After who knows how many years, I have finally read The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger from start to finish! There were a couple times in years past when I’d pick up the book and read about 100 pages in, but then stop. Usually some other book came along to distract me. This time, I made it!
The Time Traveler’s Wife is a very unusual love story for the simple fact that one of the main characters, Henry, is able to time travel. Henry never chooses to time travel – it just happens, and he most often finds himself somewhere in his past, and occasionally in his future. While time traveling, he meets his (future for her, but present for him) wife, Clare, as a young girl. He visits her as she grows up and she learns that she will marry him, but this is one of the few pieces of information Henry will give Clare in relation to her future. Finally, Clare meets Henry in his own present and although she has known him her entire life, he has no idea who she is. They eventually fall in love and get married, and the story follows their efforts at a normal life despite Henry’s random disappearances into time.
Despite the numerous attempts at starting the book, this was one of the best books I’ve read because of its originality. Some people may not like the science fiction/time travel aspect of the story, and while I’m by no means a sci-fi fan, I loved the time travel. I think it really helped to show how strong the relationship was between Clare and Henry. If the story were to start at the point at which Henry and Clare met, it would be hard to understand why exactly Clare was so in love with Henry right away, but with Henry’s visits from the future, it only makes sense that Clare has the feelings she does. I also felt that the time travel was a great form of foreshadowing, and it kept me reading to find out more about certain events that were hinted at. Like I said, this story was so original and very refreshing because of how different it was from other love stories I’ve read. Even if you’re not a science fiction fan, I’d still say to give it a try. Hopefully it won’t take you three tries like me – but if it does, you’ll be glad you persevered!