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A Tale of Time City by Diana Wynne Jones

A Tale of Time City (original 1987; edition 2012)

by Diana Wynne Jones, Ursula K. Le Guin (Introduction)

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1,055167,963 (3.84)1 / 38
Title:A Tale of Time City
Authors:Diana Wynne Jones
Other authors:Ursula K. Le Guin (Introduction)
Info:Firebird (2012), Edition: Reprint, Paperback, 352 pages
Collections:Read but unowned
Tags:Phyllis, First read

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A Tale of Time City by Diana Wynne Jones (Author) (1987)



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Showing 1-5 of 16 (next | show all)
I guess I'll have to add DWJ to my list of respected & popular authors that I am not simpatico with, including George RR Martin and Ursula K. LeGuin.  I cannot immerse myself in her complex worlds.
  Cheryl_in_CC_NV | Jun 5, 2016 |
In preparation for German bombing, children are evacuated from London. Vivian Smith is discontentedly waiting to be picked up by her unknown cousin Marty when an older boy commands her to follow him. Moments later, she finds herself in a strange plastic&metal room. Vivian has been kidnapped through time and space to Time City! Her kidnappers, Sam and Jonathan, are positive that she's the Time Lady who is destroying temporal reality and Time City itself. Vivian, of course, has no clue what they're talking about. All three embark upon an adventure to find the four time locks, hidden throughout time and fiercely guarded.

Adorable, with great details (the description of butter pie, a sweet that is icy on the outside, bubbling hot on the inside, and tastes like creamy butterscotchy vanilla perfection, was mouth-wateringingly memorable) and unforced characterization. Meant more for older children than young adults, but I sure enjoyed it anyway! ( )
  wealhtheowwylfing | Feb 29, 2016 |
In 1939, England, a young girl Vivian, is being evacuated from London
due to the onset of WWII (a seemingly common premise for a great deal
of British childrens' stories). However, she never makes it to her
destination, as she is kidnapped from a train platform. Her kidnappers
turn out to be two boys around her own age, Sam and Johnathan, who
have brought her to their home, Time City. Time City exists in a sort
of alternate time plane, and is collectively responsible for keeping
things 'on track.' However, things have been going wrong. Time is
slipping, and history is getting confused. Vivian's kidnapping was an
unauthorized bid for heroism by Johnathan and Sam, who were under the
impression that Vivian was a powerful and legendary figure, the Time
Lady. Vivian convinces them that she is, in fact, only an ordinary
girl, but finds herself caught up in the quest to repair the time
line, which involves finding a mysterious casket which could be hidden
almost any place - and any time.
Entertaining, but not among Jones' best works. ( )
  AltheaAnn | Feb 9, 2016 |
As usual, Diana Wynne Jones' imagination runs rampant, giving us a fun adventure with lots of amazing ideas packed in. I want to know what a butter pie tastes like, more than anything, but all of it was interesting and had me trying to puzzle it all out.

It wasn't surprising in any way, to me anyway, because it somehow seemed very typical of Diana Wynne Jones. But it was fun, and hooked me in well.

Not my favourite of her books so far, but that would be difficult to decide anyway... ( )
  shanaqui | Apr 9, 2013 |
Slight but entertaining time-travel tale from one of my favorite fantasy authors. The idea of sending Observers into the past and the worry about not changing things reminded me a little of Connie Willis, but the plot twists are all Diana Wynne Jones -- as is the invention of the butter-pie, something I wish existed in our universe! ( )
  bostonian71 | Mar 30, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 16 (next | show all)
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Jones, Diana WynneAuthorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bowers, DavidCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Smith, DuncanIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0064473511, Paperback)

Time City is built on a patch of time and space outside history. It is full of wonders and haunted by "time ghosts," but it is nearly worn out and doomed to destruction.

In September 1939, Vivian Smith is on a train, being evacuated from London, when she is kidnapped by two boys from Time City, Jonathan and Sam. They mistakenly think she is the mysterious Time Lady disguised as a child. Only the Time Lady can wake the founder of the city, Faber John, from his age-long sleep, and only he can save the city.

Vivian wants to get home; Jonathan and Sam want her to help them in their quest through the ages of history to save Time City. Meanwhile, someone seems to be tampering with history, changing it over and over, complicating everything. When Faber John is at last aroused, Time City's and Vivian's dilemmas are resolved in ways that are as satisfying as they are unexpected.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:08:34 -0400)

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In 1939 an eleven-year-old London girl is kidnapped to Time City, a place existing outside the stream of time and manipulating the history of humanity, where she finds the inhabitants facing their worst hour of crisis.

(summary from another edition)

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