"

Jeff Winston, a forty-three year old man gets several chances to do just that. Stuck in a dead-end job and a tepid marriage, he dies in 1988 and wakes up to find himself in 1963, at the age of eighteen, back in college. It's all the same...but different: Jeff knows what the future holds. He knows who will win every World Series, every Kentucky Derby, even how to win on Wall Street. The one thing he doesn't know is: why has he been chosen to replay his life? And how many times must he win-and lose-everything he loves?

It is really an amazing story and one that gives the reader a lot to think about.

I know it hit home to me in a couple ways. I'm forty-two now - turn forty-three next year. I had some issues with my heart back in 2005 - a leaky valve that the doctor's were unsure how long I'd been with the condition (luckily they caught it early and were able to repair things). In reading the book, I inevitably had to ponder what I would have done in the protagonist's situation (if I had to relive 1983 to 2008 over and over again - wow, weird, that's twenty years exactly off the book's span). One thing for sure I would have done was to prevent the situation that lead to my son's birth injury in 1995.

If you haven't read Replay, see if you can find a copy at the library or local book store. I'm sure you'll find it fascinating indeed.

Amazon listing for the book

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