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Time Traveller's Wife [Large Print] [Paperback]

Audrey Niffenegger
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (168 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Sept. 2 2009 Large Print Press
A #1 New York Times Bestseller, A Selection of the Today Show Book Club, A Finalist for Book Sense Fiction of the Year -- A dazzling novel in the most untraditional fashion, this is the remarkable story of Henry DeTamble, a dashing, adventuresome librarian who travels involuntarily through time, and Clare Abshire, an artist whose life takes a natural sequential course. Henry and Clare's passionate love affair endures across a sea of time and captures the two lovers in an impossibly romantic trap, and it is Audrey Niffenegger's cinematic storytelling that makes the novel's unconventional chronology so vibrantly triumphant.

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From Publishers Weekly

This highly original first novel won the largest advance San Francisco-based MacAdam/Cage had ever paid, and it was money well spent. Niffenegger has written a soaring love story illuminated by dozens of finely observed details and scenes, and one that skates nimbly around a huge conundrum at the heart of the book: Henry De Tamble, a rather dashing librarian at the famous Newberry Library in Chicago, finds himself unavoidably whisked around in time. He disappears from a scene in, say, 1998 to find himself suddenly, usually without his clothes, which mysteriously disappear in transit, at an entirely different place 10 years earlier-or later. During one of these migrations, he drops in on beautiful teenage Clare Abshire, an heiress in a large house on the nearby Michigan peninsula, and a lifelong passion is born. The problem is that while Henry's age darts back and forth according to his location in time, Clare's moves forward in the normal manner, so the pair are often out of sync. But such is the author's tenderness with the characters, and the determinedly ungimmicky way in which she writes of their predicament [...] that the book is much more love story than fantasy. It also has a splendidly drawn cast, from Henry's violinist father [...] to Clare's odd family and a multitude of Chicago bohemian friends. [...] It is a fair tribute to her skill and sensibility to say that the book leaves a reader with an impression of life's riches and strangeness rather than of easy thrills.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From Booklist

On the surface, Henry and Clare Detamble are a normal couple living in Chicago's Lincoln Park neighborhood. Henry works at the Newberry Library and Clare creates abstract paper art, but the cruel reality is that Henry is a prisoner of time. It sweeps him back and forth at its leisure, from the present to the past, with no regard for where he is or what he is doing. It drops him naked and vulnerable into another decade, wearing an age-appropriate face. In fact, it's not unusual for Henry to run into the other Henry and help him out of a jam. Sound unusual? Imagine Clare Detamble's astonishment at seeing Henry dropped stark naked into her parents' meadow when she was only six. Though, of course, until she came of age, Henry was always the perfect gentleman and gave young Clare nothing but his friendship as he dropped in and out of her life. It's no wonder that the film rights to this hip and urban love story have been acquired. Elsa Gaztambide
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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CLARE: The library is cool and smells like carpet cleaner, although all I can see is marble. Read the first page
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Customer Reviews

Most helpful customer reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautifully written Feb. 22 2006
A great tale of love no matter the circumstances, highly reccomended.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Too much of the same! Oct. 28 2009
By Tanya
I can not figure out why this book has received so many great reviews. Although I liked the story line and the author's great attention to detail and time lines I found the story to be repetative and dragged out. I didn't dislike this book I just didn't think it was great. Maybe the movie will be better?!?
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Nothing Wrong With Mainstream March 21 2005
The biggest complaint I hear about "The Time Traveler's Wife" is that it is that the mainstream enjoys it - that it's "commercial" and "popular" like "The Secret Life of Bees," Life of Pi," and "My Fractured Life." But, what's wrong with that? "The Time Traveler's Wife" is a fantastic and unique book. I for one loved "The Secret Life of Bees", "Life of Pi", and "My Fractured Life" and I loved "The Time Traveler's Wife" too.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Not a good read. I didn't enjoy it. May 17 2014
Firstly, I usually don't come to write reviews on books i've disliked, I usually don't waste my time, but this one struck a cord and it bothered me. I know hate is a strong word, but I feel no such love towards this book. The writing style of the book just runs into paragraph long thoughts that seem to end into a mixed emotion or thought. I mean at times, the writing was professional and book reader worthy, but then the author threw in vulgar words and slangs, and what really annoyed me was writing paragraphs in another language without even explaining it to people who actually only speak english. I am done with the complaints on the writing styles, I digress. As for the storyline, I didn't care for it. It was pretty depressing, and confusing at times. I really hate romantic stories that end horribly wrong. Spoiler...I also hated how almost to the end of the book the main character, Clare, decides to just out of the blue think about sleeping with Gomez and then just having to tell Henry.. almost at the end of the book. I don't know, cheating on you're girlfriend/boyfriend is an awful big deal breaker for me. Anyway, i'm done. I didn't like it. end of story. end of review.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A mixed bag this one Dec 29 2012
By Shamus
If I had read this book a week ago my review would have been enthusiastic and entirely positive. Eventually though, I found the novelty wearing thin. After Henry has been found ten or more times naked and bloody from his time travel adventures I wanted to say, "enough I get it." Similarly a half dozen miscarriages is enough to get the point that having children for our lovers is difficult.

The quality of the writing is always of a high order. The literary and artistic allusions are an education in themselves I certainly learned a great deal.

This book should have been pared down to a lean 300 pages and it would have earned a full five stars from me. Despite what another reviewer said, I did find it confusing in spots. You have to pay attention to the double chronology: Clare is 22 Henry is 30 followed by Henry is 40 Clare is 17,etc. At 17 of course Clare would not have had as many visits from Henry, but then Clare sometimes knew information provided by an older Henry so she could then inform him things about the future that he didn't know.

I wish the central paradox in time travel had been handled more deftly. Henry keeps denying Clare personal information about the future while giving away tips on the stock market and eventually buying a winning lottery ticket in advance of the draw. Of course this radically changes the future for the people who would have bought the winning ticket and a huge impact on the future, but that issue is side stepped.

In fact if you knit picked at this tale it would unravel completely. You just keep wanting to ignore the problems with the storyline because it is so damn well told.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Didn't Quite Live Up To The Hype Dec 23 2011
By Lydia - Novel Escapes TOP 500 REVIEWER
I'm a little late reading The Time Traveler's Wife and I think this affected my opinion, having heard such rave reviews about this book. I enjoyed it overall, but wasn't sure it lived up to all the fantastic things I had heard about it prior to reading it myself.

At first I found the time traveling distracting and slightly confusing, but once I settled into the book, it didn't get in the way of my reading. I thought this unique story was written beautifully and the character's richly portrayed. Clare and Henry remained in my mind long after I read the novel.

I did however find the book started to drag somewhat for me about a third of the way through. I think it was the anticipation of something happening and I definitely wanted to know what it was, but it seemed to take forever to find out and not enough seemed to happen in between to satisfy my patience.

Unfortunately I'm afraid The Time Traveler's Wife didn't quite live up to the hype for me. Overall, it was quite good, but I didn't think it was as fantastic as everyone had said it would be, nor did I bawl my eyes out at anytime which I heard might occur - and I am a romantic sentimentalist so it surprised me that I didn't!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
By Jennifer Cameron-Smith TOP 50 REVIEWER
The novel begins with a prologue in which we meet the main characters Clare and Henry, and learn of the nature of their relationship. Henry DeTamble is a time traveller. He has Chrono-Displacement Disorder - a genetic glitch which, especially at times of stress, moves him from the present into his own past, and sometimes into the future. Time travel is dangerous for Henry: he arrives at some other point in his life naked and nauseated, vulnerable and often in danger. Henry meets his wife, Clare Abshire, at the Newberry Library in Chicago for the first time when she is 20 and he is 28. Clare has known Henry since she was 6.

The story is told, in alternating first-person perspectives, by Clare and Henry. Time travel has its dangers for Henry, but for Clare there are periods of absence - some short, others long - while she waits for Henry to reappear and never knowing at what stage he will be in his life when he reappears. The time traveller's wife spends a lot of time waiting, wondering and wishing.

`Why is love intensified by absence?'

It's a love story, complicated by Henry's involuntary and disruptive time-travelling. It's a comparatively long novel, but easy to read because of the way in which it is laid out. Many of my friends loved this novel, and I'm not entirely sure why it's taken me such a long time to get around to reading it. I'm glad that I've read it now.

`Time is nothing.'

Jennifer Cameron-Smith
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Most recent customer reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Ruined by an unnecessarily depressing ending
This book has elicited in me mixed emotions. The story is certainly original. I admit I bought it for the vaguely sci-fi assumption from which it begins to discover that it was... Read more
Published 14 days ago by Anakina
5.0 out of 5 stars My Favorite Book
The Time Traveler's Wife is my favorite book! I've read it so many times and enjoy it every time. For those that have seen the movie but have not read the book; please read the... Read more
Published 5 months ago by Beth
5.0 out of 5 stars A very insightful story
Audrey Niffeneger's The Time Traveler's Wife is a great love story with a fascinating component. It helps one ponder our purpose on this intriguing part of the universe called... Read more
Published 6 months ago by Paul Chana
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing Love Story
I bought this book and read it before the release of the film. It is an epic love story & you really fall in love with the characters. Much more detail than the film. Read more
Published 16 months ago by Amanda Nelson
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved and Lost, Worlds Without End
Claire and Henry meet and fall in love. Each time they meet, they discover each other all over again. And each time they part, it seems like the pain of final parting. Read more
Published 17 months ago by John M. Ford
5.0 out of 5 stars Fabulous!
My husband and I read this book together....it was perfect for that. We were both deeply moved by the characters. Amazing storyline, and so beautifully told. Read more
Published on Nov. 24 2011 by Tasha Stimpson
5.0 out of 5 stars Time Well Spent
Once I started reading this book I could not put it down. The writers style was great and the words just flowed. Easy read and captivating.
Published on Jan. 6 2011 by Mrs.RV
3.0 out of 5 stars OK Book
Had a hard time following the plot sometimes. Perhaps the movie is easier to comprehend. It was an ok "romance" book.
Published on Jan. 3 2011 by Gerrie
4.0 out of 5 stars A Wonderful Romance
My friend urged me to read this book. I did and I thought it was one of best novels that I have read this year and I read a fair amount. Read more
Published on Dec 12 2010 by BooksForMe
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