What is you favorite Time-Travel book?
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There are a few good ones, a couple great ones.
But the best, hands-down, Time-Travel book I've ever read in my life is Replay by Ken Grimwood.
It's one of the best books (any genre) I've ever read. Period.
Highly recommended, a must-read.
What's the best Time-Travel book you've read?
Other favourites include H. G. Wells, (of course) who was born in Bromley (as was I hence my comment above), Gregory Benford, specifically Timescape and the Mythago Wood series by Robert Holdstock.
slothman, I agree that Connie Willis and Tim Powers have written great time travel books. I also like Dave Duncan's trilogy called the Great Game. John Wyndham wrote a book of short stories called the Seeds of Time which introduced me to the genre many years ago.
I loved the Simsons episode where Homer accidentally transforms the toaster into a time travel machine. He travels back to pre-historic times, and his various antics like squashing bugs, or giving a cold to the dinosaurs, change history. One alternate future has Flanders as the ruler of the planet in an Orwellian nightmare. Hilarious.
I heartily agree about it.
One of my all-time favorite books, of any kind!
Connie Willis handles time travel wonderfully in both To Say Nothing of the Dog and The Doomsday Book. The first book is a lot of fun and plays around with the concept of time travel nicely, the second is more thought-provoking and, in the sections dealing with the Plague, horrifying.
Time travel sets the saga in motion and from time to time re-enters to either complicate or help the story along.
They are probably my favorite of those books which feature time travel.
Recently read Peter Delacorte's book Time on My Hands and was smitten. Of course, I loved the premise...a time traveler sent back to the 1930s to...er...preemptively redress a political wrong, let's say, and who falls in love with a doomed woman while there. He spends the rest of the book trying to make time behave itself, ie give him what he wants. Recommended, especially to pisces4256.
I passionately love the Sidewise Award-winning novel The Severed Wing by Martin Gidron. Its beautifully imagined world of a Yiddish New York in the year 2000 left me wanting more stories set there.
As an aside, the Sidewise Award-winning works are listed at http://www.uchronia.com/ and the list is worth a perusal. The site is among my very favorite places to visit, especially as its "What's New" section keeps me abreast of lots of the new publications in alternate history.
But hands-down my favorite alternate history/time travel book is Lord Kalvan of Otherwhen by H. Beam Piper. My dad read the book to me as our go-to-sleep book in 1966. I was enthralled, transported, completely swooningly in love with the story! Doesn't hold up as well as The Warlord of the Air to re-reading, but it's a very worthy book. It's included in a Piper omnibus called Paratime which gives the book some helpful context.
Thanks, richardderus. That sounds like it could be fun, and it reminds me of a Star Trek episode.
This discussion reminds me that it's about time for a re-read, actually...
Your point about the impact of the plague in the final third of the book fits my thoughts entirely. Do see my review for my appreciation of this wonderful book.
I have read and reviewed Outlander as a result of your reccomendation.
Modern guy falls into the past in Ireland as he takes a rubbing on an Irish cross. He's a bit of a pansy, and his modern-day love is rather a bitch, but the writing is sound and the story engaging. I wish I could read it again, because I remember it was a great story, although the title is off.
The series posits the existence of posthuman successor species the Danellians as the one-and-only possible end of evolution, so the Time Patrol is set up to "police" time and make sure no deviation from the evolutionary track that results in the Danellians coming forth is allowed.
No one inside the world-frame of the collection's component novellas seems to question the rightness and fairness and inevitability of this. I did, from the first time I heard a character talk about it. I wonder if Anderson's unsubtle libertarianism displayed throughout the book was just an inoculation for the larger message....
Also, Phillip Pullman's trilogy of His Dark Materials ranks quite high on my list of books of parallel worlds. The title of the three books may differ depending on where you are. The 3 books are The Golden Compass (or Northern Lights), The Subtle Knife and The Amber Spyglass.
And since we're on Children's titles (although His Dark Materials may not qualify as just Children's because it works on so many levels), I think we can throw in Eoin Colfer's Artemis Fowl's series as well. I think there's a book on some time travel in them, but I can't remember which ones. :)
I'm sure there are a lot of time travel in Star Trek books, but I've only watched the series, haven't read any of the books. I'm only half-trek?
42margaretplays First Message
Could it be Kindred by Octavia Butler? That's the only one I can think of with the plot you describe.
I thought it was well done, though, not suprisingly, grim. The book does a good job bringing home the brutality of slavery by putting a contemporary person (who only knows about slavery indirectly and impersonally) in the middle of it. As for the sci-fi aspects, it doesn't give too much explanation to how the time travel works, but does, if I remember correctly contain the standard device of altering one's future by messing around with the past.
I agree with The Time Traveler's Wife and Time and Again, and The Mirror by Maryls Millhiser is one of my all time favorites. Outlander is good but mainly just the first book of the series deals with time travel (it is touched on in a couple of the other books but in more detail in the first, good historical fiction series though). I also really like Timeline.
Fyrefly ~ I also very much enjoyed A Wrinkle in Time by L'Engle!
My all-time favorite is the Dancers at the End of Time trilogy by Michael Moorcock, which includes An Alien Heat, The Hollow Lands, and The End of All Songs.
Here's a brief review from the Amazon.com website: "Enter a decaying far, far future society, a time when anything and everything is possible, where words like 'conscience' and 'morality' are meaningless, and where heartfelt love blossoms mysteriously between Mrs Amelia Underwood, an unwilling time traveller, and Jherek Carnelian, a bemused denizen of the End of Time. The Dancers at the End of Time . . . is a brilliant homage to the 1890s of Wilde, Beardsley and the fin de siecle decadents, satire at its sharpest and most colourful."
Immense fun. Had a nostalgic afternoon entering my 70-odd Moorcock volumes onto LibraryThing a few weeks ago.
And not forgetting H.G. Wells Time Machine
It's interesting how many people have cited children's fiction and I like all the ones above too. I would add Tom's midnight garden (Phillippa Pearce and The Driftway (Penelope Lively)
There is also another children's time travel book for which I am still searching. I can't remember the title but remember the plot and that I enjoyed it immensely. The plot revolves around a little girl staying in an English Tudor house. She slips though time to join a storyline involving the politics of 17th century England and (I think) the Stuart Kings. If anyone has any insight into the title of this book, I would be forever grateful.
Now, this series is not for the faint of heart. SK can be gruesome, foul and even perverse at times... but aside from that the characters, plot and massive scope (a journey through "todash" space, time and all of SK's most popular books woven into the gunslinger's world) bring this series to the top of the list.
I posted earlier in the Green Dragon that I just ordered Lester Del Rey's fabulous Tunnel Through Time last night through Amazon. I'm 45 years old, and that was my first Time Travel book, read when I was in the Seventh Grade, and I have fond memories of this book!
I haven't read it since Middle School but remember much of the book in delicious detail, so I can't wait to see how it holds up all these years later!
Shortly after reading Tunnel Through Time I read my first Ray Bradbury collection and fell in love with A Sound of Thunder, which I'm sure will be mentioned as I read further down this thread!
Time travel plays a part in my absolute favorite book, Gene Wolfe's The Book of the New Sun, which I recommend enthusiastically for fans of the Moorcock series and other readers who like to work along with the author a little bit.
Another interesting one is Time and Again by Jack Finney, which involves time travel by hypnosis rather than machinery.
My other favorite was Robert A. Heinlein's The Door Into Summer. A great mystery/adventure yarn cloaked in science fiction. The future - in which time travel was routine - was (are you ready?) 1970!
Ray Bradbury's novels often have a feel of time travel about them - Dandelion Wine, for example, or Something Wicked This Way Comes.
A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court by Mark Twain.
Finally, Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut, in which antihero Billy Pilgram famously becomes "unstuck in time."
Time and Again I loathed. Ick.
The Time Traveler's Wife was really well done, but not a novel I think I'd read again.
To Say Nothing of the Dog is still my favorite.
Also, a good one for teens or older kids is Gary Paulsen's The Transall Saga, although I enjoyed it and am definitely NOT a kid! I didn't even know it was a time travel book until I was well into it.
What I would consider among the best:
Time and Again
A Sound of Thunder
Others I would recommend:
Our Place in Time
Beyond this Time
They are unknown authors but their stories are very intriguing and worth reading.
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Blow my own trumpet time:
my latest time-travel project can be read at http://www.thetime-travellerandhisdog.blogspot.com
Related topic: I don't know what it will mean book acquisition-wise, but I will be attending my first-ever ArmadilloCon on Sunday to hear an Alternate History panel. Joe R. Lansdale will be on the panel, and I like his stuff (Savage Season, Two-Bear Mambo, Bad Chili among the Hap Collins books, A Fine Dark Line among the alternate history titles); I'm excited to be able to go to the 30th anniversary edition of this fest.
A whole hour of alternate history discussions by actual practicioners! WOOT!
Right now I'm listening to Neil Gaiman's Interworld on CD. It is very interesting so far and is about a young man who accidentally discovers he is a "walker" able to traverse dimensions.
The real value of time travel is found in a short story, "Full Chicken Richness".
I have always hoped that both works would one day be made into films.
I loved most of the Diana Gabaldron series although they were a little heavy on the romance, also loved The Mirror, Time after Time, and The Time Traveller's Wife. I like the kind of time travel rooted in the urban scene, that is, it's happening to real people, not sci fi creatures. I so want to believe it is possible...
It's about a man and a woman who involuntarily are shifted throughout time, keeping only the items they are wearing or touching. At one point they work in a restaurant in Mexico (maybe Puerta Vallarta) and through the story the man always finds work washing dishes.
It's been driving me nuts, so any help would be greatly appreciated.
Sounds like J.O.B: A Comedy of Justice by Robert A. Heineiin.
Washing dishes was a reaccuring theme in many of Heinlein's books.
I have to disagree about Connie Willis; I have always found her books charming and harrowing at once. I never got into the Tuesday Next novels - they just didn't work for me.
I haven't found a book that is as literate and vivid about time travel as Time and Again. Any suggestions for a book where the prose, narrative power and characters would pass muster in literature, not just in sci-fi genre, involving time travel?
I think you also have to look at Elise by Grimwood, also a very good one, out of print and now expensive but worth it, also overlooked is Jack Finneys short stories, there are several of his short stories that have been drawn together and About Time is probably the best and easiest to find. Finneys books are all very good.
One book abotu Time Travel that is under the radar is A Shortcut in Time by Charles Dickenson, I enjoyed it very much.
Out of print but worth finding is a book by Richard Brennert I read 20 years ago as well as a collected short story collection by him called Her Pilgrim Soul.
I did enjoy Diana Gabaldons first book but it was the best of hers, Outlander.
From the romance section I liked A Knight in Shining Armor the best by Jude Devereaux
One of the best I've read.
Replay - Ken Grimwood
Time And Again - Jack Finney
The Accidental Time Machine - Joe Haldeman
Expiration Date - Duane Swierczynski
The Door Into Summer - Robert Heinlein
Lightning - Dean Koontz
Pastwatch: the Redemption of Christopher Columbus - Orson Scott Card
Doomsday - Connie Willis
I feel a bit like a time-travel genre junkie. Unfortunately, I haven't been able to achieve the same high I got with Replay.
I've heard that Ken Grimwood was in the process of writing a sequel when he died. I hope someone had the forethought to pass on the unfinished manuscript to another author to finish up. Does anybody else have any further information on the possible sequel?
Incidentally, I heard about it Replay at a time-travel themed SF convention where a panel discussed greatest time-travel reads. In keeping with the time-travel theme, there wasn't a guest of honour; instead, author Ian Watson dressed in Victorian clothes and did as speech as HG Wells: the Ghost of Honour.
My favourite time-travel story annoys me because I can't remember its name. It's a short story by Philip K. Dick The time-travellers are caught in some kind of pause in their temporal travels where they get out and talk to people in the normal world. They are doomed (perhaps) because they are going to crash. Or are they? It starts off fairly clearly but, as with the best of Dick, we soon get contradictory explanations for what is really going on, each of which is given evidence to support the idea that that explanation must be the *true* one.
I'm hoping someone can suggest the name of this story. It was in an anthology I borrowed from the library but can't find it now :-(
I poked around the internet and found out that Marina Oswald is still alive and there are interviews with her on U-Tube.
If by the "last few developments" you mean the severe injuries suffered by a certain character, I wasn't keen on that either.
Diana Gabaldons' :- Outlander series
Ken Grimwood :- Replay
To name just a few!
BTW... I bookmarked the thread a verrry long time ago as I am an avid fan of time travel books, but never joined the site until today to contribute.
Any ideas?? I'll recognize it immediately when I see the title. Thank you!!
It explores the nature of conscience, personal responsibility, and the great man theory through alternative events on Tinian Island leading up to the atomic bombing of Japan in 1945. It's definitely got a place on my favorites shelf now.
It's the sequel to a short-story collection set in an alternative reality where the Prussian Empire controls 1938 London, and the future freedom of England depends on an elderly forensic sorceress and an even older wampyr.
Okay. Is it strange that this book has been haunting me for years. I can remember such little detail about it, but it's stuck with me so long. Here are some details:
- It's about a female (girl or woman) who is moving through either time or location (can't remember which or if both).
- There's a portal that she's connected to somehow. She keeps shifting uncontrollably.
- There's something about a sacrifice
- She's running from someone/thing
- I recall a scene where there are naked women dancing to some sort of ritual on a beach.
- I believe the theme is coming of age. I am not too certain.
Am I weird or what!? I definitely read it in 1994, so it couldn't have been written after that.
I thought it was Rite of Passage by Alexi Panshin but it's not it.
I also have an inkling that it was a part of a series, something Asmiov-esque.
Anybody have any ideas?
I really liked the book and would like to reread it, so I would be glad if anyone who knows can tell me the title! :)
Knowing that you read it at age 9-12 is helpful. Knowing when you would have been at this age would help even more. Around 2001 I put together a searchable database of time travel literature containing about 3,200 items. A good number of these are YA stories since I was managing an antiquarian bookstore specializing in children's books when I compiled the list.
One pair of stories by Edward Ormondroyd is Time at the Top (1963) and its sequel All in Good Time. The concept is that people from the "present" live in an apartment building and by traveling in an elevator, they go back in time. There they meet a family of the Victorian era. I grant that this is not the description you gave for your story.
If you think you'd recognize the title, look at the list of 724 titles I identified as "juvenile". The list includes author surname, title, and year. You can open up each link in a new tab and see if the cover art and description match your memory.
The idea is that David, an ordinary guy, suddenly gets a message from his as yet unborn daughter from the future, Destroy the time machine that you are building or you will be killed. This he does but unfortunately now his daughter has no existence in the new time stream!
David realizes the mistake that he has made and now sets about trying to restore his daughter's timeline at any cost. In the process he has to defeat those who are trying to rewrite history so that Nazi Germany can win the Second World War!
This book has everything from sadness and self sacrifice through to humor and sexuality and it pushes the envelope on all the traditional time travel paradoxes.
A great read and thoroughly recommended.
Link for A Time for Susan http://www.afterlifenovels.com/time-travel-novel.html
For light reading, I liked Adventures of Conrad Stargard, Book 1: The Cross-Time Engineer. Probably not the most politically correct, but a nice series.
Forgot about Stephen King's The Dark Tower series. I need to get back to that - there was quite a delay for King to get that finished, and I stopped waiting. I think it's about time to re-start and finish the whole series.
Got so many good ideas to add to my TBR (like I need to...)!
I don't think I saw The X President mentioned here or John Varley's Millennium.
Perhaps it will be useful to someone here.
Two of my favorites, All You Zombies and The Anubis Gates were mentioned in post #2.
A bit surprised that Michael Bishop's No Enemy But Time has not yet been brought up.
Not as surprised to see the absence of Jerry Yulsman's often overlooked and underrated 'kill Hitler' pastiche entitled Elleander Morning.