From the author of Life After Life, one of the top selling adult books of 2014, which explored the possibility of infinite chances, as Ursula Todd lived through the turbulent events in the last century again and again. In A God in Ruins, Atkinson turns her focus on Ursula's beloved younger brother Teddy, a would-be-poet, RAF bomber pilot; husband and father- as he navigates the perils of the 20th Century. For all Teddy endures in battle, his greatest challenge will be to face living in a future he never expected to have. A God in Ruins is a masterful companion to Life After Life, and will prove once again that Kate Atkinson is one of the finest novelists of our age.
Life After Life was focused on Ursula Todd but A God in Ruins is concerned with Ursula's brother Teddy who was a bomber pilot during the war. In Lifer After Life Teddy dies but A God in Ruins explores what would have happened if he had survived the war. It is such an interesting idea and so, so thought-provoking. Kate Atkinson goes back and forth between Ted's past and present, particularly focusing on his time in the war. The things that Teddy saw and took part in have changed him forever and ways in those around him are not even aware of. As Teddy tries to back to normality, we follow as he marries, brings up a daughter and then deals with the reality of getting older. I fell in love with Teddy and felt so protective of him. I felt so angry towards members of Ted's family, especially his daughter Viola. They didn't seem to have a clue as to what he had endured during the war and it made me wander if they would hav
e had a different relationship with him had they known more.
The description of Teddy's missions were exemplary. The attention to detail and the way that Atkinson brought these situations to life was staggering. Some of the descriptions were quite upsetting but I think that they were very honest and necessary.
A God in Ruins explores so many different themes, as a reader you are given so much to think about. When I wasn't reading this book then I was constantly thinking about it and when I reached the final page I felt really sad as I didn't want to walk away from the characters; only a very special author can make you feel like that.
A God in Ruins is one of the best books I have read in 2015. Kate Atkinson has written a beautiful book that I know I will revisit again and again,