This proved a very entertaining and interesting novel. It is cleverly set in two time periods (now both in the past, but at the time of writing one was in the future - this adds an unintended dimension to the plot)with the later time period trying to contact the earlier one in order to try to head off a global catastrophe. Paradoxes of interfering with the past are cleverly dealt with and some of the science was really ingeniously woven into the plot. If you are interested in this kind of technical science fiction, go for it.
If you were in a hospital bed recovering from surgery, or in an airplane with nothing better to do, and you wanted something quite undemanding to listen to, then this audiobook might well qualify. The story moves a fairly quick pace, and the plot is reasonably novel, but do not expect much thought provoking content.
The book is set in the not too distant future (mid 21st century) where time travel has been invented and is available to academics (at Oxford, at least) to allow personal exploration of previous times. Amazingly, despite this quantal technological sophistication, the author has failed to anticipate the use of mobile phones or any other personal communication device (I suppose the book was written in the 1980s) and so the protagonists still have to resort to fumbling in their pockets for change to use in the always-hard-to-locate payphones! (Sometimes a mobile phone is wheeled in on a trolley!). The academics resort to petty squabbling over who is the best user of the time travel device (more reminiscent of Junior High School than Oxford colleges). And the heroine, who ends up beiing stranded in the 14th century, is an undergraduate who convinces her tutor that this is a good idea solely because she has "always been interested in the Middle Ages"! I don't think so! Making her a post graduate student engaged in Ph.D. research would perhaps have made me less likely to snort with ridicule.
If I had started this book as one to read as opposed to listen to, I think I would have given up before 50 pages. But as something to distract me while doing something else, it ain't so bad.
I was first introduced to the Forsyte Sage through the 1960s BBC TV adaptation. This audiobook brings it all flooding back. A wonderful portrayal of late Victorian & Edwardian England. It is true that the opening chapters introduce a vast cast of characters, but the tale settles down and they disentangle themselves with skilled assistance of the narrator who is able to play each character quite distinctly. Highly recommended.
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