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Tuesday, 8 February 2005
Book Review: The Time Traveler's Wife
Topic: The Time Traveler's Wife
I finished reading, The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger last night and I can't stop thinking about it. I think it's one of the most beautiful novels ever written! I was completely bowled over by it. The Time Traveler's Wife is enchanting, poignant, heartbreaking, funny, sweet, romantic, riviting, and unforgettable.

It's the story of two characters, Henry DeTamble, a librarian and his wife, Clare Abshire, an artist. Henry is a time traveler but not by choice. He was born with a genetic disorder called "Chrono Displacement" which means he will suddenly vanish from the present and either go back or forward in time. The story isn't really about time travel though. It's about the relationship between Henry and Clare and their bitterseet romance. The narrative alternates between their viewpoints as Henry goes back and forewards in time. It's a convoluted plot but the pertinent dates and times are provided to actually make the flip-flop experiences quite logical. This becomes more apparent as the story progresses and the different events fit together in the present time.

I love the way the author has conveyed the range of emotions felt by Henry and Clare and described the nuances of married life. I also like the way she describes Henry's time-traveling disease. It's done so well that the author almost convinced me it's an actual medical condition!

The use of realistic dialogue, unusual metaphors plus believable characters and unpredictable situations all add up to a lovely and beautiful story.

My only quibble is with some of the language in the sex scenes. I thought some of the words were jarring in the story, especially when it was from Clare's viewpoint which I felt didn't ring true with her character. It's such a lovely romantic story and I felt like the strong language spoiled it just a bit. Apart from that, I would say the book is a sheer delight from start to finish.

The Time Traveler's Wife is a book to get lost in and forget about the outside world. It is a book to remember and treasure. A real classic.

Posted by expat-writer at 4:35 PM GMT
Updated: Thursday, 10 February 2005 10:57 PM GMT

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