A Brief History of Living Forever has an electric start, but after about 80 pages I wanted to slide it under a pile of magazines ... Kalfar’s dystopia feels thirdhand. Happily, he has other things to work with ... He has a Kurt Vonnegut-like satirical touch, at his best, as well as Vonnegut’s interest in science. He also has an old-world melancholy, beneath the humor ... The rest of the novel combines flashbacks to Adela’s past... with scenes of her two children trying to rescue her body from a black-ops warehouse in Florida, in order to give it a proper burial. There are bad guys with guns, and suddenly we’re in a Jason Statham movie. Kalfar’s wit has burned off entirely.
With piercing insights into human nature and the way we live now, Kalfar paints a compelling and convincing portrait of a near future rife with dangerous nationalism and perilous technological advances.