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The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey…

The Time Traveler's Wife (2003)

by Audrey Niffenegger

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
32,575112823 (4.12)1104
  1. 215
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    My Name Is Memory by Ann Brashares (distractedmusician)
    distractedmusician: Love that transcends the limits of time.
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    Life After Life by Kate Atkinson (BookshelfMonstrosity)
    BookshelfMonstrosity: These moving and thought-provoking novels portray characters whose lives are continually disrupted by time shifts -- in Life after Life, the protagonist repeatedly dies and comes back to life, while in The Time Traveler's Wife, the protagonist time-travels involuntarily.… (more)
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    emr093: If you are interested in various concepts of time, other than linear.
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    elbakerone: Another romantic time travel story with roots in Chicago.
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    amz310783: Both have time travel in them, but not in an obvious sci-fi way. Also both have love stories
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(see all 35 recommendations)

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» See also 1104 mentions

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Showing 1-5 of 1089 (next | show all)
This book was beyond amazing! To track so many parallel worlds without losing the reader and the ability to draw you into each one and delve so deeply into each character simply amazed me. A book about love, time travel, soul mates destined to be together, family and endurance. Of finding a glimmer of hope for oneself and one's loved ones. For carrying on despite everything. ( )
  lwillis1 | Apr 17, 2017 |
For a long time I hated this book on principle and didn't want to read it. Aside from having very little interest in romance, I disliked the "____'s wife/daughter" trend for always placing women second and in a strict role (and accuse this book of perpetuating that titling trend), and I hated that it was successful because I always hate when there are successful books I don't think merit it. But I hadn't read it. And for a long time I thought I never would, and thought I had a sense of it, but then I was also aware of people I know who appreciated it a lot, and it seemed to endure through the past 15 years, still frequently assigned to book clubs, and I thought I'd see what all the fuss was about. And after starting my year with the indulgent [book:Mariana|961833], I thought why not another romance? Why not something with a strong sense of story to unwind with after a day of work?

I read it over the course of a week and it was interesting and it knew what it was about, but I cared so little for Clare or Henry. And it's odd, because I am a nearly 28-year-old punk librarian person, and the musical references were all good and the book references were all great, but it was sort of terrible because every time they'd mention Blake or Rilke or whoever I'd just wish I was reading that instead of this. Niffenegger even title-drops my heartsong, [book:À rebours|1312641], but talking about better works isn't the way to a great book.

I think the plot works well to sustain a story of romance, because the big catch 22 of writing romances is that you can't just have the couple together all the time, there has to be conflict. For a resolution/unification to be successful, there has to be separation. It's why romances cut off when the couple gets together, because we the separation is what makes the reunion so cathartic. We're interested in attaining the happiness, but not in watching it play out for hundreds of pages more. However I'll credit Niffenegger that the temporal disconnect manages to sustain that much-needed separation and make a relationship between two people fodder enough for an entire novel.

I'm on the fence over whether to give [book:Her Fearful Symmetry|6202342] a try, which goes to show I didn't find this quite a hopeless case. ( )
1 vote likecymbeline | Apr 1, 2017 |
Great book. Funny - sad - heartwarming - all around a great book.

Very interesting concept of time traveling person. The reader gets his perspective as well as his wife's.

About love - sacrifices - hardships - family -friends - getting left behind - waiting - patience. ( )
  BooksForTheLiving | Mar 20, 2017 |
I enjoyed it. It switched narrator depending on the point of view. Because I listened to this on a play away I couldn't see how much time was left, so I kept thinking it must be almost done, but it would keep going.
  nx74defiant | Mar 2, 2017 |
The Time Traveller's Wife came out at a time when I was listening to more books than reading them, and the only version available on Audible was the abridged version. Since I couldn't imagine only reading part of a book, I decided to wait. My chance finally came last year when I received the book in a Bookish Secret Santa exchange (through Reddit). So, I decided to read it last summer as the 'book over 500 pages' in a book bingo I was doing, but I didn't get to it before the time ran out... so this year, I made it one of the first books I read!

I could not stop reading it. The non-liniar time line of the chapters, the shifting point of view, the fascinating rules of how time travel works all made the book impossible to put down. I loved how the characters evolved through the concepts of fate and free will and chance; very groundless. I was captivated by the tiny twists and turns in the plot, and the (mostly) subtle foreshadowing. I didn't want it to end!

Until the end. I wanted the unrequited sentiment to continue, rather than be tied up so neatly.

I would give the book 3.5 stars if I could; awesome, but a little anticlimactic. ( )
  Liosa | Feb 9, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 1089 (next | show all)
Um, I don't say this very often but I could NOT finish this book. I originally chose it as my 'April Book of the Month' because I was challenged to read a book that has been sitting on my 'to-read' list for WAY TOO LONG and also one that I had tried to read before but didn't get through. Feeling like I hadn't given this book a fair chance, it seemed like a no-brainer choice. However... it just isn't a book for me. I made it MUCH further than I have in the past (approx. 200 pages) but the fact that I am not 'craving' the read that I normally do, I know that I am done. This book will be entered into the vault, never to be seen again (at least by these eyes).

I'm sad to add a book to the 'couldn't finish' list, but... life is too short to read something I am not enjoying!!
The triumph of the book is the triumph of normality, of setting up a decent family life even if you are constantly dissappearing from it, of being loyal to somebody with what Niffenegger finally explains as a genetic dysfunction - chrono-displacement, as she calls it.
added by mikeg2 | editThe guardian, Natasha Walter (Jan 31, 2004)
"The Time Traveler's Wife" can be an exasperating read, but as a love story it has its appeal: Refreshingly, the novel portrays long-term commitment as something lively and exuberant rather than dutiful and staid, evoking both the comforts it brings us and the tribulations we learn to live with.
Niffenegger, despite her moving, razor-edged prose, doesn't claim to be a romantic. She writes with the unflinching yet detached clarity of a war correspondent standing at the sidelines of an unfolding battle. She possesses a historian's eye for contextual detail. This is no romantic idyll.
added by Shortride | editUSA Today, Kathy Balog (Sep 24, 2003)
About halfway through Audrey Niffenegger's debut novel, The Time Traveler's Wife, you realize you're going to be devastated. You love the characters, you're deeply involved in their lives, you can sense tragedy coming and you know it's going to hurt. But there's no way you can stop reading... Niffenegger structures the novel clearly enough that the timelines never get tangled, and her writing is so strong you'd keep going even if you did get confused.
added by Shortride | editBookPage, Becky Ohlsen (Sep 1, 2003)

» Add other authors (22 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Audrey Niffeneggerprimary authorall editionscalculated
Hope, WilliamNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lefkow, LaurelNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Swahn, Sven ChristerTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Clock time is our bank manager,
tax collector, police inspector;
this inner time is our wife.

Man and Time
Love After Love

The time will come
when, with elation,
you will greet yourself arriving
at your own door, in your own mirror,
and each will smile at the other's welcome,

and say, sit here. Eat.
You will love again the stranger who was your self.
Give wine. Give bread. Give back your heart
to itself, to the stranger who has loved you

all your life, whom you ignored
for another, who knows you by heart.
Take down the love letters from the bookshelf,

the photographs, the desperate notes
peel your own image from the mirror.
Sit. Feast on your life.

Oh not because happiness exists,
that too-hasty profit snatched from approaching loss.
But because truly being here is so much; because everything here apparently needs us, this fleeting world, in which some strange way keeps calling us. Us, the most fleeting of all.
. . . Ah, but what can we take along
into that other real? Not the art of looking,
which is learned so slowly, and nothing that happened here. Nothing.
The sufferings, then. And, above all, the heaviness,
and the long experience of love,—just what is wholly

—from The Ninth Duino Elegy, RAINER MARIA RILKE,
translated by STEPHEN MITCHELL

Elizabeth Hillman Tamandl
May 20, 1915-December 18, 1986


Norbert Charles Tamandl
February 11, 1915-May 23, 1957
First words

It's hard being left behind.
Saturday, October 26, 1991 (Henry is 28, Clare is 20)

Clare: The library is cool and smells like carpet cleaner, although all I can see is marble.
Henry: I didn't know you were coming or I'd have cleaned up a little more. My life, I mean, not just the apartment.
I imagined my mother laughing at me, her well-plucked eyebrows raised high at the sight of her half-Jewish son marooned in the midst of Christmas in Goyland.
Last words
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
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Wikipedia in English (3)

Book description
The Time Traveler's Wife is an unconventional love story that centers on a man with a strange genetic disorder that causes him to unpredictably time travel, and his wife, an artist who has to cope with his frequent absences and dangerous experiences.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 015602943X, Paperback)

A dazzling novel in the most untraditional fashion, this is the remarkable story of Henry DeTamble, a dashing, adventuresome librarian who travels involuntarily through time, and Clare Abshire, an artist whose life takes a natural sequential course. Henry and Clare's passionate love affair endures across a sea of time and captures the two lovers in an impossibly romantic trap, and it is Audrey Niffenegger's cinematic storytelling that makes the novel's unconventional chronology so vibrantly triumphant.

An enchanting debut and a spellbinding tale of fate and belief in the bonds of love, The Time Traveler's Wife is destined to captivate readers for years to come.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:24:46 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

A dazzling novel in the most untraditional fashion, this is the remarkable story of Henry DeTamble, a dashing, adventuresome librarian who travels involuntarily through time, and Clare Abshire, an artist whose life takes a natural sequential course. Henry and Clare's passionate love affair endures across a sea of time and captures the two lovers in an impossibly romantic trap, and it is Audrey Niffenegger's cinematic storytelling that makes the novel's unconventional chronology so vibrantly triumphant. An enchanting debut and a spellbinding tale of fate and belief in the bonds of love, The Time Traveler's Wife is destined to captivate readers for years to come.… (more)

» see all 14 descriptions

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10 editions of this book were published by Audible.com.

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2 editions of this book were published by HighBridge.

Editions: 1598872028, 1598877372

HighBridge Audio

2 editions of this book were published by HighBridge Audio.

Editions: 161174430X, 1622319095

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