Saturday, August 8, 2009

Book Review: The TIme Traveler's Wife

This is the first real novel I've read since Henry's illness began. Lately my knitting has waned, my concentration is improved and I feel like losing myself in a story is a more thorough escape from my mind's uncomfortable wanderings. I picked it up on the recommendation of a friend, who mentioned it because he was sure he'd be disappointed with the movie. I actually think it might translate very well.

The Time Traveler's Wife is written from the two perspectives of a couple in love, but tossed around by fate and time in ways that the rest of us aren't. It's well written, has some clever dialogue, and makes your mind stretch a bit to follow what's happening.

It's a love story, first and foremost, but there's also a lot in there about loss. How are death and loss different if you have access to time travel? Quite a bit. Henry (the protagonist) lost his mother when he was a child, but as an adult is able to experience her again. Henry's father was devastated by the loss of his wife, but finds her existence to Henry, albeit in a different and for him inaccessible dimension, comforting.

I do as well, thinking of my own Henry. My poor little brain isn't very adept at quantum physics, but I believe enough in the brains of others to trust in what they are saying. Sometimes I make the analogy in my head about time that we used to have about space. Hundreds of years ago, when someone made the trip from Europe to the Americas, families knew they would never seen each other again, never again occupy the same physical space. Henry and I will never again occupy the same time space, but in "sometime" he still is.


SOCKS said...

I saw the book title on your night stand and was looking forward to your review.

It sounds a little confusing to me but intriguing enough to read.

As time passes and experiences are new, Henry's time with us becomes so distant - but missing him is so "now".

rlbates said...

I love the thought of time travel. Wonder what it would be like to actually get to go back or forward in time. Always fall for shows/books that can make it believable. Will have to read this one sometime.

Jen said...

That's one of my favourite books- from seeing the first 2 trailers, it looks possible that they've done a decent job of making it into a movie.

radioactive girl said...

I have been wanting to read this book for a while now. I think I need to actually read it instead of thinking about reading it!

I love your way of thinking about it all.

Snickollet said...

I really disliked this book, but your review made me rethink things.

Kathy said...

I listened to the audiobook, and it's an absolutely wonderful rendition, beautifully read.

Audiobooks are what I listen to when I don't like the voices in my own head.

Bless you Dr. Smak, I wish for you to find your way in a world without Henry.

Anonymous said...

I have a book recommendation if you would like a novel that is absorbing and well written. I just finished "Lush Life." I mostly read non-fiction but the world has been "too much with" me lately and I bought it as a way of escaping my world for a bit. It's set in current times, on the Lower East Side of New York. Nothing like where I live or the issues I face, so it allowed me to step outside of my world.

A book I recommend you DON'T waste any hours reading is "South of Broad." The writing is just awful and the story a melodramatic and violent mess.

Unrelated, but thank you for mentioning your atheism here on your blog. As an atheist living in the conservative South, I am pretty careful who I tell as it might hurt my career opportunities. I like reading the blogs of other free thinkers.

Taking Heart said...

I have been wanting to read this...thanks for the review.

Movie Theater said...

I still prefer the novel than to watch this movie. But I did because of my curiosity! Thumbs Up for this movie!