The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August

  • by Claire North
  • Narrated by Peter Kenny
  • 12 hrs and 8 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

Harry August is on his deathbed. Again. No matter what he does or the decisions he makes, when death comes, Harry always returns to where he began, a child with all the knowledge of a life he has already lived a dozen times before. Nothing ever changes. Until now. As Harry nears the end of his eleventh life, a little girl appears at his bedside.
'I nearly missed you, Doctor August,' she says. 'I need to send a message.' This is the story of what Harry does next, and what he did before, and how he tries to save a past he cannot change and a future he cannot allow.

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What the Critics Say

"An astonishing re-invention of the time-travel narrative. Bold, magical and masterful" (M. R. Carey, author of The Girl With All the Gifts)"A thoughtful and considered time-travel novel, shocking twists and, most important of all, a beautiful character. Harry August will break your heart fifteen times" (Jared Shurin, Pornokitsch Blog)
This wonderful novel, narrated by Harry, ranges back and forth in time as he recounts episodes from his various lives, but it's all held together by a compelling mystery involving nothing less than the end of the world itself . . . Beautifully written and structured, the book should be a big hit . . . Fans of SF and fantasy authors China Mieville, Christopher Priest, and Adam Roberts might note a stylistic similarity, especially in the novel's elegant prose. Whoever Claire North turns out to be, he or she has written a remarkable book" (Booklist)
"Gripping" (Sun)
"A truly extraordinary novel: an impeccable portrait of a friendship tortured by time in which masterful character and fantastic narrative come together to tremendous effect" (TOR.COM)
"A brave, genre-defying novel, which is mind-blowing in its originality and bold concept . . . Stunning!" (NOVELICIOUS)
"Part unique and intriguing mystery, part philosophical look at life, memory and time travel this story kept me totally gripped from the opening words to the mind-blowing finale" (BITE THE BOOK)
"The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August is an extraordinary novel, as the publicity has promised" (The Speculative Scotsman)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Entertaining and clever.

Being a sucker for time-travel novels I did not hesitate to purchase this book on a whim around 15 seconds after hearing about its existence. I'm happy to report that I'm glad I did so. It's a first-rate story based around a simple yet intriguing premise.

Very well executed, the novel is finely plotted and excellently written. Initially, as in the best novels, things are a bit confusing, but as in the best stories this initial bewilderment is slowly unwound so that by the latter stages of the story all the elements are on hand for the "big finish".

As my usual fare is multi-volumed fantasy novels I found it refreshing to listen to a one-off story; personally I hope there are no sequels.

Peter Kenny, the narrator, does an excellent job, handling many different voices with dexterity and aplomb.

Of course there is also the over-arching mystery behind the mystery - just who is Claire North? A good marketing ploy, I've enjoyed the speculation and hope that the answer will be revealed in my life-time - make that my "current" life-time....
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- D. Menashy

A must read.

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

This book is a must read, i'm not sure what drew me to it but so glade. The story is a real change. Very clever.


What did you like best about this story?

The best part is it is so diffrent from other books, the ideas seem new. Normally I have worked out the twistes before they happen but this plot gave me the slip a few times.


What about Peter Kenny’s performance did you like?

Peter Kenny is a great reader. He does not over play the female parts. Each person is clearly differnt, well done.


Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

I did it in 2 sittings just could not turn it off, luckily i do a manual job so i have books on as i work.


Any additional comments?

Even if this is not your normal listern give it a go. i loved it.

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- April gingell

Book Details

  • Release Date: 08-04-2014
  • Publisher: Hachette Audio UK