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Replay by Ken Grimwood
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Replay (original 1986; edition 1998)

by Ken Grimwood

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingConversations / Mentions
2,134933,067 (4.16)1 / 87
Member:tamarajp
Title:Replay
Authors:Ken Grimwood
Info:Harper Paperbacks (1998), Edition: later printing, Paperback, 320 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:***1/2
Tags:read for book club

Work details

Replay by Ken Grimwood (1986)

  1. 120
    Time and Again by Jack Finney (Kichererbse, browner56)
    browner56: Both of these are well-written stories that deal with the concept of time travel in an interesting way.
  2. 123
    The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger (hyper7, ahstrick)
  3. 70
    11/22/63 by Stephen King (SJaneDoe, dltj)
    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. 40
    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. 10
    A Shortcut in Time by Charles Dickinson (GirlMisanthrope)
  6. 32
    Doomsday Book by Connie Willis (Kichererbse)
  7. 10
    Rollback by Robert J. Sawyer (freelunch)
  8. 00
    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)
  9. 00
    The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde (sturlington)
  10. 00
    Flight by Sherman Alexie (PghDragonMan)
    PghDragonMan: Reincarnation to learn a Life Lesson joins these works
  11. 11
    Job: A Comedy of Justice by Robert A. Heinlein (Kichererbse)
  12. 00
    Regression by Kathy Bell (infiniteletters)
  13. 01
    The Post-Birthday World by Lionel Shriver (amysisson)
    amysisson: Another, very different examination on where our choices take us in life.
  14. 01
    Einstein's Dreams by Alan Lightman (Daimyo)
  15. 03
    The Book of Skulls by Robert Silverberg (ostgut)
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English (87)  French (4)  Japanese (1)  Catalan (1)  All languages (93)
Showing 1-5 of 87 (next | show all)
I enjoyed this bit of fantasy but I was expecting science fiction. There are some interesting plot points, and there is a ticking clock aspect that adds a bit of tension, but I found myself pushing on to get to the end. ( )
  joeydag | Jul 23, 2015 |
I didn't like how it was written. Apart from the interesting concept I found nothing more to keep me hooked.

The story progresses super slowly. I finished 25% of the book and it's still his life going on and he's only making money. Doesn't he have anything else to do? And if he has to name money why not explain that in a couple of lines instead of a hundred ones?

The writing felt needlessly bloated. I started reading only the first line in each paragraph because I was getting bored with the slow pace but really wanted to finish it because it sounded like a really good plot. But nopes! I couldn't continue it. Weird that this was to be a part of a book club and it's been so highly recommended.

Characters: It's only about the main character. the rest of them are one dimensional ppl only there with a few comments. you don't "feel" any character like what were they worrying about, what did they deeply desire etc. As for the main character he seems to have an OCD. you win so much money that you're done for life and yet you focusing on only that until 25% of the book is gone? that's a bad OCD! I wish I could just somehow ignore all this hype associated with books somehow and pick up something that I'll really enjoy. ( )
  MugenHere | Jul 12, 2015 |
Lose yourself in it. Forget the science and just enjoy the characters and their reactions. Two of us here read it and we did discuss it afterwords - and a book that both of us (with our divergent tastes) are intrigued to discuss is a good book!

Reread for the Time Travel group, Dec. 2014. My opinions stand. :) ( )
  Cheryl_in_CC_NV | Apr 14, 2015 |
This book is bad. The movie Groundhog Day had a similar premise, but condensed the replay to a twenty-four hour time period. Not only did this let Bill Murray have some very funny scenes where he played with the premise, it also allowed the film to delve into interesting questions like the ability of a man to change fate, not to mention the existential terror of being trapped in a repeating single day forever. Replay is about a guy reliving a huge chunk of his life, choosing various paths each time he gets sent back, and at the end of the day it is completely devoid of any sense of fun or terror. This premise should be entertaining; this book is not. If you want to read about a boring character learning the tired lessons of "maybe material wealth isn't everything" and "be happy with what you have" you can try it, but otherwise skip it, or rewatch Groundhog Day. ( )
  BayardUS | Dec 10, 2014 |
If you could do your life all over again, what would you do?
For Jeff Winston, that's not a hypothetical question.

Really solid scifi book.

As we go through this book, I really empathize with Jeff. Grimwood does a fantastic job writing about his emotions and his thought process. I find myself questioning what I would do in this scenario, and I feel like the confusion and attempts to gather information are spot on.

I love how he tries to adapt, but slips so many times. The anachronistic words (condo), the different styles of dance, etc.
The first time, we see intensity to do it right. But then with each repeat, we see more and more despair and confusion of what is going on.

It's interesting because in all of these books, the main characters always have a male and a female lead. But what would have happened if they were both male - or both female? The initial sexuality interest no longer binds them together (assuming they're not gay). There is still that depth and "no one else gets it" that connect them, but it's not "love" anymore. I feel like this would be an interesting idea to explore. Perhaps less interesting because there are consequently less avenues of relationship scenarios to discover, but it would be different.

The ending is perfect. Absolutely perfect.

4.5 stars rounded down. I docked half a star because this is a one-time read sort of book. It's interesting and brings up hypothetical thoughts, but I'm not particularly enraptured by it. Fantastic read though - so a very strong 4.5 stars. ( )
1 vote NineLarks | Sep 15, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 87 (next | show all)
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Epigraph
Dedication
For my mother and father
First words
Jeff Winston was on the phone with his wife when he died.
Quotations
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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Wikipedia in English (2)

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.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 068816112X, Paperback)

Jeff Winston, forty-three, didn't know he was a replayer until he died and woke up twenty-five years younger in his college dorm room; he lived another life. And died again. And lived again and died again -- in a continuous twenty-five-year cycle -- each time starting from scratch at the age of eighteen to reclaim lost loves, remedy past mistakes, or make a fortune in the stock market. A novel of gripping adventure, romance, and fascinating speculation on the nature of time, Replay asks the question: "What if you could live your life over again?"

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:24:44 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

Jeff Winston has many opportunities to relive his life until he gets it right.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 2 descriptions

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