A God in Ruins

A God in Ruins

Book - 2015
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"Kate Atkinson's dazzling Life After Life explored the possibility of infinite chances and the power of choices, following Ursula Todd as she lived through the turbulent events of the last century over and over again. A GOD IN RUINS tells the dramatic story of the 20th century through Ursula's beloved younger brother Teddy--would-be poet, heroic pilot, husband, father, and grandfather--as he navigates the perils and progress of a rapidly changing world. After all that Teddy endures in battle, his greatest challenge is living in a future he never expected to have" -- provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York : Little, Brown and Company, 2015
Edition: First United States edition
ISBN: 9780316176538
0316176532
Branch Call Number: F ATKIN-K
Characteristics: 468 pages ; 25 cm

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singasong70
Mar 11, 2017

A good book, redundant as far as philosophical questions are concerned: God, war, etc., in that no one who wrestles with issues in the book wrestle with where the conscience came from, what does it mean to violate it, not to mention if and/or when they have a soul themselves that'll live on after the body is gone; appreciated Teddy as a character, perspective on the war which informed his actions after the war I thought.

j
jr3083
May 17, 2016

This book takes up one of the story threads that Atkinson explored in her earlier book 'Life after Life', but you don't need to have read 'Life after Life' to enjoy this. She tells this story fairly straight although I wasn't keen on the ending. To see my more detailed review, see https://residentjudge.wordpress.com/2016/05/18/a-god-in-ruins-by-kate-atkinson/

y
yewentan
Apr 22, 2016

I read Life After Life and really enjoyed it. I think this one is really just as good. I cannot recommend it highly enough. Read both books and you'll have a great time. By the way, I think you should read Life After Life first and then this one.

i
IV27HUjg
Apr 21, 2016

Apparently I need to give this read a second look...the audio version read by Alex Jennings is very good. However, I wasn't that enthralled, but appreciate the manner KA can put herself in other characters so well. I felt so sorry for Sonny & wanted to scream at his problem makers. I've known women like Viotet, her nasty gran & the 'servant' couple - what a perfect pitch on the Norfolk accent of another generation. Still prefer Jackson Brody character.

c
cknightkc
Sep 03, 2015

Kate Atkinson is fast becoming one of my favorite authors. Her writing demands the reader's attention, as the story is not told in sequential order which does not allow for traditional character development, but she has a unique ability to communicate broad themes (the meaning of life and the tragedy of war) in an intelligent and thought-provoking way. I agree with other reviewers that while reading LIFE AFTER LIFE first is not an absolute necessity, it did enhance A GOD IN RUINS for me.

t
toby65
Aug 31, 2015

Brilliant and beautiful. Read "Life after life" first if you can.

b
brangwinn
Aug 07, 2015

I didn’t think it could be done….to create a book as good as its predecessor, Life After Life. But Atkinson did it! This time she focuses on Ursula Todd’s brother, Teddy. Although you need not read Ursula’s story first (Life after Life) you may find this story more complete if you have some background. Flashbacks to Teddy’s childhood, his World War II years as a fighter pilot, his marriage and relationships to his child and grandchildren make this book memorable. He leads no different life than many people and the ending scene of his death in a nursing home with his granddaughter by his side brought tears to my eyes. When we think we are ordinary, we just need to reread this book to find out our importance in the world.

o
ownedbydoxies
Jul 06, 2015

I have never met a Kate Atkinson book I didn't like and the happy-streak continues. This book is wonderful. The ending is supreme. All-told a great follow-up to Life After Life.

j
jazpur
Jul 02, 2015

Delightful and insightful

lbarkema Jul 01, 2015

It took me a long time to understand what this was about, but then I realized it isn't about anything specifically-there is no plot. At times, i really enjoyed the stories, but others I didn't care for. It didn't flow well at all and it felt like she had various story ideas, couldn't pick which to include, so she included them all in no particular order. Strangely though, I can't give this less than a 3 for all it's organization problems because it's still the same writing I enjoyed in Life After Life, and as I said there were some stories that really captivated me. I probably wouldn't immediately recommend it though as it was a disappointment after Life After Life.

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booksophie
Jun 01, 2016

“A handful of heartbeats. That was what life was. A heartbeat followed by a heartbeat. A breath followed by a breath. One moment followed by another moment and then there was a last moment. Life was a s fragile as a bird's heartbeat, fleeting as the bluebells in the wood.”

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