Life after Life by Kate Atkinson – Audiobook Review

Life after Life by Kate Atkinson, narrated by Fenella Woolgar
Published in audio by Hachette Audio, published in print by Reagan Arthur Books, an imprint of Hachette

I have previously reviewed Life after Life in print, but in case you need a refresher, here’s the synopsis I wrote:

It is 1910 and one of the snowiest nights in memory in England when Ursula Todd is born. Unfortunately, little Ursula is not long for this world, dying almost before her mother even realizes she has been born. Luckily for Ursula, she is born again, the same day to the same family, and this time with another result. So Ursula is born time and time again, as she succumbs to the perils of early 20th-cenutry life but is repeatedly granted another chance, as if her life is building towards some grand purpose.

When I first finished Life after Life I had pretty daydreams about how much I had loved it and hoped against hope that my editor at Audiofile Magazine would assign me the audio to review (SPOILER ALERT: she did). As the weeks passed after reading it, though, I began to grow worried about the audiobook. Life after Life is huge, and has the tendency to loop back in on itself. Turns out I shouldn’t have worried. I don’t know if it was Fenella Woolgar’s narration, the production as a whole, or the source material, but Life after Life actually translated to audio quite well. Of course, I did have the benefit of already having read it once, but that was at least two months before I listened to the audio, so while I’m sure it smoothed the way, I did not necessarily remember all the intricacies of the plot.

I do think a listener who had no idea what the book was about might still be hugely confused the first time Ursula dies and the whole thing starts again, but as long as you have the basic premise you’d might as well spend 15 hours listening to Fenella Woolgar’s lovely narration – particularly her smashingly good American, French, and German accents.

For more, please see my review for Audiofile Magazine

Buy this book from:
Powells: Audio/Print*
Indiebound: Audio/Print*

Source: Audiofile Magazine.
* These links are all affiliate links. If you buy your book here I’ll make a very small amount of money that goes towards hosting, giveaways, etc.

Sound Bytes is a meme that occurs every Friday! I encourage you to review your audiobooks on Fridays and include the link here. If you have reviewed an audiobook earlier in the week, please feel free to link that review as well. Thanks to Pam for creating the button.



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9 comments to Life after Life by Kate Atkinson – Audiobook Review

  • I ended up picking this up in audio because I knew I’d get to it faster that way. I’ve got a print back up copy just in case. I’m looking forward to this one.

  • Somehow, I never get audiobooks. I just don’t like them at all! Life After Life is such a great book that I’d never think of changing it for an audiobook. Plus, the structure is an artwork in itself and that can be more appreciated in print form!

  • I’ve been seeing this around the blogs a lot…it does sound very intriguing.

  • I’m on the library hold list (which is ridiculously long) for a print copy, but am now wondering why I never considered audio! Off to check that list…

  • So this is great in print and on audio…all signs that I should read it!

  • I’ve got this one in print, I’m hearing such great reviews, must get to soon. Thanks as always for allowing me to link up my own audiobook reviews.
    Have a wonderful weekend!!

  • Bob

    I’m actually really tempted to listen to this, the description reminds me a little of Replay by Ken Grimwood, which is one of my all time favorite novels.

  • I’ve always read Kate Atkinson’s books in print, so will probably stick with that for this one. I have almost as big a backlog of audio to listen to as print books to read!

  • I don’t listen to a lot of audio books, but I may check this one out in paper!