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The Time Traveler's Wife
The Time Traveler's Wife
Author: Audrey Niffenegger
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...  more »
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ISBN-13: 9780156029438
ISBN-10: 015602943X
Publication Date: 5/27/2004
Pages: 560
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.

4 stars, based on 5299 ratings
Publisher: Harvest Books
Book Type: Paperback
Other Versions: Hardcover, Audio Cassette, Audio CD
Reviews: Member | Amazon | Write a Review

Top Member Book Reviews

reviewed The Time Traveler's Wife on + 53 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 63
This is now on my list of my all time favorite books. Along with "The English Patient" and "Girl with a Pearl Earring", the quality of language and lyrical writing are a joy to read - you don't want it to end. The unique premise is thought provoking and the characters you come to know and care about - with an ending that is tender, beautiful and tragic. I never cry over books, but the ending of this one really got to me. Sorry, I'm taking my copy out of circulation as it's staying in my permanent collection and I'm recommending it highly to all of my friends.

I can wait for Niffenegger's next book. If she continues to write this well, I'll be a fan for life.
jowy avatar reviewed The Time Traveler's Wife on + 18 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 46
Definitely one of the best books I've ever read. True, the concept of the time-traveling takes a while to understand, and I don't think you fully do understand it, but I believe that's the whole point.

It truly is a wonderful and unique story. Such a tearjerker as well. Amazing amazing book.

If you start to read this and don't understand it, don't give it up right away. Give it a little while and you'll start to understand it and enjoy it.
reviewed The Time Traveler's Wife on + 5 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 26
This book is gorgeous! The story is a magnificent and unique story of, the time traveler's wife. It is a spiraling tale of two lives lived independently and shared. Their time, their past, their futures overlap. And yet, the husband lives in a world all his own with no control over when or where he is at any given moment. It is a fresh perspective on life, love, and cause and effect. This is book is a rare treasure, and a first novel at that! Kudos, Audrey! I cannot wait for your next book.
reviewed The Time Traveler's Wife on + 17 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 24
This is a book I can read over and over again. I've waited for the movie to come out, but it seems that it never made the screen. The story is fascinating, funny and heart wrenching. It grabs the readers interest, and seems to glue itself to the reader's soul. This is truly one of those "I can't put it down" books. If you are lucky enough to nab a copy of this classic, do it!
reviewed The Time Traveler's Wife on + 6 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 22
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. The premise and style is fresh, which added to the experience of reading it. I think the author's experience as an artist added to the richness of the story. The sections dealing with making the paper and artwork fascinated me.
Two thumbs up!
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reviewed The Time Traveler's Wife on + 12 more book reviews
Really didn't think that I would be able to get into this book with all of the dates jumping back and forth but I tried to not focus so much on the dates and just read the book. I LOVED IT this was the sweetest book I wanted to cry all the way through the last part of it just how much two people can love one another is a wonderful sight to see.
reviewed The Time Traveler's Wife on + 3 more book reviews
This was a fabulous book. The plot is original, the characters are real, and the writing "sucks" you in quickly. I found myself considering the story and its elements long after I'd put it down. Great Sci-Fi and a great love story. It's been a long time since I read a 500 page book in less than two weeks. It's a book I'll read more than once.
However, some "romance" scenes and extra use of the F-word will keep me from handing this one to my sixteen year-old.
reviewed The Time Traveler's Wife on
The book was a little confusing and sort of hard to follow but I'm still glad I read it.I was curious after reading other reviews but it was ok.
reviewed The Time Traveler's Wife on
Plenty to think about, though a pretty easy read.
stocktonmalonefan avatar reviewed The Time Traveler's Wife on + 58 more book reviews
It took me awhile to get used the shifting storyline from present to past to future with Henry as well as the shifting POV between the two main characters--but I did enjoy this book. If you like time traveling stories or a good love story (with the constant tinge of sadness always in the background) than you will enjoy this book as well.
reviewed The Time Traveler's Wife on + 118 more book reviews
Fascinating story!
kat204 avatar reviewed The Time Traveler's Wife on + 26 more book reviews
I really enjoyed this book. It's great, but you have to listen to it. No intruptions. Like small kids :)
glbirch avatar reviewed The Time Traveler's Wife on + 205 more book reviews
I really enjoyed this story and I didn't realize it was an abridged version until after I had finished it. The only issue I had was that there was a lot of language (the f-word, the c--- word, yikes) which is easier to overlook on paper than coming out of my iPod! There were some really graphic sex scenes, but the only one that bothered me was NOT between the time traveler and his wife! If you liked the movie, you will probably enjoy the book. It is a sweet story.
Yoni avatar reviewed The Time Traveler's Wife on + 327 more book reviews
Couldn't put it down...I was sad when it ended. Surely makes you think.
reviewed The Time Traveler's Wife on + 9 more book reviews
This is a great read for anyone facinated about the idea of time travel.
reviewed The Time Traveler's Wife on + 105 more book reviews
I saw this book on many lists over the years since it was printed, but I wasn't particularly interested in reading it. At first I mixed it up with The Mapmaker's Wife, a book I very much liked. When I realized my mistake I was still in no hurry to read it. But when it recently became available on paperbackswap I figured why not. I have so many credits there.

It's heavy. 536 pages. I don't mind heavy books, especially if I am absorbed in it. It can be a real pleasure to live within the pages of a book for more than a day or so. In this case that did not happen.

The story is told through the words of Henry DeTamble and Clare Abshire. Henry has an unusual condition: he travels through time. He has no control over when he will suddenly be ripped from one time to another, or when he will return. Nothing he wears or that is not a part of him travels with him, so he always lands at his destination in the nude.

And so it is that he is found by six-year-old Clare, in the woods near her home. She is young and therefore more willing to accept his story than adults would be. The two become friends over the years, as he pops in on her from different ages, randomly. The two become attached, but Henry is careful not to take advantage of her. Even so, he recognizes that she is at something of a disadvantage in this relationship.

Still, the two know they are meant for each other and they do eventually marry. Henry, who works as a librarian, continues to disappear and reappear and sometimes even meets himself at another age. His condition puts him at a disadvantage in several ways even as it provides the occasional advantage.

Henry and Clare, alternating, in short blurbs, describe what is happening, each section a different day and instance of time travel, except when they are both in the present. Thus we are swinging back and forth with them, which can be dizzying. I expect this method of presenting the story is meant to help us feel what it is like for the two of them.

It's an interesting premise and suggests many different scenarios. I felt many were included here, maybe more than necessary. I wanted the best for the pair yet never really grew to care that much about them. There were interesting moments, particularly when Henry had to engage in some criminal activity just to get some clothes on or some food in his stomach, and his sanguinity in the face of this is curious. Does he never worry about getting caught? Apparently not. For me, in any case, there was not enough to engage my interest through the whole drawn-out story, and toward the end I was impatient for it to be done.
wiltinglilly avatar reviewed The Time Traveler's Wife on + 33 more book reviews
I loved this book! It was interesting and definitely kept me wanting more and more. As the main character is a time traveler, the book is not in chronological order, but I did not find it difficult to keep things in order while I was reading it. It's an adorable love story that I most definitely recommend.
reviewed The Time Traveler's Wife on + 18 more book reviews
A good book with a great plot device. Stick with it a while and it will make sense. Adult themes so definitely not for your 13 year old reader.
reviewed The Time Traveler's Wife on
it was too much back and forth in times.
It got to be confusing the more you read.
knightreader avatar reviewed The Time Traveler's Wife on + 92 more book reviews
an enchanting novel, beauifully crafted and as dazzlingy imaginative as it is dizzingly romantic.
a most untraditional love story which left me waiting for a second novel.
great book,one or two day read
reviewed The Time Traveler's Wife on + 6 more book reviews
Loved it! This is one you can't put down.
reviewed The Time Traveler's Wife on + 3 more book reviews
Great and unique storyline

Book Wiki

Henry DeTamble (Primary Character)
Clare Abshire DeTamble (Primary Character)
Charisse (Major Character)
Kimy (Major Character)
Gomez (Jan Gomolinski) (Major Character)