T.I.M.E is a time travel novel that deals with United States history. T.I.M.E. stands for Temporal Intervention and Management of Events. This is a agency whose apparent mission is to fix up American history so it comes out better. Agents are sent back in time to pivotal events, like the assassination attempt on Reagan, to make minor corrections and manipulate the outcome. When the agents return back to their home time, they are the only ones that remember history the way it used to be – since they changed it and in the world they return to it’s the only history everyone knows.
When you ponder this it does not take long before paradoxes arise and things get quite complicated. But such is the nature of time travel stories, and that’s probably why I enjoy them so much.
This premise is a good one, and the book’s first chapter does a nice job in its execution. It lured me in.
As I went further into the book, however, I found a myriad of problems with it, and I would summarize it now as a clumsy work at best.
To begin with, there is no one protagonist, but there are three agents who sort of serve as the “lead character,” while none of them is well rounded enough to be able to keep them apart. It’s Peter, Jon and Sabrina. All three are cardboard characters. Sabrina, being the girl, is supposed to be really sexy, but the author does not show us, he tells us awkwardly by describing how Peter looks at her. Since none of the characters are noteworthy in any way, I didn’t find any reason to empathize with any one of them, or care about how things would go. It made for shallow reading.
The structure of the novel was odd. The first few chapters describe how the agents go back in time to “fix” history. There is never any explanation of how they get into the past and then back. They just seem to wake up in hotel rooms in the past. Then, later in the book the entire structure seems to change and at the end, the story unravels so it does not really end, but just kind of fizzles. It’s almost like the author got tired of it himself.
The book is littered with spelling errors, grammatical errors, missed words, fragmented sentences and strange constructs. I felt like I was the first person to ever read the book. Does Richard Wood not have any editor? If not, does he not have a friend who could at least read the book ONCE to get rid of the worst editing errors? At the beginning I started keeping track by making bookmarks, but there were so many errors, hundreds, I lost interest in doing that. After all, I am not the author’s editor, I am a paying reader. It’s not my job to correct his errors.
This lack of attention to detail annoyed me and distracted from the story. The author didn’t even care enough to proof-read his own book – but he expects us, the readers, to pay him money for the privilege.
Some Amazon reviewers expressed they were hoping for a sequel. For me, there was nothing in this story that would want me to read any more.
3 thoughts on “Book Review: T.I.M.E. – by Richard Wood”
The book might have annoyed you, but your review captured (and entertained) me thoroughly.
Every book teaches us something. Some books are just there so they make us better writers! I do have a category of “Books Not Finished” and I discuss those from time to time – even then I feel like I learned.
There is no wonder why you are so good. 🙂