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Therefore Choose Paperback – Apr 23 2010

5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 270 pages
  • Publisher: Goose Lane Editions (April 23 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0864926162
  • ISBN-13: 978-0864926166
  • Product Dimensions: 14 x 1.7 x 21.6 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 363 g
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,758,524 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description


"Of the many novels written about the Second World War, Oatley's stands out for its sensitivity and insight. Students of both history and psychology will find in Therefore Choose a fresh perspective on a well trod subject." — Malahat Review (2013-01-15)

"This well-written, intelligent, and even wise book deals with choice, specifically with the consequences of the choices that we make in life. It also shows the horror felt by those on both sides of the conflict that was the Second World War. The trauma is all here. So is the guilt, of both the victors and the defeated. Oatley is a good writer, and this is a fine book." — Shane Morgan, The Scene (2013-01-18)

"Unquestionably a literary triumph." — The Walrus (2013-01-18)

From the Inside Flap

"Life can only be understood backwards. That's what Kierkegaard said. The trouble is one has to live it forwards."

On a summer visit to Germany, George, a young medical student at Cambridge, meets Anna von Kleist, whose intellectual force, beauty, and self-assurance smite him full in the heart. It is 1936. Hitler is already in power, and a shift has occurred in Germany that Anna, George, and their friend Werner have not fully grasped. Europe is on the cusp of war when the three find themselves in a painful love triangle that plays between England and Germany.

A love story on a grand scale, Therefore Choose is set in a world where a single choice can affect the direction of a life, a country, or even a continent. Facing decisions that will forever alter the course of their lives, George, Anna, and Werner must choose and live with the irrevocable consequences.

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
This is a powerful, profound, complex novel, magisterial in ambition, magisterial in accomplishment. It treat some of the most significant events of recent human history, the before, during, and after of the Second World War (territory many of the best writers have shunned) and is still able to add much to what we know and feel about those events. More than that, it's a novel of ideas that's also a page turner. Time and again you pause to contemplate a thoughtful passage, only to quickly continue reading because the narrative pace calls too urgently to stay away for long. The scope: in time, roughly a decade; in space, a vivid firm sense of location, whether Cambridge, London, Berlin, Geneva, or .... the notorious Bergen Belsen Nazi concentration camp (the author movingly uses the words of his father, a British soldier present at the camp's liberation, in the horrific description of the place). And though the book is essentially idea driven, it introduces three memorable characters created in the round -- they resonate, they cohere. A literary and historical journey that lodges feelings and thoughts in your mind it is difficult to dislodge.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0x9c116e10) out of 5 stars 3 reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9b9dbee8) out of 5 stars Therefore choose to think in great company Aug. 21 2010
By L. Larocque - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I started this novel the way I do many works of fiction - prepared to dive into a good, well-told, satisfying tale. A few chapters into it, I realized I had embarked upon a philosophical tour de force. Great thinkers were appearing to tease and waken the reader to the complexities of of making choices, whether in love, career, moral responsibility, or war as Hitler's own choices begin to reveal themselves. Starting anew, I carefully read each succintly written chapter of this existential novel which quietly interleaves philosophy, psychology and aesthetics through a story of love and war. George and Werner, close friends at Cambridge, and Anna, a strong-willed intellectual friend and lover in Germany, take their love of ideas and pursuits of truth to disturbingly different places. Breath-taking in erudition and scope, this work, written by a cognitive psychologist and novelist, prompts the reader to grapple with what informs our choices and how these choices make us who we are.
HASH(0x9ba4200c) out of 5 stars Peu excitant July 13 2012
By Eva Welsh - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition
J'ai trouvé l'histoire un peu intéressante mais il manquait vraiment de piquant. De plus, le livre était très ennuyant pas moment. Je ne le recommenderais pas à quelqu'un. L'idée était tellement bonne pourtant, domage qu'elle n'a pas été exploité à son pleins potentiel. George était un personnage qu'on ne pouvait à peine se sentir rapproché de lui. Ses émotions semblait extrèmement fausse. Bref, au moins j'ai été en mesure d'emprunter le lire au lieu de l'acheter.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x9b8722e8) out of 5 stars attachments and choices April 30 2010
By alison fleming - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
I enjoyed this book immensely. It is written in a very careful, succinct, and
thoughtful prose, with a lot of intelligence. It draws the reader in and holds
her/him there, until the end-which was unexpected and very moving.