It's 1969 in New York City's Lower East Side, and word has spread of the arrival of a mystical woman, a traveling psychic who claims to be able to tell anyone the day they will die. The Gold children—four adolescents on the cusp of self-awareness—sneak out to hear their fortunes.
The prophecies inform their ne ...more
"And what if I change?" It seems impossible that Varya's future is already inside her like an actress just offstage, waiting decades to leave the wings.
"Then you'd be special. 'Cause most people don't."
2 1/2 stars. I have a lot of mixed feelings about The Immortalists. Though there were parts I enjoyed, I was left feeling underwhelmed and like I'd recommend many other similar books before recommending this one.
You should be aware that this is literary fiction and focuses in depth on the lives ...more
Jewish Kabbalists believe "The Tree of Life" to be a diagrammatic representation of the process by which the Universe came into being".
Jewish Kabbalists also don't envision time and space as pre-existing.
A wonderful -symbolically fitting book cover -- The mysticism of the fortune teller mixed with traditiona ...more
In a novel, so centered on death, there is a tremendous amount of life and living within these pages.
Beginning in 1969, the four Gold siblings boldly knock on the door of a fortune teller who then proceeds to impart to them the one thing nobody knows when they enter this world- the exact day you will die.
For better or worse, Varya, Daniel, Klara and Simon cope with this heavy information, but, their approach to life, t ...more
“There are two major theories about how to stop aging…”
“…It sounds like you’re saying we can choose to live. Or we can choose to survive.”
Chloe Benjamin’s The Immortalists is a thoughtfully executed novel written in simple, yet often poetic, prose that allowed the characters’ voices at their most forceful to shine on their own past the narrative itself. More than that, it is a novel crafted around a question we ...more
Imagine you are a kid and together with your siblings you sneak out of the house to go see a gypsy woman who is said to be able predict the day you die… It’s 1969 in New York City’s East side, and word has spread about a mystical woman, a traveling psychic….You go to see her and all of you get to hear ‘your’ date.
You go home and then…. Life goes on. Will you believe this prophecy, will it influence the way you live? Will you be able to handle it? How will you live your life?
4.5 stars! This was such a memorable and interesting read that had such a unique storyline with a profound and special message within the pages of this book that had us asking ourselves so many ...more
If you could know the exact day of your death, would you want to find out? If you did find out, how would knowing that information affect how you lived your life? These questions are at the heart of The Immortalists , Chloe Benjamin's deeply affecting and beautifully written new book.
In 1969, growing up on New York's Lower East Side, the Gold siblings learn that there is a traveling fortune teller in their neighborhood who can tell anyone the day they will die. While not ...more
I actually ended up liking this more than I expected!
The premise was very intriguing. Four siblings meet a psychic who tells them the exact date they will die. It then influences how they choose to live their lives.
This felt more like a historical fiction/contemporary than fantasy/sci-fi so be warned!
It's definitely a slow burning story where you follow each characters throughout their struggles.
I enjoyed it!
The book focuses on four siblings. At the beginning, as children and young teens growing up in Manhattan, they visit a fortune teller who tells them separately and secretly the date they will each die. The rest of the book is broken into four parts, each part focusing on one sibling. It’s not so much about whether the pre ...more
It's 1969 and the 4 young Gold siblings decide to chance it when a gypsy comes to town to find out when their expiration dates are up.
These prophecies dictate how their lives unfold because as much as they don't want to believe, their own self fulfilling prophecies will lead them down a path: Simon, the youngest, lives his life recklessly trying to fulfi ...more
What a unique and compelling premise. Would you want to know the date of your death? And if you did, how would that knowledge change the way you lived? If you change your life could that be the very thing that might hasten your demise? Or would you just try and make the most of every day?
The book opens with 4 siblings visiting a fortune teller who tells each of them the exact day they would die. After this intriguing beginning, the story is broken into four parts, one for each of the s ...more
The Immortalists is a different sort of book. Hard to classify, and while it may not be for everybody, it was an addictive read for me. Four young siblings find out the date of each of their deaths from a gyspsy fortune teller. The reader follows each sibling as "the day" edges near, and the way the stories were arranged and overlapped between each character added further ...more
And the utterance of dates murmured by an unreliable mystical woman on a scorching hot summer's day is the focus of this story. It's 1969 in New York City and the four young Gold children set out to find this elusive woman who will tell them the dates of their deaths.
Would you honestly want to know? The gift of life is like handing over the reins of a wild runa ...more
So, would you want to know the date of your death? I would not, but it’s a fascinating premise for a novel. Four siblings venture to a fortune teller in 1969 and learn the exact dates of their deaths. The book then takes on each sibling and shows us how their life plays out. Do they live their lives differently for knowing the date? Do their actions lead them to die on the intended date? Do those that are given a long life take advantage of the time or waste it?
It’s a sad book. I wanted to wrap ...more
BEWARE the woman on Hester Street.
As the story begins, it's 1969 New York when four bored adolescent siblings....just for a bit of fun....pool their allowances and sneak out to track down a Seer they heard tell about who could predict the date of their death.
What they discover changes each life forever.
One by one, the individual stories are told, the dates of demise divulged as we follow a young Varya 13, Daniel 11, Klara 9 and Simon 7 throughout their often heartbreaking, challengi...more
So we follow these kids through the years and see how this information changes the way they live and their relationships with their family and others.
I really enjoyed this book!
What if you knew the day, the month, the year of your death? Would that make you live a different life? Would you try to compress all of life's experiences, the good, the seedy, and the bad into a short life projection? Would you languish your days knowing that you had many years in front of you and ...more
I was lured in wanting to know the fate of the four Gold siblings whose date of death is foretold by a nomadic fortuneteller. To my amazement this was not the best part. Mesmerizing and so well told. The publishing date of January 9, 2018 can’t come soon enough. The Immortalists is bound to b ...more
So many themes in this book, fate vs freewill, happiness versus duty/obligation, freedom versus family and many more.
It is certainly a book that leaves you pondering your own goals, hopes and dreams for the life that you are given.
Would your life change if you had been given the date on which you would die?
Set in 1969 in New York City's Lower East Side, word spreads that there is a a traveling psychic who claims she can tell folks the date of their deaths. . The Gold children—four adolescents on the cusp of self-awareness—sneak out to hear their fortunes but how will it affect them as individuals and as a family.
Without doubt an interesting and intriguing premise and a book that caught me by surprise for many ...more
This book's prologue was absolutely bloody brilliant. It had me engaged immediately and I could not stop ...more
An enjoyable family saga/character study with the tiniest dash of magical realism, but it's missing something. Without the something, it's unmemorable and unremarkable.
The kids of the Gold family have a gypsy psychic tell them the dates of their deaths, which is sort of used as the premise of the book. Mostly it's just used as an excuse to explore what it means to live one's "best life." Try to cram as much life in as possible before death catches up (and maybe inadvertently cause ...more
”They wind through the neighborhood, all four of them: Varya, the eldest; Daniel, eleven; Klara, nine; and Simon, seven. Daniel leads the way, taking them down Clinton to Delancey, turning left at Forsyth. They walk the perimeter of Sara D. Roosevelt Park, keeping to the shade beneath the trees.”
It’s there, in this Lower East-Side neighborhood, that Daniel hears the ...more
These are the questions Chloe Benjamin has us consider in this beautiful novel. In 1969, 4 siblings, ranging in age from 13 to 7, visit a fortune teller who tells them the exact date of their death. How they handle this information is told through each one's story, with ...more
Her first novel, THE ANATOMY OF DREAMS (Atria, 2014), received the Edna Ferber Fiction Book Award and was longlisted for the 2014 Flaherty-Dunnan First Novel Prize.
Her n ...more