In the afterlife you may find that God is the size of a microbe and unaware of your existence. Or you may find the afterlife contains only those people whom you remember. In some afterlives you are split into all your different ages, in some you are recreated based on your credit card records, and in others you are forced to live with annoying versions of yourself that represent what you could have been.
In these wonderfully imagined tales - at once funny, wistful and unsettling - Eagleman kicks over the chessboard of traditional notions and offers us a dazzling lens through which to see ourselves here and now. His stories are rooted in science and romance and awe at our mysterious existence: a mixture of hope, love and death that cuts through human nature at innovative angles.
A light-hearted collection of ecclectic musings on the afterlife (or lack thereof). These brief views, each expressed in just a few pages, range from pithy cynicism to profound reflection on the value of your life before the hereafter.
Most have a certain level of humour, some whimsical or philosophical and others cynical. I did enjoy a few that were like a good Punch and Judy show - causing self reflection in the face of apparent absurdity. My favourite is 'Subjunctive', in which you must learn to live with all the alternative versions of 'you' that might have been.
It should be noted that many of these tales tackle issues of the nature and relationship of 'God' in our life, (and subsequent afterlife) - none of which conform to standard religious views.
Overall, the various 'afterlives' are highly immaginative. Some are intellectually amusing ideas (like the quark that is drawing our illusions of reality), others an amusing poke at aspects of the lives we live. A quick easy read, probably best taken in random small doses.
This was an utterly astounding journey into 40 places that made me sit back and exclaim "What the...?!" - each story was between 2-5 pages, and was over within minutes... but what minutes! Some of the 'afterlives' were just too wierd... but some were almost downright appealing!
The biggest problem with this book was that because the stories are numerous and brief, it's hard to say much about the book without giving away some of the 40 plots. So... I will just say this...
Overall, a great book. The stories can be read during even the briefest gaps in your day, and even if you read it twice, you can finish it the same day you started it. Great 'quick and light' reading.
Random listing from 'Books'...
With seconds to spare, Cal escapes from the burning wreck of the Orca. Helicopters search from the sky, while Oriana's thugs chase on foot. There's no time to think about his dead great-uncle - Cal must dodge the cops and crims, and return to his pursuit of the Ormond Jewel.
Convinced Sligo has the Jewel, Cal embarks on a dangerous break-in mission to retrieve it. He hopes it will give him the answers he needs, but what if it reveals ... more...
All trademarks, images and copyrights on this site are owned by their respective companies.
KIWIreviews is an independent entity, part of the Knock Out News Group. This is a free public forum presenting user opinions on selected products, and as such the views expressed do not necessarily reflect the opinion of kiwireviews.nz and are protected under New Zealand law by the "Honest Opinion" clause of the Defamation Act of 1992. KIWIreviews accepts no liability for statements made on this site, on the premise that they have been submitted as the true and honest opinions of the individual posters. In most cases, prices and dates stated are approximate and should be considered as only guidelines.
"If corn oil is made from corn, and vegetable oil is made from vegetables, then what is baby oil made from?"