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Time and Again (1970)

de Jack Finney

Altres autors: Mira la secció altres autors.

Sèrie: Jack Finney's Time and Again (1)

MembresRessenyesPopularitatValoració mitjanaMencions
3,7451332,590 (3.92)222
Since it was first published in 1970, Time and Again has become a truly timeless cult classic with a vast and loyal following. This 25th anniversary edition, filled with its original unique period illustrations, is being published to coincide with its long-awaited sequel, From Time to Time. Time and Again will soon be a major motion picture produced and directed by Robert Redford.… (més)
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» Mira també 222 mencions

Es mostren 1-5 de 133 (següent | mostra-les totes)
A time travel story set in NYC in the 1970s and the 1880s, and also a mystery with some interesting twists along the way. I enjoyed the story quite a bit and only have one quibble: the love story felt superficial and only there as a way to get the main character to make certain decisions. I wasn't invested in the romance aspect at all and there was no chemistry between the two characters. I think the book would have been better without it, honestly. ( )
  electrascaife | Nov 20, 2021 |
I was hoping for a lot more from this book, but it really dragged (drug?) in places. Like anytime the author wanted to display how much he'd researched 1882 New York City. The mechanics of time travel were about the lamest I'd ever read. I actually liked the conclusion, but I was still pretty eager for the story to just get over with already. ( )
  KrakenTamer | Oct 23, 2021 |
This book about time travel by Jack Finney is a delight. The detail he has put into 19th century Manhattan by combining actual historical information, photos, and sketches and then wrapping in the science fiction aspect. This book is a lot of fun to read if you are a historical buff. ( )
  auldhouse | Sep 30, 2021 |
Si Morley is working as an artist at an advertising agency when a mysterious man shows up at his workplace and asks to meet with him. Ruben takes Si to lunch and offers him a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to take part in a secret government project–but Ruben can’t share any details until Si agrees to participate.

Si ultimately makes the leap of faith and finds himself leaving the New York of about 1970 behind for the New York of 1882. The secret of time travel has been cracked. In 1882, Si is curious to track down his girlfriend’s adoptive grandfather. The man committed suicide late in life, leaving behind a letter that was decades old and postmarked from New York in January 1882. Si wants to unravel this little family mystery but soon finds himself in trouble on many fronts.

I’m not a fan of New York. To be fair, I’ve only spent one day there and that was the day after my best friend’s funeral; still, nothing about the city has ever appealed to me. That said, Time and Again didn’t work particularly well for me but I think those who love New York and its history will relish it.

I don’t remember exactly where I heard about this book but I do remember that the inclusion of historical photos and drawings from all around New York was what appealed to me. It reminded me a bit of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children in that respect. But I didn’t feel that the art was incorporated very smoothly in Time and Again. Every illustration was accompanied by a passage in the text similar to this real example: “The sketch–just below–is one I’ve made showing our train just after leaving Grand Central Station and the El platform.” It’s the only picture and it shows exactly what the author describes. There’s absolutely no reason to tell me that it’s “just below.” That kind of thing just pulls me out of the story. Also, my copy was fairly old so it was really hard to make out much detail in the pictures. I don’t know if the ink had faded or if the pictures were too old and murky to print well in the first place. I’d be curious to see this book printed on glossy textbook paper.

In addition to real photographs, Mr. Finney also incorporated real events and newspaper excerpts from 1882. I liked that feel of authenticity.

There’s a solid mystery at the heart of the book and the solution surprised me. I guessed pieces of what was going on here and there but I was ultimately surprised when the author revealed the final twist.

In the end, the book took a fairly serious bent and left me pondering themes of ethics and science. Just because we can do something, should we? Who decides these kinds of thorny issues and do they represent the majority of people in the world? Because some science does affect us all and there’s no going back from the knowledge once we broach it.

But the reason that I’ve only rated this a forgettable three stars is because the author got a bit too lost in describing life in 1880s New York for my comfort. There is a plot, and it finally gets pretty fast-paced in the last 1/3 of the book, but the first 2/3 is a long slog of details and descriptions. People who are more familiar with the city than I am will marvel at the locations they’re familiar with and how they’ve changed over the years. The idea of sleigh bells and horses and no cars and no skyscrapers will leave some readers in awe. But that kind of writing for that amount of time just isn’t to my taste. I also felt that the author romanticized life in the 1880s. He briefly mentions diseases and rampant corruption but other than that, he seems to feel that life back then is superior in every way. I’m sure that in some ways it was, but it wasn’t all roses and sweet innocence either.

Definitely pick this up if you ❤️ New York and everything about it but if you, like me, don’t particularly care for the city or pages and pages of description, you might want to give it a pass. ( )
1 vota JG_IntrovertedReader | Sep 15, 2021 |
A nostalgia trip with time travel and amateur sleuth genre trappings. Most enjoyable was the 1882 NYC period piece aspect, the mystery serving as Macguffin to steer the reader around various points of interest: arm of the Statue of Liberty resting in Madison Square; Police Inspector Thomas Byrne's contribution to municipal police culture; the city's municipal plan and architecture; representative folkways and social customs. A love triangle is less crucial to plot than to character, perhaps typically of romance, but to Finney's credit the relationships provide insight into narrator Si's motivations and neither Kate nor Julia are sideshows or conquests. What isn't clear is whether the misogyny is Finney's or his character's -- perhaps it's both, it's on full display throughout.

The central mystery places characters into various historical episodes while chasing down the hidden references in a family letter. Those details from 1882 NYC are tied to a 1970s military project into time travel, and Si's personal interests soon entangle with instances of municipal graft and to the catastrophic Great Fire on Park Row. Mundane details of the period are woven in: the practice among gentry to custom order heel prints, for example; the sights & sounds of a horse-drawn bus ride through Manhattan, or operation of the el system on a winter's day. In this respect Finney crafts a historical novel, almost as immersive as Patrick O'Brian's.

The twist in the tail is satisfying but wouldn't have been necessary for me to enjoy the story overall. It ties together various threads, though, and doesn't seem a cheat when it arrives. The meta aspect of the manuscript itself is even less necessary, though I'm always curious to get an accounting for a first-person narrative, so I was satisfied that Finney provides a fitting rationale.

//

Time travel: Finney's mechanism is reminiscent of William Gibson's Jackpot novels, resting on a concept of time travel as information exchange. Gibson explicitly addresses the concomitant problem of material bodies in different timeframes, how an identity (personality) traveling between times can reside in a body at all times; Finney's hand-waving is most acute in this aspect of the story.

On my wishlist for a long while, pleased to find a used copy as hoped. Should look into both Richard Matheson's Somewhere In Time and Darryl Brock's If I Never Get Back for similar period piece time travel stories. ( )
1 vota elenchus | Sep 6, 2021 |
Es mostren 1-5 de 133 (següent | mostra-les totes)
Time and Again sends out a huge valentine to the past. It's nostalgic and there's something deliciously comforting and escapist in its promise of a New York Eden.
 

» Afegeix-hi altres autors (29 possibles)

Nom de l'autorCàrrecTipus d'autorObra?Estat
Finney, Jackautor primaritotes les edicionsconfirmat
Carr, RichardAutor de la cobertaautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Engel, Mary BessDissenyador de la cobertaautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Jeschke, WolfgangHerausgeberautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Moll, CharlesAutor de la cobertaautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Niffenegger, AudreyPròlegautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Ratzkin,LawrenceCover photographautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
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Since it was first published in 1970, Time and Again has become a truly timeless cult classic with a vast and loyal following. This 25th anniversary edition, filled with its original unique period illustrations, is being published to coincide with its long-awaited sequel, From Time to Time. Time and Again will soon be a major motion picture produced and directed by Robert Redford.

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