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How to Stop Time by Matt Haig
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How to Stop Time

by Matt Haig

Other authors: See the other authors section.

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
1,1627411,597 (3.79)46
Tom Hazard has a dangerous secret. He may look like an ordinary 41-year-old, but owing to a rare condition, he's been alive for centuries. Tom has lived history--performing with Shakespeare, exploring the high seas with Captain Cook, and sharing cocktails with Fitzgerald. Now, he just wants an ordinary life. So Tom moves back to London, his old home, to become a high school history teacher--the perfect job for someone who has witnessed the city's history first hand. Better yet, a captivating French teacher at his school seems fascinated by him. But the Albatross Society, the secretive group which protects people like Tom, has one rule: Never fall in love. As painful memories of his past and the erratic behavior of the Society's watchful leader threaten to derail his new life and romance, the one thing he can't have just happens to be the one thing that might save him. Tom will have to decide once and for all whether to remain stuck in the past, or finally begin living in the present. How to Stop Time is a bighearted, wildly original novel about losing and finding yourself, the inevitability of change, and how with enough time to learn, we just might find happiness.… (more)
  1. 30
    The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger (shaunie)
  2. 00
    Before Ever After by Samantha Sotto (BookshelfMonstrosity)
    BookshelfMonstrosity: For another take on immortality, try Before Ever After, in which a woman learns that her supposedly late husband is actually alive -- and centuries older than she thought. A wealth of obscure historical lore makes events come alive.
  3. 00
    Time and Again by Jack Finney (Othemts)
  4. 01
    The Buried Giant by Kazuo Ishiguro (Othemts)
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» See also 46 mentions

English (71)  German (3)  All languages (74)
Showing 1-5 of 71 (next | show all)
Pg 24 - ...all we can ever be is faithful to our memories of reality, rather that the reality itself, which is something closely related but never precisely the same thing.

Pg 40 - ...as with every age, it was a carousel of many periods at once. The past stays and echoes even as modernity roars ahead.

Pg 56 - The key to happiness wasn't being yourself, because what did that even mean? Everyone had many selves. No. The key to happiness is finding the lie that suits you best.

Pg 61 - All you can do with the past is carry it around, felling its weight slowly increase, praying it never crushes you completely.

Pg 319 - you cannot know the future. You look at the news and it looks terrifying. But you can never be sure. That it the whole thing with the future. You don't know. At some point you have to accept that you don't know. You have to stop flicking ahead and just concentrate on the page you are on.

Pg 320 - Those who cannot remember the past...are condemned to repeat it. And you only need to switch on the news to see the dreadful repetitions, the terrible unlearned lessons, the twenty-first century slowly becoming a crude cover version of the twentieth.

Pg 325 - Everything is going to be all right. Or, if not, everything is going to be, so let's not worry.

Pg 325 - There is only the present. Just as every object on earth contains similar and interchanging atoms, so every fragment of time contains aspects of every other. ( )
  DuffDaddy | May 15, 2020 |
Thought it was an interesting concept. Loved dipping into various historic periods and seeing them from Tom's perspective. Challenged me to think about what it looks like to live fearlessly in the present moment rather than idealizing the past or worrying about the future. ( )
  KoestK | May 4, 2020 |
Brilliantly done, Haig. Damn well done. Narrated by Mark Meadows. Please read this review for more info:

https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/1954947236?book_show_action=true&from_...

Highly recommended, and four stars. ( )
  stephanie_M | Apr 30, 2020 |
I enjoyed the book although it was hard for me to get into it at first. The premise was solid but the writing style took quite a while for me to get used to. The characters felt very similar to one another and even if there is a fantastic element involved, I still need to feel like the people exposed to it act realistically to that element.

It feels a bit hard for me to believe that the protagonist remembered so many details from so long ago when I can't even remember the color of my first bike. There are many other hard to swallow details that surround the fantastical element of the book but it's late and I don't feel like writing a long review.

Another aspect that really got on my nerves was how apparently everyone in Tom's life for some reason spoke in a prosaic, metaphor heavy way. Even kids in the 17th century. Sure, yeah, let's go with that. Why not.

I hoped at least we'll get an unexpected twist in the end and the bad guy won't be the most obvious character in the book. I mean come on, the author probably made him so obviously the "shocking, it was him all along" so we'll have a distraction for a more interesting and subtle ending. Nope. It was the obvious bad guy. Sure, why not.

The reason I'm giving it 3 stars is because there was a great deal of research put into this book to get the historical facts accurate and that's worth something. The book has all it needs to be a great 4/5 but I just wished the author would've focused more on creating a compelling narrative and focus less on giving interesting historical trivia and forcing philosophical concepts whenever the pacing could spare 2 minutes.

I'll try more books by Matt because many other great authors have a few bad apples and it would be a shame to miss out on their better works.





( )
  parzivalTheVirtual | Mar 22, 2020 |
A quick & easy, delightful read. Characters were easily relatable and very charming. Many passages gave me pause for thought about life and the passage of time. I truly enjoyed this. ( )
  CatherineStewart | Mar 21, 2020 |
Showing 1-5 of 71 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (2 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Matt Haigprimary authorall editionscalculated
Meadows, MarkNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Riddell, ChrisIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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I often think of what Hendrich said to me, over a century ago, in his New York apartment.
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"It's strange, isn't it? All the things that we have lived to see.... spectacles, the printing press, newspapers, rifles, compasses, the telescope, the pendulum clock, the piano, Impressionist paintings, photography, Napoleon, champagne, semi-colons, billboards, the hot dog."
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Eternally young, longing for true connections. I can trust no one. (PeggyDean)

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