For Oxford student Kivrin, traveling back to the 14th century is more than the culmination of her studies - it's the chance for a wonderful adventure. For Dunworthy, her mentor, it is cause for intense worry about the thousands of things that could go wrong. When an accident leaves Kivrin trapped in one of the deadliest eras in human history, the two find themselves in equally gripping - and oddly connected - struggles to survive.
Deftly juggling stories from the 14th and 21st centuries, Willis provides thrilling action - as well as an insightful examination of the things that connect human beings to each other.
©1992 Connie Willis; (P)2000 Recorded Books
"Ms. Willis displays impressive control of her material; virtually every detail introduced in the early chapters is made to pay off as the separate threads of the story are brought together." (The New York Times Book Review)
"A stunning novel that encompasses both suffering and hope....The best work yet from one of science fiction's best writers." (The Denver Post)
Time travel books certainly aren't new but this one was special. Initially I thought it was going to be too long but it had you really caring about the present day people as well as all the charaters the time traveler met. I'm ready to listen to the next one.
Spoiler Alert : Losing the whole family to the plague and the strength of the priest wiht to the end.
I think she helped keep your interest. As I've said its a long book but its never boring and I think her narration was part of that.
No, It was just a very enjoyable book.
I will definetly be listening to the series.
Checking out Brandon Sanderson's work
As the first of the series - that I read in the wrong order, this was great. The reading was excellent and the story still great. I really recommend this audio book.
I loved the characters, the interplay between 13th century plague and a modern quarantined outbreak. Nephew Colin provided welcome comic relief. It also seems to me as if the imperious, bossy old lady everyone is scrambling to avoid is a stock Willis character. Will need to read more of her books to see if this trope holds true. The details about medieval life were fantastic. I really felt like I was "there".
Definitely Colin, and I usually hate pesky, worldly-wise moppets. But he really worked for me.
She has a very pleasing voice and brought Kivirin to life as an almost angelic presence, which is how some of the contemps came to view her.
Without spoiling the plot, I would not care to say.
The second half of this book does take quite a grim turn, but ultimately, I think the presence of Colin provides enough buoyancy to carry you along to a fairly satisfactory ending.
It might be me, but I can't get farther than 15 minutes into this 60-hour odyssey without falling fast asleep. Ms. Sterlin's voice is soothing and hypnotic. She coaxes somnolence from me at every turn. The story is hard to follow when it's so disjoint. It must be good...it won awards.
not very dynamic
I bought after reading a review of outlander where someone recommended this as a good time travel novel, Doomsday have many boring parts specially in the present for the first half of the book, the past always interesting, it is hard to tell the voices apart. I work in a large corporation the history in the present made me feel right back at work trying to get approvals from an accountant - not pleasant.
slow story development
yes, good change of voice for different characters
good historical elements
good concepts are ruined by the slow story development and tedious repition of thoughts and worries of the main character.
The historical aspect of this book is awesome. The telling of life in a village in England in the 1300's puts you in the time and place. But the plot. My goodness. It took way to long to get to the point. Even with character development, it shouldn't take 16 hours for the character to figure out whats going on.
The historical description of life in a small village in England during the mid 1300's.
Average, adequate, ok.
This book would have been a lot more enjoyable if they cut out about 10 hours. And this is a person who had no problems with the length of "The Company. All in all, I have no idea how this book won any science fiction award. It must have been a slow year. I found this story to be a well of untapped potential.
I really enjoyed to experience of traveling to the past and seeing an example of what life was like several hundred years ago. A fun romp through history.
I absolutely detested the scenes from the future history department / time travel people. They were silly characters, almost all incompetent (or unconscious). You could have cut out half of what was going on and still made the point. It slowed down the plot and tried to inject mystery and suspense in a way that simply bored me.
And many of the characters were clearly there to be funny. But they were so over the top that I found it detracted from the story. Personally, I wasn't in the mood for a serious book with silly characters, just as I've not been in the mood for a silly book with serious characters.
This is my first book by Connie Willis. I might try another one of the authors books. Her style was generally good and subtle humour appreciated. The comic relief characters I found irritating, however.
Jenny Sterlin's job of reading the book was unimpressive. She talked extremely slowly and her pauses between each character, each piece of dialogue, each sentence was to long. I found myself continually annoyed waiting for her to say something, or finish what she was saying.
I decided to listen to this book because of the awards it has won and all the great reviews. I definitely enjoyed it, and I like the premise of a time-travelling history department. The author obviously did a fair amount of research into the middle ages, church rituals, ancient languages and such, which I found interesting. However, I’m a stickler for sci-fi plots and stories set in the future to be believable, and so a few things in this story bugged me. I can definitely forgive the author for not foreseeing a world of mobile phones and the internet, so those things didn't interfere much with the story, for me. However, I think the author could have benefitted from interviewing administrative personnel at a university. The actions of these characters provided some of the least believable content. WARNING: a few SPOILERS follow: A university with no critical incident plan? A history department that no doubt would be the best in the world, considering their technology, and yet seemed to contain only about four staff members? A missing Head of the Department that never appears in the story? OK, forget Head of the Department – where was the President or Vice Chancellor of the University? A complicated, state-of-the-art, potentially life-threatening time-travelling lab, and only one person on location who knows how to operate it? Where is the full-time Lab Manager? Where is the required training, or at least awareness training, for the other personnel and professors? Where is the operation manual for others to consult? The explanation of “it’s Christmas time and everything is shut down” only excused so much of this for me. If a life-threatening situation arose at a real university, there would be all hands on deck! Implement Critical Incident and Media response plan! Emergency staff meetings! Certainly the staff would never send a barely-recovered staff member back… they could phone one of the other dozens of History or admin staff to see who else might want to help, no? I did enjoy this book and did find myself listening frequently, wanting to find out what was going to happen. But the actions and dialogue of the University staff were frustrating. Nevertheless I may listen to more of this author’s work, as I do find the premise interesting… and maybe in book two, the History department gets its wake-up call?
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