New from Simon & Schuster

A Sudden Light by Garth Stein
The King's Curse by Philippa Gregory
Rebel Yell by S. C. Gwynne
Angels Walking by Karen Kingsbury
The Short and Tragic Life of Robert Peace by Jeff Hobbs
You Can't Make This Stuff Up by Theresa Caputo
The Book of Immortality

The Book of Immortality

The Science, Belief, and Magic Behind Living Forever

What have we not done to live forever? Adam Leith Gollner, the critically acclaimed author of The Fruit Hunters, weaves together religion, science, and mythology in a gripping exploration of the most universal of human obsessions: immortality.

Raised without religion, Adam Leith Gollner was struck by mankind’s tireless efforts to cheat aging and death. In a narrative that pivots between profundity and hilarity, he brings us into the world of those whose lives are shaped by a belief in immortality. From a Jesuit priest on his deathbed to antiaging researchers at Harvard, Gollner— sorting truth from absurdity—canvasses religion and science for insight, along with an array of cults, myths, and fringe figures.

He journeys to David Copperfield’s archipelago in the Bahamas, where the magician claims to have found “a liquid that reverses genes.” He explores a cryonics facility, attends a costume party set in the year 2068 with a group of radical life-extensionists, and soaks in the transformative mineral waters at the Esalen Institute. Looking to history, Gollner visits St. Augustine, Florida, where Ponce de León is thought to have sought the Fountain of Youth.

Combining immersive reporting, rigorous research, and lyrical prose, Gollner charts the rise of longevity science from its alchemical beginnings to modern-day genetic interventions. He delves into the symbolic representation of eternal life and its connection to water. Interlaced throughout is a compelling meditation on the nature of belief, showing how every story we tell about immortality is a story about the meaning of death.

“Part journalist, part detective, part scientist.” (New York Post). Adam Leith Gollner has written a rollicking and revelatory examination of our age-old notion of living forever.
Choose a format:
  • Scribner | 
  • 416 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781439109434 | 
  • September 2014
Pre Order
List Price $16.00
Ships on or around September 30, 2014

Read an Excerpt

Book of Immortality Introduction The Nature of Immortality


It is apparent that there is no death.

But what does that signify?

—Edna St. Vincent Millay, “Spring”

Because they believed in nothing, they were ready to believe anything.

—Lucian Boia, Forever Young

IMMORTALITY DOESN’T ACTUALLY EXIST. It’s not something tangible we can point to, see, or demonstrate. It resides in... see more

About the Author

Adam Leith Gollner
Photo Credit:

Adam Leith Gollner

Adam Leith Gollner has written for The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, the Guardian, the Globe and Mail, and Lucky Peach. The former editor of Vice Magazine, his first book is The Fruit Hunters. He lives in Montreal.

BECOME A FAN

Explore

CONNECT WITH US

Get a FREE eBook
when you join our mailing list!