12 novels that play with the concept of time

Do you know those disorienting weeks where you swear Tuesday is Thursday and Thursday is Friday? Time is relative, and more so during a pandemic. Case in point: I’ve lost track of how many times I’ve thought of something and exclaimed, “That happened this year?!”

Now the new year has begun and I can hardly wrap my mind around it.

That, of course, got me thinking about novels that play with the concept of time. There’s time travel and time slips, as well as linear time vs. nonlinear time, the concept of relativity, and more. The pandemic has me relating to these explorations in a brand-new way.

The sky is the limit when it comes to our imagination around time. Time is a construct: these books are playing with or commenting on that construction. It doesn’t hurt that these premises often result in escapist reads. (You’ll be glad to know Emily St. John Mandel’s forthcoming release Sea of Tranquility, out this April, also fits the bill for this category, and I can rattle off a handle of nonfiction books that make my head spin with their theories about time and how it works. But today, fiction.)

12 novels that play with time in interesting ways

Some links (including all Amazon links) are affiliate links. More details here.

Outlander

Outlander

Author:
This time-travel romance series has 9 books to date, totaling 9,381 pages, and 300+ hours on Audible. Time travel, the Scottish highlands, romance, drama...it’s easy to get swept away. As she tells it, Gabaldon intended to write a realistic historical novel, but a modern woman kept inserting herself into the story! She decided to leave her for the time being—it's hard enough to write a novel, she'd edit her out later—but would YOU edit out Claire? I didn't think so. (Heads up for open door content and graphic torture scenes.) I was so excited when book #9 hit shelves last November, but I still haven't read it. If you have, tell us about it in comments! More info →
Buy from Amazon Kindle
Buy from Amazon
Buy from Audible.com
Buy from Libro.fm
Buy from Bookshop
Kindred

Kindred

Author:
Time travel meets slave narrative in this modern science fiction classic. When Dana, a modern Black woman from 1976, gets transported to the antebellum south in order to save one of her white ancestors, she preserves her own history. But it doesn’t end there. As she keeps getting pulled back to the past, her trips grow more and more dangerous, and Dana must figure out how to survive in a reality far more terrifying than the history books ever suggested. If you still need a push to read Kindred, listen to Volume II Episode III of One Great Book. More info →
Buy from Amazon Kindle
Buy from Amazon
Buy from Audible.com
Buy from Bookshop
The Rose Garden

The Rose Garden

This historical time travel/ historical romance has served as a gateway to the genre for many a reader. Eva heads to Cornwall after the death of her sister, looking for comfort in the home where they spent their childhood summers. Once there, she realizes the house is a portal to the 18th century and she can talk to the house’s inhabitants from back then. Not only that, she starts falling for Daniel but being with him requires staying in the past. A lovely exploration of grief and the ways we figure out where (and when) we truly belong. More info →
Buy from Amazon Kindle
Buy from Amazon
Buy from Audible.com
Buy from Barnes and Noble
Buy from Bookshop
This Is How You Lose the Time War

This Is How You Lose the Time War

In this multi-award winning novella, enemy agents develop an unlikely correspondence after one discovers a letter. Red and Blue travel through different timelines in their race to win the time war, going back to different points in history to affect the outcome. The letters may start out as a taunt between rivals but they evolve into a sapphic love story. And yet, there’s still a war going on—and only one side can win. More info →
Buy from Amazon Kindle
Buy from Amazon
Buy from Audible.com
Buy from Bookshop
Life After Life: A Novel

Life After Life: A Novel

Author:
Atkinson's creative (and sometimes, mind-bending) structure shows clearly how tiny choices in her protagonist's life (and the lives of those around her) lead to vastly different outcomes. Ursula Todd dies before taking her first breath, while another Ursula Todd is born with a piercing wail. The rest of the book follows Ursula's unique life cycle from death to life and back again, as WWII approaches. Bonus: Atkinson's novel is packed with literary references that serious literary types will appreciate. More info →
Buy from Amazon Kindle
Buy from Amazon
Buy from Audible.com
Buy from Bookshop
Recursion: A Novel

Recursion: A Novel

Author:
At the start of this sci-fi thriller, an NYPD police detective is summoned to the 41st floor of a Manhattan highrise to try and talk a woman struggling with a terrifying new condition known as False Memory Syndrome down from the edge. Meanwhile, across the country, a brilliant scientist is hard at work on her passion project, looking for a way to shield Alzheimer’s and dementia patients from the worst effects of the disease by reactivating their most important memories. Her machine will allow them to travel back and relive their own memories. But there are consequences. As the detective begins to trace the line from False Memory Syndrome to the scientist—and the sinister motivations driving the project—the stakes for not just the parties involved, but the entire world, grow ever higher. Part save-the-world thriller, part police procedural, part love story, and above all, a real brain-bender. More info →
Buy from Amazon Kindle
Buy from Amazon
Buy from Audible.com
Buy from Libro.fm
Buy from Bookshop
Time After Time: A Novel

Time After Time: A Novel

Author:
This novel inventively combines history, mystery, and love story, and Manhattanhenge. On December 5, 1937, Joe first meets Nora, a beautiful woman who seems to have appeared out of nowhere in the concourse of Grand Central Terminal. She seems a little disoriented; her dress is endearingly out of style. But she’s witty and warm and fun, and Joe is instantly smitten. There’s just one problem: when Joe tries to walk Nora home, she vanishes, seemingly into thin air. When he calls the number she gave him, well, that’s when things get really strange. Don’t worry, readers, he’ll see her again, and puzzling out the how, where, and why it’s so complicated is half the fun of reading. A must-read for fans of The Time-Traveler's Wife and The Masterpiece; with interesting parallels to A Gentleman in Moscow. More info →
Buy from Amazon Kindle
Buy from Amazon
Buy from Audible.com
Buy from Libro.fm
Buy from Bookshop
Oona Out of Order

Oona Out of Order

The premise of this caught my attention: what if one woman doesn't live her life linearly, but completely out of order, one year at a time? On the eve of her nineteenth birthday, Oona is in a good place: at a New Year's Eve party with the man she loves, counting down to both the new year and a new year in her own life. But just as the clock strikes midnight, Oona passes out—and wakes up as a 51-year-old, in an unfamiliar place, greeted by a stranger who expects this to happen, and a letter from herself explaining the wild ride she's just begun. I appreciated the creativity of this story, which reminded me of Back to the Future for theme and Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine for tone. More info →
Buy from Amazon Kindle
Buy from Amazon
Buy from Audible.com
Buy from Bookshop
The Kingdoms

The Kingdoms

Author:
A mind-bending mystery, alternate history, and queer romance rolled into one. In the new time-slip novel, Napoleon conquers England in the Battle of Trafalgar and a stone portal in the sea serves as a passageway between centuries. When Joe steps off a train in the city of Londre, 1898, he has a postcard in his pocket written in forbidden English, with a postmark dated 1805 though it inexplicably bears the image of a recently-constructed lighthouse. “Dearest Joe, come home if you remember,” says the postcard, signed simply “M.” Joe’s search for M leads him to the Outer Hebrides and back and forth through the stone portals many a time on his dangerous quest to reunite with his family without changing the course of history—or erasing his own existence. More info →
Buy from Amazon Kindle
Buy from Amazon
Buy from Audible.com
Buy from Bookshop
One Last Stop

One Last Stop

Author:
A twenty-something overcomes the impossible to find love and the family she longs for in this time-slip romance inspired by Kate & Leopold. Adrift and lonely, 23-year-old August moved to New York City with hopes of leaving the past behind and building a new life. To her great surprise, things start going well. She bumps into Jane (literally) on the Q line, developing a serious crush on the beautiful girl with the retro punk rock look. August is terrified she’ll never see Jane again, but then she does—on the Q line. It turns out Jane has been stuck on the Q line since the 1970s. If August and Jane are to get their happy ending, Jane needs to figure out how to get her unstuck—with the help of her friends, of course. Delightfully frothy and feel-good. More info →
Buy from Amazon Kindle
Buy from Amazon
Buy from Audible.com
Buy from Bookshop
An Ocean of Minutes

An Ocean of Minutes

Author:
A pandemic novel that’s also a time travel novel. Polly will do whatever it takes to save her boyfriend Frank when he catches a deadly flu virus. Enter the company TimeRaiser: agree to be their bonded laborer and they’ll send you into the future and pay for your loved one to get life-saving treatment. Polly and Frank agree to meet again in twelve years, only she gets rerouted an extra five years in a country she no longer recognizes. Not only that, she can’t find Frank anywhere. Is he still alive? She must figure out a way forward in this new life and see whether it will bring her back to her old love. More info →
Buy from Amazon Kindle
Buy from Amazon
Buy from Audible.com
Buy from Bookshop
The Time Traveler’s Wife

The Time Traveler’s Wife

In Audrey Niffenegger's cinematic debut, an art student falls in love with a librarian. So far, so good. But they met when Clare was six and Henry was 36, and they married when Clare was 23 and Henry 31. Henry travels through time, forward and back, unwillingly, unpredictably. Niffenegger explores what this jarring disruption does to a man, to a marriage, to a family. More info →
Buy from Amazon Kindle
Buy from Amazon
Buy from Audible.com
Buy from Bookshop

What are your favorite novels that do interesting things with time? Please share your picks in comments!

P.S. 25 expansive stories that follow a character across decades and 15 immersive historical fiction books about overlooked events.

P.P.S. You’ll notice that we’re deliberately keeping our book lists on the shorter side in 2022. We explained this philosophy in this post about our decision to forego a reading challenge, and in What Should I Read Next episode 313 (“Books that stand the test of time.”)

12 novels that play with the concept of time

110 comments

Leave A Comment
  1. Carole Audet says:

    I wasn’t thrilled with Diana Gabaldon’s newest “Go Tell the Bees that I Am Gone”. It was a whole lot of disparate stories/scenes that had nothing to do with each other. No plot. No cohesive story. A big disappointment after waiting 7 years. And the title is misleading. No one is gone.

    • Ann says:

      Carole, I felt like she is just building up for that last book.

      I did notice that there was some repetition and recapping (some much needed since the last book was 7 years ago). Too much Franny. Maybe she’ll play a more important role in future?

      But although this was not her best (like those first 3 books), I loved checking in with Jamie and Claire as the imminent war approaches.

      It was a bit of a tease at the end. And hard to go on reading after something almost happened.

      • Ann says:

        Not me I hope! I was purposely being vague.

        Side note: I jumped on a wait list at my library for Bees before publication & good thing I did bc I also ordered a signed first edition from The Poisoned Pen & have yet to receive it.

        There are currently 31 people on the wait list. So some enthusiasm for these books seems to have dwindled.

        I remain a fan though. I love it when Diana dies off into a tale. Nobody does it better IMO.

        Although I tend to get bored with some of the side characters. Let’s just admit it: we want Jamie and Claire 24/7 🤣

        • Ann Perrigo says:

          Go Tell the Bees was very good — (i’m still lost in my post Outlander fog) since I finished it I’ve just been wandering around, wishing I could spend more time with Jamie and Claire. It’s nice to see that they are maturing! I loved learning more details about their day to day life. Side note: this entry in the series had much less violence and gore.

        • Mary Lou DeVriendt says:

          I am currently reading Bees, getting near the end but not quite finished. It does meander quite a bit, and I’m not finding it as compelling as the earlier books. It still is very good, though. I love dipping back into the world of Jamie and Claire.

  2. Andrea Ballard says:

    Replay by Ken Grimwood. I read it in college and memories of it stick with me now, 30 years later. I especially enjoyed the aspect of returning to your own childhood – the nostalgia tempered by the boredom and lack of autonomy struck a perfect note.

  3. Cynthia Vengraitis says:

    An early (1970) and excellent time travel book is Time and Again by Jack Finney. A young man enters a government program using time travel to change the present by altering the past. The time travel vehicle is a room at the famed Dakota building in NYC. He travels back to NYC in 1882 where most of the book takes place. There is an almost as good sequel From Time to Time and a collection of short stories about time travel About Time.
    Finney is also the author the novel Invasion of the Body Snatchers.

    • Cathy says:

      This is my top choice, too! The book that started me on my love of time travel stories. Perfect combination of history, interesting setting and a little (but not too much!) charming romance.

    • Christine says:

      I remember reading and loving this book back in probably the late ’80s/early ’90s. I’ve been thinking about it again recently and wanting to revisit it…might do that this year. I never hear anyone else talk about it, though, so I’m glad you brought it up!

    • Jill says:

      I LOVED the Jack Finney books (as did my husband and my daughter)! Well written, completely plausible, and totally captivating!

  4. Virginia France says:

    The book ‘Ferney’ by James Long, deals with reincarnation and lives lived over a long period of English history. I loved this book with it’s incredible, detailed personal experiences of a huge variety of events throughout history and it’s ongoing romance. It is cleverly written and heartachingly sad at times with the disruption that the reincarnation imposes on the lives of the two main characters and all those connected with them.

  5. Deb says:

    I think The Midnight Library played around with that idea. I liked it but probably not as much as others. I read Outlander because the world was talking about it. I liked it way more than I thought I would once I got used to the idea that the main character could slip back into a different era. I rolled my eyes but then really got into the story.

    • Heidi Jones says:

      It took me years to succumb to reading Outlander, because it was always billed as “science fiction.” But once I did, I loved it. I first “read” it on audiobook with Davina Porter doing all the wonderful Scottish voices, and it was an incredibly rich experience.

      I haven’t read The Midnight Library, but it’s on my list. I did read How to Stop Time by the same author and really enjoyed it.

    • Ann says:

      I did not like Midnight Library much.

      I felt it was over-hyped for sure.

      The premise was good. And when the whole thing went down in the library, that was cool.

    • Laura says:

      The Secret Life of Addie LaRue was the first one that came to my mind. I’ve been watching to see if there is a follow up in the works.

  6. Sandy says:

    I liked both Time After Time, and The Time Traveler’s Wife. I didn’t much like The Midnight Library’s main character. I am currently reading Canadian Sylvain Neuvel’s science fiction trilogy (Sleeping Giants, Waking Gods, and Only Human) and I am in the third novel.

    • Grames says:

      Connie Willis, Doomsday Book, and her To Say Nothing of the Dog. Both fun time travel reads about a group in Oxford historians traveling back and forth in time to the middle ages plague and WWII, respectively. To Say Nothing of the Dog is a nod to Jerome K Jerome’s Three Men and a Boat—while not time travel, still a highly entertaining read.

      • Kendall says:

        Yes to Connie Willis! To Say Nothing of the Dog was the first I read and I and all my teens and then their spouses when they got married have all enjoyed it and reread it. The others mentioned by her are great as well.

      • Alicia says:

        I LOVED Doomsday Book, and it’s not really my genre. But I love the middle ages and a good plague books, so that won me over.

        • Ann Perrigo says:

          Hah! Me, too, Alicia! Time travel, Middle Ages, and plague! I mean who doesn’t love a good plague book? I loved the detail in the Middle Ages section—obviously very well researched.

  7. Pat Demilio says:

    Great list, have read and loved several of these, and added a few to my TBR! Time travel books always keep me thinking of them long after I’m done. I admit to tiring of Outlander books after about the third one, though.

    • Laura says:

      I read through the fifth one and it became such a soap opera that I put them down. But now I feel like I should know the end of the story!

      • Ann says:

        Stick with them Laura!

        Diana Gabaldon has admitted to having her ending already, she just needs to figure out how to get there.

        The first 3 were the best. Dragonfly In Amber seems to be especially a favorite among readers.

        It creates such a nostalgia and longing. I love the beginning. Then the whole being in France did not appeal to me as much.

        There are really poignant parts in all of them though.

        Fun that they are sort of genre bending. They appeal to me mostly because of the historical fiction. She does a great job researching.

  8. patricia says:

    I didn’t realize how much I like time shift fiction until I noticed I’d read most of the books on your list! I promptly added three more to my TBR pile.

    Thanks!

    • Christine says:

      Same here! I always think of myself as not loving science fiction much but it is really that I very much like certain types of science fiction and time shift stories are definitely in there as a type I enjoy.

  9. Sue Kerr says:

    If you like time travel, Regency romance, and mystery, I would recommend Julie McElwain’s Kendra Donovan series. The first volume is A Murder in Time (first 100 pages are a little slow but it definitely picks up after that). A 21st century FBI agent is transported back to 1815 England.

  10. Kris says:

    Einstein’s Dreams by Alan Lightman – a series of vignettes guided by different theories of time. It’s quite clever and poignant.

  11. Heidi Jones says:

    Ooh! I think you should add Matt Haig’s “How to Stop Time” on this list. It’s not time travel, per se, but it looks at time in a very unique way and the character’s memories of his long life jump back. So the reader gets the sense of time-hopping.

    • Amanda Fetters says:

      YES! I just finished this one the other day. It was one of those books that makes you throw all your other obligations out the window in favor of just one more chapter (or three)!

    • Kathleen Panek says:

      Loved Tom’s Midnight Garden as a middle schooler and have returned to it periodically. Also a big fan of The Doomsday Book by Connie Wilson.

  12. Jo Yates says:

    I’ve enjoyed Before the Coffee Gets Cold and Tales from the Cafe by Toshikazu Kawaguchi. There is a cafe in tokyo where, if you follow some rules, you can go back in time. You have to sit in a particular chair, the person you want to see again has to have visited the cafe, and nothing you do will change the present. Also, you have to return before the coffee gets cold or you will become a ghost. I live time travel books; favorites are the Bright Empires series by Stephen Lawhead and 11/22/63.

  13. Amy Reasoner says:

    I guess it technically doesn’t play with time, but I feel like What Alice Forgot would fit on this list–she loses 10 years of her memory, even if she doesn’t actually go back in time. After reading it, I’ve often considered what it would be like if that happened to me.

  14. Peggy Pennell says:

    I love this list and have read most of these books. My recent favorite in 2021 is The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V. E. Schwab. It starts a little slow, so stay with it but it is a great sweeping story of a woman who has lived 300 years. The audiobook is exceptional read by Julia Whelan and I recommend it.

    The other books I love are by Susanna Kearsley, all of them. They are time slip stories and each of them are so good, she can really set a scene. And again, the audiobooks are very well done.
    It appears Ferney is out of print? I can’t find it at my library or Amazon.

  15. Linda G. says:

    I recommend: ‘Time and Again’ and ‘From Time to Time’ by Jack Finney, perhaps best known for his classic ‘Invasion of the Body Snatchers’.

  16. Renea says:

    I love this genre as it dabbles more in realistic fantasy. I loved Oona and thought the structure and coming of age story was fantastic. I would include the 7 1/2 deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle as it really plays with time. Life after life is on my dnf list. No matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t get into it.

    • Mikayla says:

      Yes to Evelyn Hardcastle! In his acknowledgments the author refers to it as a “body-swapping time travel murder mystery” and I can’t think of a better description!

  17. Tienne says:

    I am absolutely the type of person who would rather read than watch BUT having watched the whole of Outlander, is it worth going back and reading? Though I loved it from the start, or at least the first 3 seasons in Scotland, I’m not sure I could go through it again…

    • Jane says:

      I would say no and yes — I am committed to reading all of the books but realize they really would benefit from editing — which the television series is accomplishing by compressing the story. Hard to recommend that anyone read the whole series unless they are really interested as the later books are LONG. Yes because the first two books are very enthralling!

    • Carole Audet says:

      Personally, I prefer the series over the books. Diana gets a few things wrong in the books that the series creators correct or improve. And, yes, a lot of the details that go on and on, often for no relevant reason, are eliminated in the series and only the major plot points that move the story forward are included.

  18. Jessica says:

    I am a little more than half through Go Tell The Bees That I Am Gone. It was just the book I needed after a stressful few months. I struggled to get into any books, but I am really enjoying being back in this world again.

  19. Ann says:

    I love this list & the P.S. as well!!

    I love Outlander. Definitely my favorite time travel series. I’ve read them all. Decidedly the first 3 in the series are the best. I read Go Tell The Bees That I Am Gone in December & at over 888 pages it really monopolized my time. But I enjoyed it for the most part. Poor Diana. I feel for her. Book 9. She’s been writing these forever! She had broken her shoulder in a fall while writing this one. I’ll eagerly await book 10 ❤️

    Excited to check out some of the other titles.

    And thank you for the reminder of No Reading Challenge. I must admit I follow a bunch of blogs and even my local library has a new challenge. One says to read a beloved author, the other suggested prompt is to read a book with a color in the title. I confess my first book of the year: The Maidens was neither of those. It was just a book I’d meant to read and finally gotten to. Book 2 was the same: Landslide, a title that was on my TBR. Both were fine.

    I am finding time to get to some of my backlist TBR books while I wait for new releases to arrive at my local library.

    I want 2022 to be a good mix of older titles with the new. I will loosely follow some challenges, but remind myself there is no pressure.

  20. Anne says:

    I have started Bees but still working my way through. Perhaps our fellow kindred spirits could refrain from spoiling the book. Anne said in her post she hasn’t read it yet.

    • Ann says:

      But Anne also said:

      “ If you have, tell us about it in comments!”

      (At the end of the section with book cover)

      Okay to comment. Just don’t give anything vital away.

      🤓

  21. Amanda Fetters says:

    I love all of your book lists, but this one has to be my favorite list yet! I’m excited to add lots of these to my TBR. Also, I’m another vote for How to Stop Time.

    • Susan V says:

      I LOVE Diane Chamberlain, and Dream Daughter is one of my favorites of hers. My other favorite of hers is Necessary Lies, but that one doesn’t have time travel in it.

  22. Janet says:

    I was very eager to read Go Tell the Bees, and was lucky enough to get my library copy right in time for Christmas vacation. I have very mixed feelings about it. After such a long wait for it, I feel like it was bound to be a little bit anti-climactic. There was a lot of recapping, which led to the page count being quite high. Some careful editing would have been quite welcome. At least there was less Brianna, which is a plus for me!

  23. Georgia says:

    I loved The Psychology of Time Travel by Kate Mascarehas — female scientists, time travel (of course), a little action, a little mystery, a little romance. The audio is great too.

  24. Jaimee says:

    I really, really liked What The Wind Knows, by Amy Harmon. One of my favorite reads from last year – definitely a unique twist on the concept of time.

    • Deborah Hubbeet says:

      Me too! What the Wind Knows took me by surprise, it was so good and a unique take!

      I made it thru the first 5 Outlander books (I went to several readings/signings with Diana at Vroman’s in Pasadena — she’s such a sweetie!) but then like all of you, too long, too many tangents etc. Editing is a great recommendation!

  25. Marilyn K. says:

    I read the latest Outlander book & really enjoyed it. Not the best one maybe, but still very good, with clues & possible references to what may happen in the future, & the title was part of that. And Gabaldon’s “acknowledgements” are so fun to read. House on the Strand by Daphne DuMaurier (1969!), is an excellent time travel novel. Not dated at all.

  26. Carrie Padgett says:

    I just finished Overseas by Beatriz Williams which I quite enjoyed. It was her debut and a bit different for her. I like Outlander. I’m only partway through the second. I liked The Midnight Library. I really enjoyed The True Lies of Rembrandt Stone series by David James Warren. (It’s actually 3 writers, Susan May Warren, David Warren, and James Rubart.) 6 fairly short books that are each stand alones, but work together to tell an over-arching story.
    I’m going to add Oona and a few others to my TBR stack!

  27. Sandy Hoenecke says:

    The book that started me on my time travel reading journey was Lady of Hay by Barbara Erskine. Because of that, it will remain one of my favourites along with The Mirror by Marlys Millhiser and Replay by Ken Grinwood. Very many of the others mentioned I have read and I have added some new titles to my ‘possibles’ list. Thank you.

  28. Ann says:

    Sorry, but to address the question of should you read the Outlander books having seen the tv series?

    And Anne, don’t worry I am not giving anything away 😬

    Just to say my intro to Outlander went something like this: I was searching for a romance & I think I googled “best romances” & Outlander popped kept popping up.

    Honestly, and it seems hard to believe now, I was not hooked at first. I began reading Outlander and it did not initially “grab me.”

    Then the series started up & did peak my interest. And what I did was sort of supplement the series by reading the books. IMO books are almost always better. You get to flesh out the stories & get more of what you love.

    The series is well done, and I agree with the comment that some of the books could use a little editing. But on the other hand “if it ain’t broke don’t fix it 😫! I often wonder if some of what they do does not drive Diana Gabaldon nuts! This seems to be the case more and more as they revise the stories to attempt to compress them for time-saving/budget sake.

    So I agree yes & no. Just wanted to share how I ended up getting into Outlander. I enjoy both.

    And there are many instances where the tv series strays from the original.

    I love most of the series cast. Brianna kinda bugs me. And although the young Ian actor is a nice guy, I might have pictured someone else.

    Jamie and Claire are perfection.

    Diana has already written several Lord John Grey books and has talked about writing Master Raymond book and a prequel about Jamie’s parents.

    Sorry, I did not mean to hijack this post & go off on an Outlander rant.

    I highly recommend reading all the books. I think for those that love them, as lengthy as they are, we enjoy getting more of these beloved characters. And I second the motion that in these times we live in, it feels good to be in that world!

  29. Jane says:

    Dear Anne,

    Great list. I’d also include Connie Willis – Doomsday book and To say nothing of the dog

    – Black out and All clear

  30. Ann says:

    Currently reading Razorblade Tears & folks, I may abort the mission/abandon ship & do some Time Traveling instead 😆

    This list has me so inspired & I am loving the other recommendations from everyone too!!

  31. Candace says:

    My first time travel book was Green Darkness by Anya Seton and it has stayed with me for many years! Also House on the Strand from back in the day. When I read these, the time bending genre didn’t have the popularity it does today. So glad there are now so many choices!

  32. Linda Sue Ryan says:

    Bid Time Return by Richard Matheson. This is the book they made the movie Somewhere in Time from. My all time favorite movie.

    • Ann says:

      Linda, visiting Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island is definitely on my bucket list!

      I read the book as well. ❤️

      Thanks for remembering that one 😍

  33. Kat says:

    I love this genre! For good ones not yet mentioned – The Rise and Fall of Dodo by Neal Stephenson and Nicola Galland. The Little Book by Seldon Edwards. Time after Time by Allen Appel. In kid’s fiction, besides Tom’s Midnight Garden, there’s Playing Beattie Bow by Ruth Park and The Ghosts by Antonia Barber. And I heartily endorse recommendations of The Time Traveler’s Wife, the Connie Willis time travel books and All our Wrong Yesterdays by Elan Mastai.

  34. Robin says:

    Glad to see Candace mentioned The House on the Strand. An oldie but a goodie. Loved the writing. Parts of it haunt the back of my mind at regular intervals.

  35. Mindy says:

    The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August by Claire North (Excellent! Really!)

    Before the Coffee Gets Cold by Toshikazu Kawaguchi (Short. Very interesting. Strong sense of place.)

    Every Day by David Levithan (Honorable mention)

  36. Ann says:

    BTW, I agree with the new release treadmill observation on your previous post Anne.

    A reading resolution for 2022 for me will be not to get so caught up on it.

    I made it to the library & was able to get a copy of Kindred & The Orchardist.

    I also could not resist and picked up a copy of Anne Tyler’s A Spool of Blue Thread. Although I am going to partly go with your “no reading challenge” concept, I am going to use some prompts from my local library & other blog’s prompts, in this case Rachel Booklist Queen. The library said pick a book with a color in the title & Rachel said “by an author you love.” So this book fit the bill on both counts.

    I also got The Yellow House: A Memoir (2019 National Book Award Winner). Just as a back up on the color prompt. I somehow missed that one in 2019.

    So not a challenge challenge, just prompts to help me along. No pressure. Reading should be a pleasure! The time travel prompt was a brilliant one and will keep me occupied for the unforeseeable future, while I make a point of reading some past titles (see what I did there 😉).

    I got some great news this afternoon that will allow me to pursue my reading goals. I received a jury summons earlier in the month & when I called to receive instructions I got a message that I was dismissed!!!!! Best news I have had in a while. I have a bulge at L4/5 & was absolutely dreading this all month. Not to mention Omicron floating around.

    Phew!! 😅

  37. Terri says:

    Highly recommend HERE AND NOW AND THEN by Mike Chen, about a time-traveling secret agent from 2142, stranded in the 1990s and now has the chance to return to his “old” life, at the expense of his “new” life and family.

    THE YEAR WE TURNED FORTY by Liz Fenton, about a group of friends turning 50 get a reset to the year they all turned 40 for a chance to do it all over (differently?).

    Not technically time travel, but HOW TO STOP TIME by Matt Haig features a character who ages at a fraction of the rate of the average human, and as a result, lives across centuries.

    Also 11/22/63 by Stephen King.

  38. Mary says:

    I thought The Starless Sea was well-done and non-linear. Not really time travel, but an interesting way to play with time. I’m still thinking about it and finished it months ago!

  39. Sarah says:

    ‘How to Stop Time’ by Matt Haig is an incredible story about time, only finally resolving through… Well, I’ll say no more!

  40. Christie says:

    I really like The Man in the Empty Suit by Sean Ferrell. Our main character attends a party every year on his birthday with all his other birthday selves (so with his 15-year-old self and his 37-year-old self and so forth). I can’t remember the age of the narrator, but he is getting close to the oldest self at the party and there’s a murder to solve. Considering only his selves are at the party, there’s a lot to figure out there, and he’s been studying the problem for years. Every year he sees another view of the party adding to his complete picture.

  41. Indiana Gigi says:

    I just finished Lisa Jewell’s The Truth About Melody Browne and found it an outstanding novel that fits this theme. Melody is a single thirty-something mother who can remember nothing in her life before the age of 11. A visit to a hypnotist suddenly opens up a window to a life she lived but cannot remember. Melody is a heroine you will find yourself rooting for as she gradually pieces together the puzzle of her past. I think this may be my favorite Lisa Jewell novel. Very reminiscent of Liane Moriarty’s What Alice Forgot (another fave of mine).

  42. Jenn says:

    Thank you for this list! I love these types of books that ‘play’ with time! I’m going to spend some time with this post.

  43. Gayle says:

    Currently reading Eternal Life by Dara Horn about a woman born in Biblical times who lives forever and needs to confront the changes in the world. Not something I would have picked up on my own, but a very interesting concept and well-written.

  44. Christina says:

    This is definitely an OLD book–but did anyone read Lightning, by Dean Koontz? Probably my first book by him and it had a definite “time traveler” plot. LOVED the book–you absolutely get pulled in.

  45. Ann says:

    I just watched Somewhere In Time on Tubi, with a daughter born in 1983, who’d never seen it!
    I must say this was a case where I enjoyed the movie better than the book it was based on: Bid Time Return.
    It was so good seeing handsome Christopher Reeve and Christopher Plummer.
    The setting at the Grand Hotel is stunning.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.