The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger

76%

34 Critic Reviews

Although this book must have been a monster to write, it is strung together so wonderfully that I actually felt that Clare and Henry could well be a real life couple out there somewhere.
-Guardian

Synopsis

Passionately in love, Clare and Henry vow to hold onto each other and their marriage as they struggle with the effects of Chrono-Displacement Disorder, a condition that casts Henry involuntarily into the world of time travel.
 

About Audrey Niffenegger

See more books from this Author
Audrey Niffenegger is a visual artist and a professor in the Interdisciplinary Book Arts MFA Program at the Columbia College Chicago Center for Book and Paper Arts, where she teaches writing, letterpress printing, and fine edition book production.
 
Published January 1, 2003 by Knopf Canada. 536 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction, Romance, Religion & Spirituality, Science Fiction & Fantasy, Travel, Professional & Technical, Action & Adventure, History. Fiction
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Critic reviews for The Time Traveler's Wife
All: 34 | Positive: 29 | Negative: 5

Kirkus

Above average
on May 20 2010

Mainstreamed time-travel romance, cleverly executed and tastefully furnished if occasionally overwrought: a first from fine newcomer Niffenegger.

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Publishers Weekly

Excellent
on Aug 04 2003

It is a fair tribute to her skill and sensibility to say that the book leaves a reader with an impression of life's riches and strangeness rather than of easy thrills.

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Guardian

Good
Reviewed by NewYorkGirl on Oct 11 2011

Although this book must have been a monster to write, it is strung together so wonderfully that I actually felt that Clare and Henry could well be a real life couple out there somewhere.

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Guardian

Good
Reviewed by Megan Clarke on Aug 22 2011

...it flits between decades, seasoning the story with nostalgic scenes from the 1990s as it goes. Although it can occasionally be confusing when Henry pops up in different places at different times, the characterisation more than makes up for momentary bewilderment.

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Guardian

Below average
Reviewed by Natasha Walter on Jan 30 2004

By the time Niffenegger begins to tune up the violins for the swoony sweet ending you knew was on the cards, the magic has taken over from the realism, to the cost of the book's potential impact.

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Blog Critics

Good
Reviewed by Diane Kristine Wild on Feb 13 2006

he Time Traveler’s Wife is a touching and compulsively readable...tale...The book portrays both a romantic and harsh view of time travel...

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Book Reporter

Good
Reviewed by Melissa Morgan on Nov 22 2010

THE TIME TRAVELER'S WIFE is a highly original work from a seriously talented author. Niffenegger weaves her timelines with ease, never confusing the reader or leaving loose ends. She more than earns her place as a writer to watch.

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About.com Bestsellers

Above average
Reviewed by Erin Collazo Miller on Jan 17 2013

I highly recommend The Time Traveler's Wife for anyone who wants a compelling read that will give you much to think about and feel.

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Boston.com

Above average
Reviewed by Judith Maas on Dec 08 2003

"The Time Traveler's Wife" can be an exasperating read, but as a love story it has its appeal: Refreshingly, the novel portrays long-term commitment as something lively and exuberant rather than dutiful and staid, evoking both the comforts it brings us and the tribulations we learn to live with.

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Chamber Four

Above average
Reviewed by KATHLEEN DACEY on May 30 2011

At its core The Time Traveler’s Wife is a lonely book. It would be the perfect companion—hopeful, but isolated—for myshort, wretched life on the island.

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BookDragon

Good
Reviewed by Terry Hong on Oct 02 2010

Above all, this is one stupendous love story. But not only the love between two soulmates – Clare and Henry – but also the indescribable bond between parent and child … Henry and his mother, Clare and her mother, and eventually Alba and her parents.

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Teen Ink

Excellent
Reviewed by Stephanie Michelle on May 22 2014

...the point is that The Time Traveler's Wife is literally one of the best books of this century, and certainly of the decade that we most recently put to rest. Read it: I know you'll love it.

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Yahoo! Voices

Above average
Reviewed by Miss Taniq on Dec 29 2009

...The Time Traveler's Wifechallenges the reader to think about his/her own values and views on marriage, love, loss, gene therapy and life in general.

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Yahoo! Voices

Above average
Reviewed by Steven Moneyworth on Aug 13 2009

Although it is, at times, complex and difficult, The Time Traveler's Wife is a worthwhile read on the border of sci-fi and romantic genres.

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Yahoo! Voices

Good
Reviewed by Carrie P on Jul 31 2009

Niffenegger was able to hold my attention for 518 pages over approximately four weeks. I absolutely loved this book and I looked forward every night to reading a few pages before I fell asleep.

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EzineArticles

Good
Reviewed by Joanne P on May 22 2014

If I had to describe this story in one word, that word would be 'moving'. On one level, it is a very clever telling of an excellent story. On a deeper level, it is a valuable reminder of the fragility of our lives and the virtues of living in the moment - carpe diem!

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Curled Up

Good
Reviewed by Luan Gaines on Jan 01 2003

Audrey Niffenegger has not written a traditional romance made a bit more curious by Henry's penchant for time travel. Instead Niffenegger has grounded her tale in flesh and blood reality. Henry and Clare's lifelong love affair does not come without a cost, for nothing worth having is easily won.

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Things Mean a Lot

Good
Reviewed by Ana S on Jan 04 2009

The last 30-40 pages made me cry like a baby. I had a headache for hours afterwards. What happens is incredibly sad, but there’s also so much tenderness. Especially in the very last scene.

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The Book Smugglers

Below average
on Jan 18 2008

The more I think about this book, the less I like it. Simply put: it creeped me out (and NOT in a good way)...Save your money. If you want to feel exploited and emotionally drained, wait for the movie version to come out.

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The Blue Bookcase

Good
Reviewed by Christina on May 22 2014

I really liked and related to both Henry and Clare and their interesting, full-bodied selves. I also enjoyed all the pretentious references to French and German literati and 90's music.

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Literate Housewife

Good
Reviewed by Jennifer on Apr 10 2007

The Time Traveler’s Wife flowed well and maintained my interest throughout. I did find the ending somewhat hokie, but the theme of waiting was followed through to the end.

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Lit Lovers

Above average
Reviewed by Molly Lundquist on Oct 01 2006

Many readers I've talked with love this book and see it as a poignant story about enduring love in the face of a debilitating condition, much like a chronic illness that besets some couples in real life. I agree.

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Sophisticated Dorkiness

Good
Reviewed by Kim on Sep 22 2009

My favorite part was after Henry and Claire met in Clarie’s chronology because I thought it was fun to see the way Henry grew into the man Claire was in love with.

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Vulpus Libris

Below average
Reviewed by Mary on Apr 12 2008

...I realized that the main thing I learned from this novel is just how boring, self-centered and thoroughly irritating people who are madly in love are to all those around them.

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Eagle

Good
on Nov 09 2009

Niffenegger does an exceptional job at keeping it clear and avoiding confusing the reader, and the pacing and momentum of the story is well-handled throughout. Recommended, particularly if you're sympathetic to romances, with the caveat that the gender roles are fairly strongly traditional.

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You've GOTTA Read This

Excellent
Reviewed by Sandy Nawrot on Aug 30 2011

There is so much cleverness, so much emotion, so much charm packed in one book here, it was almost more than my little heart could take at times.

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Simply Books

Above average
Reviewed by Megan on Jan 19 2014

I kind of have mixed feelings about The Time Traveler's Wife, but overall I enjoyed the book. I probably won't ever read it again but I do want to watch the movie now. If you like long and finely detailed novels then this is probably the book for you.

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Rivers I Have Known

Below average
Reviewed by Amritorupa Kanjilal on Mar 05 2014

...the book is not amazing. Not even close. For one thing, it is far too long...the writer insists on going into the details of parties they attend, meals they have, conversations they have. To make matters worse, the first person narration keeps shifting from Claire to Henry and back every few paragraphs...

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http://www.sheilaomalley.com

Good
Reviewed by Sheila on Apr 12 2008

It’s a helluva first novel, I have to say. Niffenegger writes with great confidence, sweeping her characters through the landscape – and I just loooove the FEEL of Chicago she gets into the book.

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Reviews of Books

Good
Reviewed by W.R. Greer on Jan 01 2003

Grab a copy of The Time Traveler's Wife and throw yourself headlong into their story. It's time well spent. This is a highly recommended read, and I know it will be a gift I'll offer generously to others on my holiday list this year.

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http://scienceblogs.com

Good
Reviewed by Greg Laden on Jun 12 2009

The suspension of disbelief is easy given the very high quality of the writing. I thought the ending was overcomplicated in the story telling considering how utterly simple the actual events are...but I sensed the writer wanted to tie up some threads.

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January Magazine

Good
Reviewed by David Abrams on May 22 2014

Every so often, a novel lands in my hands as if it fell from the sky -- a happy surprise of literary delights, a book which transports and transfixes me, an original story which creates its own world with what seems like effortless artistry.

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Such A Book Nerd

Good
Reviewed by Jamie P on Jul 21 2011

“The Time Traveler’s Wife” is an awesome book. If you’re looking for a piece of fiction that you’ll be unable to put down, and be thinking about long after you’ve finished, this is the book you’re looking for.

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http://www.nesfa.org

Good
Reviewed by Elisabeth Carey on May 22 2014

Niffenegger handles the odd chronology of her story extremely well, conveying both a clear sense of confusions and problems caused by Henry's condition, and a coherent sense of the personal growth of Henry and Clare and the growth of their relationship...

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Reader Rating for The Time Traveler's Wife
75%

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Rachel Mary Bernth 13 Aug 2013

Rated the book as 4.5 out of 5

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