2022 Book Review: The Time Traveler’s Wife

The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger

A Science Fiction, 2003 by Zola Books, 513 Pages

What I Didn’t Like:

  • The age gaps. Not always, obviously, but sometimes. I guess my main point of cringe was that the characters didn’t seem to have a problem with some of these age gaps. No spoilers but it made me a little uncomfortable sometimes. 
  • Many of the details of this one come across as unnecessary rambling. Artist names, author names, descriptions of dinners and clothing … it’s all details we don’t necessarily need that doesn’t add anything to this story. It bogs down the story and makes it move slower than it needed to. 
  • Claire’s childhood is shockingly out of touch for most of us. That pulled me out of the story a few times, mostly because I wasn’t expecting it. Also, I sort of hated the way the servants felt cliche. 

What I Did Like:

  • Compelling way to tell a story. The time jumps, hints at things that may come up later, and small teasers are dropped throughout this book and make it fascinating. You have to keep reading it to get all the answers that are teased, which is the magic of this book. 
  • Unique take on time traveling. I liked the detail and the differences between Henry’s form of time traveling and the more traditional form you often see in science fiction. 
  • Playing with the “rules” of the genres. I like how this author decided to write a romance that’s really science fiction. I like how they decided to bend what is acceptable for both genres into a sort of mesh for this book. That’s powerful when it works.

Who Should Read This One:

  • Readers who like romance but want a deeper, more complex story. 
  • Time travel fans who want something that isn’t the same thing you’ve seen before and can handle romance and sexual situations.

My Rating: 3 Stars

  • This is perfectly the kind of book I envision when I say my 3 star rating is for niche readers. This isn’t going to appeal to all science fiction fans (or all romance fans for that matter) but if you are the niche audience for this one it will be your new favorite. I feel confident I can rec this one out to the right readers now!

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