A few years ago, my good friend Miss Holt gave me this book for some occasion:
Receiving a book as a gift is always interesting, because books can be so personal. Some people really miss the mark quite largely, but Miss Holt and I lived together some years ago and shared book shelves. She is truly a kindred spirit and remains a good friend, and really gets me when it comes to what I might enjoy to read.
So she gifted me this book, which she claims is her absolute favorite. However, I being of sound mind distinctly remember having to read The Scarlet Pimpernel as that was her absolute favorite, but I digress. There is a considerable amount of pressure associated when someone share something that is their favorite. A favorite book is like a part of your soul. If your giftee should not like it, it’s rather as if they don’t even know you.
So a few years ago, I started reading this book and I just could not get into it. As a warning if you pick it up, this book is first person narrated by Ned a time travelling historian. In the first few chapters, he is severely time lagged and this causes him to be an unreliable and confusing narrator. The first attempt I had at this book, I couldn’t get past that at all and thus gave up after about 50 pages.
It happened that we were at dinner with Miss Holt and her Fiancee Mr. Steele and we were discussing books. She brought up this book, and I shamefully admitted that I had not completed it as of yet. She and Mr. Steele implored me to give the book another chance, promising that once the main character does indeed get some sleep the story will really come together and make a lot of sense.
So, with this in mind, I jumped into the book with renewed optimism and fervor and…
So, I can in good conscience say that this is an excellent read if not a little difficult in the beginning. It covered all of my bases, mystery, Victorian England, time travel principles that are simple yet difficult to understand and of course romance. The authoress Connie Willis won a Hugo Award for this book when it was published in 1998. I had no idea what that meant, but a quick search on google indicates to me that the Hugo Award is given to the best of the science fiction genre each year. Doing some math, Connie Willis was 53 when this novel was published (which makes me happy, there is still time for me!).
So in review, if you are looking for something to get you through the long winter’s night we have ahead I would highly recommend that you check this book out.
Until Next time.