Through Space and Time

by Marina

It’s about time . . . travel.

I’m a sucker for books (and movies) with time travel or parallel world elements. In my somewhat limited reading of the genre, I have determined that they fall into two categories. The not-quite-so-detailed fantasy or down-to-the-smallest-detail science fiction. I lean more towards the fantasy ones. The lengthy, scientific explanation doesn’t really interest me. I’m happy to assume that it’s a thing and get on with the heart of the story.

A few months ago I re-watched Frequency (the movie, not the television show) and it prompted me to think about theme-related books I’ve read. These stories usually bring an immediate change in the action. Which, in a world of instant gratification, is right up my alley. The audience (and the main character) sees the changes wrought by going back and forth in time. Or living parallel lives simultaneously. Like in Frequency when the dad, Frank, gets the fingerprints of the serial murder suspect and John, 30 years in the future, is able to retrieve the object instantaneously.

Here a few of my favorite series about time travel and parallel lives.

The Hourglass series by Myra McEntire is about more than time travel. Each book in the series features a different main character and their special paranormal “affliction.” The first book–Hourglass, and the one that hooked me for the series almost immediately, is about Emerson Cole. She had it rough–her parents died on a family ski vacation, she had a mental breakdown and was committed to an institution and, oh yeah, she sees dead people. But, at first, she doesn’t know they’re dead people. It isn’t until her older brother steps in and finds help from Michael Weaver, who is part of a secret organization known as Hourglass (similar to Xavier’s School for Gifted Youngsters), does Emerson start to become comfortable with her abilities.

Kasie West focuses on divergent (different from Tris and Four) Addison Coleman and living her parallel lives in the Pivot Point duology. Divergents, and other paranormal folk, live in the Compound world. Away from the world of normal people so they can use their gifts. When her parents divorce she is given the option to live with either of them–her mother staying in the Compound, her father leaving it to live life as a normal person. Addie uses her gift to perform a Search to decide what direction to take. Similar to books with multiple character points of view, Addie’s parallel lives alternate by chapter.

Tamara Ireland Stone’s Time Between Us duology is about sixteen-year-old Anna Greene and seventeen-year-old Bennett Cooper. But they are separated by seventeen years and thousands of miles. They never should have met let alone fallen in love. But Bennett travels from 2012 to 1995 in search of something he lost. While waiting for that missing item to show up he attends Anna’s school. They inevitably meet. Bennett tries to prevent their relationship. He saves her life. He takes a chance and tells Anna the entire truth so she can decide for herself. And then takes her on adventures like she has been dreaming about for years. However, their time together can be nothing more than temporary considering they are from different times. Or can it?

And, finally, Jessica Brody not only includes time travel in her Unremembered trilogy but there’s also genetic engineering and a futuristic dystopian-like world. Seraphina, a violet-eyed beauty, wakes up without any memories in a hospital following a rescue from a plane crash. Sera struggles to regain her memories. While living in a temporary foster home Sera meets a boy (it’s always a boy, isn’t it?) that arrives with some answers. Which only leads to more questions.

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13 responses to “Through Space and Time”

  1. vickiefinn says:

    My favorite time travel is by Stephen King. Yes it is somewhat horror series but mildly. The 1st book starts with The Gunslinger. Then it goes to 7 books called The Dark Tower series. I couldn’t wait for the requests to come in. Check it out, very different from his usual dark horror themes.

    • Marina says:

      Vickie, I have read a few Stephen King (as you can tell horror isn’t my jam) but not The Dark Tower series. I did enjoy the ones that I did read–maybe I’ll try them again. Thanks for the suggestion.

  2. Gloker says:

    So “The Man the High Castle” by P. Dicks and “Bring the Jubilee” by Ward Moore wouldn’t be your cup of tea? As for movies>>> “12 Monkeys” is TOPS!

  3. Donna Malcevski says:

    Looks like I need to expand my genre reading horizon. Do Diana Gabaldon’s books qualify?

  4. Isaac says:

    I loved Frequency. I saw it in theaters way back when. One of my favorite time travel stories is “All You Zombies” by Robert Heinlein, which inspired the movie Predestination.

  5. Geoff Jensen says:

    I just finished “Dark Matter” by Blake Crouch – talk about an edge-of-the-seat sci-fi thriller! Not so much time travel as parallel dimension travel. The narrator is perfect for the book, too

    On the fantasy side of time / space travel, check out “InterWorld” series, by Neil Gaiman and Michael Reaves (only the first book feat Gaiman), I powered through these 3 books right quick.

    • Marina says:

      Geoff, I’ve been hearing so many good things about Dark Matter. I’ll have to check out the audio. I might be swayed into sci-fi time travel with all of these recommendations.

  6. I adored The Scribe of Siena recently: as well as All Our Wrong Todays:

    I’ve actually read a lot of time-slipping novels lately, so I made a list, too!

    • Marina says:

      Jackie, I ran across your list as I was creating mine. It gave me a few new titles to look at. Thanks! You always seem to make my TBR pile just a little bit bigger.

  7. I Can. Not. Wait. for Droughtlander to end! I am moderately obsessed with Gabaldon’s series and have been since BEFORE I was a librarian!

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