Magazine
Latest Issue

Lives not led

Hard-headed and surprisingly right wing, Lionel Shriver does not fit the conventional image of a novelist. Her latest work is a subtle examination of the difficulties of decision-making.

The post-birthday world, by Lionel Shriver (HarperCollins, £11.99)

From time to time, all of us experience the sensation of our lives forking. A love affair comes to an end, or doesn’t quite. A life-changing job is accepted, or decided against. For a while afterwards, our days are ghosted by the other life that we might have led. Would it have been better than the one we have? (In our minds, inevitably, the answer is yes.) But the feeling doesn’t last. Our parallel self veers away, and our days resume their old course. Ultimately, this is for the best. If we…

Register today to continue reading

You’ve hit your limit of three articles in the last 30 days. To get seven more, simply enter your email address below.

You’ll also receive our free e-book Prospect’s Top Thinkers 2020 and our newsletter with the best new writing on politics, economics, literature and the arts.

Prospect may process your personal information for our legitimate business purposes, to provide you with newsletters, subscription offers and other relevant information.

Click here to learn more about these purposes and how we use your data. You will be able to opt-out of further contact on the next page and in all our communications.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to letters@prospect-magazine.co.uk

More From Prospect