Monday, December 24, 2012

The Time Traveler's Wife

Title: The Time Traveler's Wife
Author: Audrey Niffenegger
Genre: Science fiction / Romance
Published: 2003
Rating: 8/10

I picked up The Time Traveler's Wife at a second-hand book sale for a couple dollars as an after-thought. I've heard of the book before, but didn't know much about it -- I just wanted to avoid getting change from my five dollar bill.

It sat on my bookshelf until the day before yesterday when I decided I needed to read something by an author whom I haven't yet read to help along my 2012 resolution of reading new authors.

This is a rather hefty tome, though mostly due to the thick paper and large print. About 500 pages later, I am done I have to say I enjoyed every page of it. The story is told in first person POV by the two main characters Henry DeTamble and Clare Abshire. He is born with a genetic disorder that causes him to involuntarily time travel backwards and forwards in time. She meets him at first as a little girl during his travels to the past and then again once she is grown.

The entire book tells the story of their relationship and time together. It's not an action-packed affair, but rather a slow revelation of their time together. At times it's too melodramatic and at times it seems unrealistically perfect, but most of the time I felt drawn into the book and feeling the story flow, enjoying the character expositions and just wanting more.

The genetic explanation for Henry's travel in the book was interesting -- however, I am not sure I like the deterministic outlook of the author on time travel. The book tries to convince that nothing you do in the past would change the future, but I felt that in character's shoes I would try a little harder to disprove that theory. Attempt to make a difference. The deterministic aspect of the book just felt a bit too fatalistic to me -- though I am guessing it made keeping internal consistency of the world much easier for the author.

Altogether, it was a really fast read that I absolutely enjoyed despite the fact that this is probably not the book that'll change your life. Merry Christmas!

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