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 liv ...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
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
“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
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
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! ...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 n ...more
it's gonna be a straight 2/5 from me, folks.
i try to avoid using half stars (at least until goodreads decides to help a girl out and make them an option) but while i don't have strong enough feelings about this to justify a two, i didn't enjoy this book enough to give it a three. so, 2.5 it is.
it was ok, in an "i was able t ...more
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
but if you knew the exact day you were going to die, how would you let those stories change the way you lived life? would you try to change the future, reminisce on the past, or just live in the present?
i love how this story explores these questions, these themes, these ideas. and does so in a very real and relatable way. it shows the fear and fearlessness, the comfort and loneliness, the impu ...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
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
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!
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, challen...more
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
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.
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 be a ...more
Have we reached a point where for a book to be regarded as ‘literary fiction’ all that is required is that it’s not genre fiction? I ask because this comes accompanied with lots of hype and buzz but personally I found it both underwhelming and eminently forgettable.
The fascinating premise asks questions about how we would live if we knew with certainty the date of our death – but this big theme gets shoved aside for what are more or less four co ...more
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
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 novel ...more