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Replay by Ken Grimwood

Replay (1986)

by Ken Grimwood

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
2,6361123,518 (4.16)1 / 111
In 1988, Jeff Winston dies of a heart attack only to wake up at Emory University in 1963, now only eighteen. Much seems the same, but the only difference is he remembers what happened during his life and what the future holds. He's not sure how this happened, if it will happen again, or what to do with the lifetime of knowledge he has acquired.… (more)
  1. 120
    Time and Again by Jack Finney (Kichererbse, browner56, sturlington)
    browner56: Both of these are well-written stories that deal with the concept of time travel in an interesting way.
  2. 132
    The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger (hyper7, ahstrick, HoudeRat)
  3. 100
    11/22/63 by Stephen King (SJaneDoe, dltj, HoudeRat)
    dltj: Shares a similar plot line that covers part of the same time period, and "Replay" even includes a story fragment about November 22, 1963.
  4. 60
    The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August by Claire North (Alirob, BeckyJG)
    BeckyJG: A protagonist who lives his life over and over, remembering the entirety of it each time, with the opportunity to do things differently, as well.
  5. 30
    Life After Life by Kate Atkinson (BookshelfMonstrosity)
    BookshelfMonstrosity: Life after Life and Replay feature characters who live multiple lives against their wills; the complications of dying and coming back to life form the core of each novel and create moving, sometimes funny, always thought-provoking situations.… (more)
  6. 42
    Doomsday Book by Connie Willis (Kichererbse)
  7. 10
    Rollback by Robert J. Sawyer (freelunch)
  8. 10
    A Shortcut in Time by Charles Dickinson (GirlMisanthrope)
  9. 00
    Regression by Kathy Bell (infiniteletters)
  10. 11
    The Post-Birthday World by Lionel Shriver (amysisson)
    amysisson: Another, very different examination on where our choices take us in life.
  11. 00
    Flight by Sherman Alexie (PghDragonMan)
    PghDragonMan: Reincarnation to learn a Life Lesson joins these works
  12. 12
    Job: A Comedy of Justice by Robert A. Heinlein (Kichererbse)
  13. 01
    Einstein's Dreams by Alan Lightman (Daimyo)
  14. 03
    The Book of Skulls by Robert Silverberg (ostgut)

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English (106)  French (4)  Japanese (1)  Catalan (1)  All languages (112)
Showing 1-5 of 106 (next | show all)
In this fantasy adventure, Jeff Winston, a 43-year-old journalist, dies and wakes up in his 18-year-old body. He finds himself trapped in 1963 with his memories 25 years into the future still there. He falls in love with Pamela, will die around the same time as Jeff; they try to warn the world of disasters and Replayers, who are basically serial Killers. This story is sort of a combination of Freaky Friday, Terminator, and Back to the Future. It is a fast paced romance adventure, which should work well with young adults. ( )
  JB_Chad | Jul 17, 2019 |
Great plot but the writing was a bit uneven - every now and then a wooden sentence or overly contrived scene broke the spell for me. A few interesting plot threads were either dropped or barely followed up and some important events or artifacts didn't get the full description they deserved. But it's a quick read, so the strengths outweighed the weaknesses for me. ( )
  badube | Mar 6, 2019 |
Extremely well done story about someone having to relive a portion of his life multiple time. Not really a time travel story, more a study of humanity. Big recommendation! ( )
  Guide2 | Oct 14, 2018 |
Set 1963-1988. Jeff Winston dies in 1988 at age 43, and wakes up at age 18 in 1963 with full knowledge of his previous life – over and over.

This written by a man, from man’s perspective, and for men. The sexual exploits were a little – what? Over the top? One-sided? Too much a confirmation of Jeff’s masculinity?

Because of a “skew” that set the beginning of the replay forward each time, Jeff was eventually able to live past 1988 (still with the memories of his replays) into new & unknown waters.

Pretty classic time-travel stuff. ( )
  ParadisePorch | Oct 4, 2018 |
Jeff Winston, 43 years old, dies suddenly of a heart attack, in October 1988.

Then he wakes up, in 1963, eighteen years old and a freshman in college.

With all his memories of his previous life intact.

He's got it all to do over again, except that this time he can do it right. He can amass all the wealth, fame, and success he missed out on the first time around.

But his death happens again, on the same date, and he has a third chance. And a fourth. What's going on? Why is this happening? And is Jeff all alone, or are there others like him?

New readers of Replay are likely to think of the 1993 Bill Murray movie, Groundhog Day, but Replay precedes it by almost a decade, and Jeff Winston has to relive more than just one day, with far bigger lessons to learn than how not to be a jerk.

Over the course of the repeating cycle of the last twenty-five years of his life, Jeff explores the limits of how much control we really have of our lives and of events around us. Can he change major historical events he knows are coming? Can he build a better relationship with his wife--or a worse one? Does he need to marry the same woman at all?

It's a fascinating exploration of free will, destiny, and how to build meaning in your life.

Highly recommended.

I bought this audiobook. ( )
  LisCarey | Sep 19, 2018 |
Showing 1-5 of 106 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (9 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Ken Grimwoodprimary authorall editionscalculated
Dufris, WilliamNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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For my mother and father
First words
Jeff Winston was on the phone with his wife when he died.
The future: hideous plagues, a revolution in sexual attitudes achieved and then reversed, triumph and tragedy in space, city streets haunted by null-eyed punks in leather and chains and spiked pink hair, death-beams in orbit around the polluted, choking earth...Christ, Jeff thought with a shudder, from this viewpoint his world sounded like the most nightmarish of science fiction.
"Chateaugay, at eleven-to-one odds.
He sold the Chevy, his books, stereo, and record collection....
...Now he had to place a bet, a large one. But how?"
All life includes loss. It's taken me many, many years to learn to deal with that, and I don't expect I'll ever be fully resigned to it. But that doesn't mean we have to turn away from the world, or stop striving for the best that we can do and be. We owe that much to ourselves, at least, and we deserve whatever measure of good may come of it.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Rowland Damaris is NOT the author of Replay, Ken Grimwood is.
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Book description
Replay is the account of 43-year-old radio journalist Jeff Winston, who dies of a heart attack in 1988 and awakens back in 1963 in his 18-year-old body as a student at Atlanta's Emory University. He then begins to relive his life with intact memories of the next 25 years, until, despite his best efforts at cardiac health, he dies of a heart attack, again, in 1988. He immediately returns to 1963, but several hours later than the last "replay". This happens repeatedly with different events in each cycle, each time beginning from increasingly later dates (first days, then weeks, then years, then ultimately decades). Jeff soon realizes that he cannot prevent his death in 1988, but he can change the events that occur before it, both for him, and for others.
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