What would you do if you suddenly found out time travel was possible? For Andrew Harrington this question was easy. He would go back in time and stop Jack the Ripper from killing Marie Kelly, the prostitute he had fallen in love with. What sort of events might have to line up for such a thing to be possible. The Map of Time may provide you with the answers.
I was not quite sure what this one was going to be about when I started reading it. I make it a habit to read the blurbs and teasers when I am deciding to purchase or review a book, but not again until after I have finished reading. I want the book to be fresh and not go into it with any preconceptions. Being that this one starts out with an attempted suicide, a hidden affair with a prostitute and then time travel, I found myself wondering just where could this possibly be going?
The Map of Time is laid out in three sections, each of which is a story of it's own, but still with a connecting theme throughout. H.G. Wells, as a character, is the connecting thread in these stories. The overall mystery in the book, is whether time travel is possible, and if so, how? Time travel has fascinated readers of science fiction since the release of Wells' The Time Machine. I think that is what really hooked my with this one.
The book is quite wordy, however. I am usually not a skimmer, but I found myself breaking that rule on more than one occasion. Perhaps my reading preference has been skewed by the short paragraphs and extensive dialogue found in today's thrillers, but I could not help but feel a little overwhelmed when a paragraph would span more than a page. Still, the story was compelling enough to hold my interest.
The book was translated from the original Spanish by Nick Caistor. I have to say he did a great job. If I had not known it was a translation, I would have accepted that it was a work by an English author without question.
I enjoyed reading this book. I found it to be a nice mixture of science fiction, mystery, romance and a little history. This was a pleasant surprise for my summer reading.
Felix J Palma was born Sanlucar de Barrameda, a city in Cadiz province in southern Spain. He published his first novel, The Ant that Wanted to be an Astronaut, in 2001. His most recent novel is The Map of Time. The novel has been awarded the Prize XL Ateneo de Sevilla and is being published in 30 countries.
I received a review copy of this book from the publisher.
The Map of Time by Felix J Palma
Publication Date: June 28, 2011