Sunday, January 28, 2018

The Immortalists

Four curious siblings growing up in NYC’s Lower East Side in the early 1970’s go to see a fortune teller they heard about in the neighborhood. Apparently she can tell you the date you are going to die. Thinking it a little scary and equally silly, the troop trudges up many flights of steps to the woman’s apartment where she is more than a little creepy. They never tell a word about it to anyone. They never discuss the dates whispered in their little ears. Each trajectory takes them in another direction. Simon drops out of high school to follow Klara to the west coast where she dreams of life as a professional magician. Varya throws herself into her passion for scientific gene studies and Daniel goes to medical school, as expected. But their lives and dreams (and happiness) follow a most complicated path.  When tragedy begins to strike the siblings one by one, they cannot deny that their date prophecies have followed them around their entire lives. This beautifully written, kind of weird, definitely unique - novel of complicated sibling relationships really boils down to one premise. Is fate a real thing or do we create our own destiny? And if you knew when you were going to die, would you live your life differently? I guess that’s two.

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