The Psychology of Time Travel

Kate Mascarenhas

The Psychology of Time Travel

Kate Mascarenhas

1967: Four female scientists invent a time-travel machine. They are on the cusp of fame: the pioneers who opened the world to new possibilities. But then one of them suffers a breakdown and puts the whole project in peril.

2017: Ruby knows her beloved Granny Bee was a pioneer, but they never talk about the past. Though time travel is now big business, Bee has never been part of it. Then they receive a message from the future–a newspaper clipping reporting the mysterious death of an elderly lady.

2018: When Odette discovered the body, she went into shock. Blood everywhere, bullet wounds, flesh. But when the inquest fails to answer any of her questions, Odette is frustrated. Who is this dead woman that haunts her dreams? And why is everyone determined to cover up her murder?

Three events years apart, seemingly unconnected, come together in a novel that has so much going for it. Time travel is a brilliant invention to use in books. You always know that the book is going to get super crazy fast when it comes into play. Thankfully in this book, it’s use of time travel is brilliant, if a little complicated at times.

We start in 1967 where four female scientists holed up in the beautiful Lake District are about to celebrate Christmas along with their first venture into time travel. Not able to travel to anytime when time travel machines don’t exist, they journey to the near future and back again. All goes well at first, but then one of the scientists Bee, has a breakdown at their press conference.

From here the plot swings between different time zones as we try to solve a murder mystery in 2018. On the way we meet various versions of the main characters. At first it gets a little complicated understanding what time period you’re in, especially if you don’t, like me, read the headings on the chapters. (black mark to me, although I’d say in my defence I was wanting to keep on reading.)

I love time travel books and this one is a worthy addition to the genre. At it’s heart is a search to find out who committed a murder, but the way it’s wrapped up in this fast and furious prose, it makes it more than the usual.

All in all I loved the book, a solid read. It’s imaginative and the characters well described and not wooden. The way each character has different personalities depending on where in the timeline we meet them is a brilliant touch. Definitely recommend anyone reads this entertaining book.

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