Book Review: About Time by Michael Murphey

abouttimepicWow, this book was not what I expected.  Again, one of my favorite genres, mash-up.  Part adventure, part romance, part philosophy and of course, sci-fi.  Very funny while being very philosophical at the same time.  Here is the synopsis: About Time  is the story of how the frontier of time travel was shaped by theoretical physics, lust  and the questionable ethics of attempting to manipulate the histories of entire universes for the profit and amusement of one small planet. Set initially in the year 2043, when fossil fuels have finally been replaced with hydrogen-based energy, a global consortium of governments and corporate conglomerates undertakes a massive and secret program to travel through time. Their goal, of course, is to manipulate the past or future for profit or military advantage, and the power and abundance of this new energy source ultimately makes travel into the past possible.  Efforts to explore this newest frontier are complicated, however, by the libidos and consciences of the people who are chosen to be the first Travelers through time. Further difficulties occur when the laws of physics place the time travelers in the past of parallel universes instead of our own. Rather than a pure flight of fancy, the novel is very much science based. The novel explores the conflict between pure science and the application of science for profit or political gain, and uses humor to lift the its science beyond a dry treatise and keep the reader engaged.  Because its science is plausible (for the most part) About Time  will appeal beyond the Scifi genre to readers of general fiction and adventure as well. Come meet the lushious Sheila Wilkerson, the dangerous Marta Hamilton, the bewildered Marshall Grissom, the confusing Naomi Hu, the reprobate Elvin Detwyler, the clueless Frank Altman, the blackguard Andrew Gormley, the devious Leonard Rose and a host of other characters who populate a secret facility buried beneath the Arizona desert. This book reminds me of 11/22/63 by Stephen King.  Apparently the past is obdurate.  Or at least whatever version of the past you happen to be projected into. First, let me say that this book is seriously funny.  I usually read at night while my husband (who wakes up at the crack of dawn) is sleeping next to me.  The first half of the book I was laughing so hard, I had to go into another room. There is a running penis joke that is just too much to mention here.  As well as a classic “who’s on first” gag.  And then there is the glimpse of what the future is like with regard to television shows:  “Little Hookers, Big World, a show about reformed midget prostitutes who are now part-time bounty hunters and custome motorcycle builders who scream at each other a lot.” The author even makes Einstein funny:  “With a physicist’s sense of poetry, Einstein called this phenomenon space-time.  (Come on, Albert.  Get a thesaurus! Space-Time? Why not Spime or Spam, or…or…Fred?  Anything?  Anything? Ah well..so much for a sense of romance and adventure among the physicists.)” This is not a dry read about physics and time travel.  Occasionally some parts did make my eyes cross, but the character development, plot development and humor kept my attention.  It is more adventure than sci fi with a twist of deception and typical political/corporate meddling. I truly enjoyed all 300+ pages.  Recommended for anyone that likes humor mixed in with their science and enjoys a good story.

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Trackback: Amanda’s Favs for 2013 — Part One | The Eclectic Bookworm
  2. Trackback: Book Review: Schrodinger’s Gat by Robert Kroese | The Eclectic Bookworm

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