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>I’ll Be Seeing You . . .

>Last Friday we had a very entertaining time of proofreading the Guide, aided by candy and fave tunes from the 80s provided by Miss Touch-Me Pod, whose little speaker recalls the halcyon days of AM transistor radios. There was an ongoing war, too, over the merits of The Time Traveler’s Wife, loved by Elissa and Chelsey and hooted at derisively by Kitty and me.

But I am glad that time travel seems to be back in a big way and I’ll gladly give Audrey Niffenegger the credit if she wants it. The children’s book of the summer is Rebecca Stead’s When You Reach Me (see my interview with the author here), and I’ll be glad when you’ve all read it so we can talk about it. For those of you who have, and without giving anything away: do the kids and neighborhood remind anyone else of Vera Williams’s Scooter?

I also recently enjoyed–and Time Traveler’s Wife fans can here hoot at meRude Awakenings of a Jane Austen Addict, a chick-lit novel by Laurie Viera Rigler about a young lady of Austen’s milieu whooshed into contemporary L.A. via a fall from a horse. The book is a sequel to Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict, about the L.A. gal who trades places with the Regency one, but that conceit seemed rather more ordinary to me so I didn’t pick up the book. The two books together make me think of Nancy Bond’s sadly neglected Another Shore, about a contemporary girl time-travelled back to colonial times, aware that a girl from then and there has taken her place in the present–and probably has it much, much worse.

Why is it that when I hit my head, I only get a lump?

Roger Sutton About Roger Sutton

Roger Sutton has been the editor in chief of The Horn Book, Inc, since 1996. He was previously editor of The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books and a children's and young adult librarian. He received his M.A. in library science from the University of Chicago in 1982 and a B.A. from Pitzer College in 1978. Follow him on Twitter: @RogerReads.



  1. Anonymous says:

    >I loved Nancy Bond's Another Shore. SUCH an ending. I don't know of another like it except perhaps Pamela Dean's Secret Country books.

  2. >Except for the ending, which I think I found a little confusing, I enjoyed The Time Traveler's Wife while I was reading it. But as soon as I finished it, I didn't care anymore. Immediately. As soon as I closed the book. It was a very bizarre experience.

  3. >There was a direct correlation between liking TTTW and crying during BEACHES, and not liking TTTW and shedding nary a tear for poor dying Barbara Hershey. Robots.

  4. Anonymous says:

    >Gail, I had a similar experience. It was a surprise to be so absorbed in the book while I was reading it, and then not give it another thought when I was done.

    Wait, there were robots in Beaches? Maybe I'll netflick it.

  5. >I loved TTTW and hated Beaches, for what it's worth. . . . But then TTTW takes place in a city that I know and contains a lot of places and music that I like, and I suspect that those things are a lot of why it resonates to me. Set in some other context, I might well find it a bit sappy.

  6. >There were robots (or something similar) in that awful industrial number Midler did in Beaches. (I remember sitting in the back row of the Biograph Theater in Chicago with a friend and crying into our popcorn, much to the amusement of the single gentleman sitting behind us.) As for hitting yourself on the head, Roger- maybe you should stop that.

  7. Beth Kephart says:

    >I'm afraid I stand with you on TTTW.

    I'm very afraid.

  8. >Loved future Newbery winner WHEN YOU REACH ME. And loved TTTW, too, although I am dreading the movie which, nevertheless, I feel compelled to go see. I suppose if it's awful, I can time travel back to today, and skip it next time around.

  9. dotdotdot says:

    >Your statements about the Jane Austen Addict books remind me of my feelings for Linda Buckley-Archer's Gideon Trilogy. The first one has the typical children end old timey Britain plot (although very well done), but the second has its stirring bits when two "bad guy" characters end up in modern London.

  10. >Thank you so much for hooting derisively at The Time Traveler's Wife. I can't remember a book that pissed me off more. I nearly ruined a perfectly good vacation with that book a few years ago and I am still bitter.

  11. Anonymous says:

    >TTTW was one of two books I received as birthday presents. (The other was Edgar Sawtelle.) Felt compelled to finish both, although reading them was tedious, and I gladly donated them to my local charity when I was finished.

  12. Anonymous says:

    >are you sure that the persons who gave you those two books isn't a reader of this blog? how embarrassing for them to learn that you dumped their (presumably) thoughtful gifts

  13. Anonymous says:

    >oops! of course I meant to say "those persons who gave you . . . aren't readers…" blog language is sloppy

  14. >Oh, what validation to come here and hear all these people saying they hated TTTW. I haven't read the book, but I went to see the movie last weekend, and came out wanting my money back, not to mention my 2 hours. I was so engrossed the whole way through until the very end–so, so many continuity problems! I swear he showed up much more gray-haired at times than certain circumstances should have allowed for. And don't *even* get me started on the ending!

    I really hate time travel stories or foresee-the-future stories in which that future is unchangeable. If you're not allowed to change the future, then why the heck have the power?

    I must admit, though, that the concept of that non-linear relationship was fascinating. I just wish it hadn't been coupled with all the predestination-can't-change-anything crap.

  15. >NO KIDDING Stacy! That's one of my problems with the book– Time travel isn't even that interesting if you can't mess with the future a little. And I don't know how the movie ended but the book's ending totally pissed me off.

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