Sunday, July 29, 2012

Time travel, rock'n'roll and Stephen there's a combo

I’m a bit of a sucker for time travel stories. On an entirely different note, Stephen King has written some of my favourite novels over the years. (The Green Mile comes to mind).
So when I saw that King had published an epic time travel novel, “11.22.63” I was attracted like a moth to a flame.
Those who know anything about Stephen King know that he likes his rock’n’roll  , has at times played it himself in a group, comprised of bestselling authors who-play-intruments, called the Rock Bottom Remainders, and that he has an enduring interest in the America of the mid to late 20th Century (reflected in his novella ‘Stand By Me,” and many other works).
One of the fascinating aspects of the time travel genre is that it enables us, through the eyes of a character from our time, not just to observe the past but also to imagine the impact of interacting with it.
And King does that – and more – in this story of Jake Epping, who does not just visit a previous era but “lives’ in it, day by day, year by year, becoming part of the lives of a group of people. For Jake there is a life-changing romance with the wonderfully drawn Sadie Dunhill, while dancing to some of the now classic rock hits as they are released for the very first time.
From the perception of a man of “today,” we experience the culture, the attitudes, the prejudices (and in some cases the innocence) of a different generation. All leading, of course, toward one of the most famous and tragic moments - the JFK assasination - in the history of America.
"11.22.63," won the Los Angeles Times 2011 Best Mystery/Thriller Novel and the 2011 International Thriller Writers Best (Hard Cover) Novel.
My Goodreads review of “11.22.63” follows:

I've always enjoyed a good time travel story, and I'm a long time reader of Stephen King, so when King produced an epic time travel tale, I was a definite starter - and without question this is one of the best I've read. This novel has a powerful emotional tug, and delivers fascinating insights by juxtaposing the social mores and thinking of the current era against those of half a century ago. An ordinary, everyday guy - a teacher - from our time, goes back and lives and works - and falls in love - in the America of the late 50's/early 60's. And we experience it as though we are right there alongside him. Once again King builds the suspense with a master's touch as we head toward that historic day in November, 1963. Can an ordinary man alter one of the most fateful moments in history? Should he?

Rock'n'roll image -
© Ashestosky |

1 comment:

  1. What you've done becomes the judge of what you're going to do - especially in other people's minds. When you're traveling, you are what you are right there and then. People don't have your past to hold against you. No yesterdays on the road.
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