Saturday, November 17, 2007

The Time Traveler's Wife... A Book Review by Elise

Last night, I finished reading my latest novel, The Time Traveler's Wife, by Audrey Niffenegger. When I first started reading this story, I was immediately in love with it. The premise is fantastic-- the main character, Henry, has "Chrono-Displacement Disorder" and involuntarily travles through time throughout his life, while his wife, Clare, leads a normal sequential life that he pops in and out of. Their first meeting for her begins when she is six years old and Henry, age 36, travles back in time to meet her. Since his time travel is almost completely out of his control, Henry is constantly finding himself in some odd situation or another and I felt that the author did an excellent job of making his "condition" seem completely viable.

The story got off track for me a while into the book, and I found myself not as engaged as I had been in the beginning. Maybe it was that the characters became very selfish, or maybe there were too many unanswered questions-- What happened to Henry when he came back with a black eye? What is the whole thing with Clare's brother and his wife about?-- that were left unresolved for me. Whatever it was, I was not as thrilled with the book when I finished it as I had been when I started it.

As a side note, I was completely apalled by the author's use of a couple of very offensive slang words. I am still confused as to why she thought to use those words-- not only did they not fit into the context of the story, but they took away from the dignity of the writing. Are there adults who actually speak like that-- or was she trying to get some kind of reaction?

For more eloquent reviews, see Amazon's reviews-- the "Most Helpful Critical Review" related most to how I felt. Ultimately, I can't decide if I would recommend this book or not. I do think it would be interesting to talk about it with someone who has read it, so if anyone decides to read it, please let me know.

1 comment:

michelle said...

I've read it too.

I liked it but didn't love it. I definitely liked the idea of the story and certain parts (a fave was when he met his daughter as a child at the museum). Lots of sex, which surprised me, but I did think it sort of made sense given his character.

I only recommend books I love, so I wouldn't recommend this one. I did like it though.