Not what I expected

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The Immortalists by Chloe Benjamin is four individual stories. They are linked by the fact that each story is about a different sibling from the same family, with the common thread that weaves the stories together being an early childhood trip to a fortune teller who predicted the dates that each of them would die. I don’t want to give any spoilers, and the suspense of wanting to find out what happens to each of them is what kept me turning the pages.

I will say that I felt there were a lot of relationships, themes and events that were introduced and then not really followed through on which left me feeling frustrated. I feel like each one of the stories could have been fleshed out into independent books to provide a lot more depth and character development. I wanted to know more about the grandmother, the FBI agent, the family of gypsies. They were all introduced as being significant, but then not really developed further.

The book has such a strong sense of loss throughout that it was fairly depressing overall, and I don’t know that I can say I really ‘enjoyed’ it — but a week later I am still thinking about the four stories, the characters and trying to find ways to tie up loose ends in my own mind. So I guess what I’m trying to say is that even though I didn’t feel like I loved the book, it has certainly stayed with me.