Book: The Time Traveler’s Wife

The Time Traveler's Wife
If McDonald’s® sold books, they’d sell this one. It’s fat, greasy, bitesize, objectionable and tasteless.

Fast, bite-sized and tasteless.
560 pages, ★

Critics were right to call The Time Traveler’s Wife “sexy” in their reviews. It’s “sexy” because it’s absolutely overloaded with sex: sex in the form of extra-marital affairs (which could possibly be excused by time travel), sex in the form of Henry f*cking Clare, and—mostly—sex in the form of Clare f*cking Henry. Sex and time travel are the only two aspects of this book that will stick in my mind.

The story is very simple: Henry and Clare meet, get married, and then attempt to have a baby. The book is written as an amalgamation of their two diaries, with the date and each character’s ages written at the top of each entry. The difference between Henry and Clare’s ages is a little disturbing (30 and 22 in “real time”, or 36 and 6 during an episode of “time travel”).

But time travel in this book is scientifically flawed. On page 322, we discover that this ability is the result of four very authentic-sounding genes: per4, timeless1, Clock and  an ‘unnamed gene’, and the book’s sleeve describes Henry’s time travel as “periodical genetic clock reset”. But by plotting their ages onto a chart, we notice two strange phenomena:

Time Travelers Wife Ages Chart
Henry and Clare’s ages from The Time Traveler’s Wife plotted against time. People who don’t time-travel age in a straight line. Two adjacent dots indicate two of the characters co-existing (and sometimes interacting).

First, Henry’s time travel can’t be due to “genetic clock reset” because he almost always travels backwards in time, not forwards.

Second, look at the uppermost orange dot on the chart. This shows that the end of the novel, Clare, too, travels back in time.

So what’s going on? The author tells us at one point that Henry is schizophrenic and all his time-travel is a hallucination. But if that were true, then he’d be able to hallucinate about the past but not step into the future and change it. It also doesn’t explain Clare’s diary entries from the future—unless the whole book is a hallucination. Either way, I no longer care. ★★

10 thoughts on “Book: The Time Traveler’s Wife

    1. Absolutely. And the dates don’t add up.

      There was far too much sex in this book for my liking. What kind of 20-year-old initiates woman passionate sex with an alcoholic 28-year-old man?

      And what kind of marriage could survive five miscarriages?

      And what kind of 36-year-old guy stands naked talking to a six-year-old girl?

      And the time-travel is a difficult topic written haphazardly.

      And what kind of author writes about all that crap?

      This novel is all messed up. It only topped the charts because it’s pornography disguised as a novel.

      Thank you for reading!🙂

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  1. I saw the movie and I liked it but when you really look at the dynamics James, I must say-it is a bit disturbing. Hmmm, now I look at this with a different eye. I am not sure how much detail was given in the book, but I am curious. The question is, how curious am I? LOL.

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    1. You might like it more than I did. After all, it was a very popular book. Every reader’s different, right?

      For me, sex stands out in a book. If there’s half of page of sex, then in my memory, the whole book was about sex. (I felt the same about The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo film—that movie was disgusting.) Add that to ‘scientific impossibility’ and I’m giving it just 2 stars.

      A lot of people can probably read this and think nothing of it… or even enjoy it. But personally, I can’t. Maybe I just analyse what I read too much.

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  2. I heard a lot of people saying the same things you have about it. I’ve read several urban fantasy novels and a majority of them have some amount of sex in them but not much too bug me (with the exception of the Fever series) but I wasn’t expecting Time Traveler’s Wife to have so much in it, I’ve read a few snippets. So it’s officially off of my list for at least now.

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