Serious Time Travel: A Review of Timeline


To me, time travel has always been fascinating. I could meet J. R. R. Tolkien! Charles Dickens! Agatha Christie! Naturally, I read all the books on time travel I could get my hands on. However, after a while I got tired of them and I stopped. But then I read Timeline. This book, by Michael Crichton, is about a group of archeologists who work for the ITC (Internet Technology Corporation). When their professor disappears, they are sent to the 14th century to retrieve him. Timeline was a hit for me—it was full of tense adventure, but it was also realistic.

Like all of Crichton’s novels, Timeline was full of nail-biting escapades: the archeologists are trying to find their professor, but they are constantly under attack. Their time is running out. The constant whizzing of arrows, clashing of swords, and treading of footsteps was enough to fill you with dread as well as to put you on full mental alert. While I was reading Timeline, every little noise made me jump! Even the sound of the wind frightened me, but this feeling of dread was also exhilarating. My heart beat as fast as a hummingbird’s wings. No doubt this is what Crichton wanted to happen . . .

We all love thrilling stories, but some books fall short because they are not realistic. However, Timeline was all believable, specifically the language and the behavior of the people. Peasants talked in old English, so the archeologists had a translating device. The behavior of the people is pretty realistic, too. One archeologist, who knows a lot about this period, is calm. Another, who is clueless, panics and makes bad decisions. The peasants react naturally: since they don’t understand modern English, they assume the archeologists are Irish. This increases the stakes of the story.

When I opened Timeline, I had no idea I would experience such exhilaration. However, I should warn you: Timeline is violent. If you get nightmares from books, or if you have an incredibly weak stomach, don’t read this book. For example, there is a description of a severed head that may haunt you for days or may drive you immediately to the bathroom. Also, this book has lots of bad words. My parents probably didn’t remember this book had so many of them!

So if you love adventure, this book is for you! It’s a book about time travel, but don’t be mistaken: this is serious time travel.

Ages: 13+

You can buy this book here.


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