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End of an Era

3.76  ·  Rating details ·  840 ratings  ·  65 reviews
Archaeologist Brandon Thackery and his rival Miles 'Klicks' Jordan fulfill a dinosaur lover's dream with history's first time-travel jaunt to the late Mesozoic. Hoping to solve the extinction mystery, they find Earth's gravity is only half its 21st century value and dinosaurs that behave very strangely. Could the slimey blue creatures from Mars have something to do with bo ...more
Paperback, 247 pages
Published October 19th 2001 by Tor Books (first published 1994)
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3.76  · 
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 ·  840 ratings  ·  65 reviews

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Mar 14, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi, 2016, challenge
End of an Era is a novel variation on a time travel yarn (although I guess every time travel yarn is a novel variation). Thanks to a vaguely described scientific principle and an even more vaguly described time travel macine, the central characters are thrown back 60 something million years to the Mesozoic period, complete with Tyrannosaurs, Triceratops, Brontosauruses et al. But when they get there, things are a bit different than history (or pre-history) had led them to believe. SLIGHT SPOILER ...more
Apr 23, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: sci-fi, time-travel, alien
This is my 5th or 6th Sawyer novel and I'm seeing common themes of science, family, moral decisions and God. However while some of the themes are common this is a different plot from previous books of his (that I've read). The pace is a little faster and we have some pretty cool action scenes.

In a nutshell, time travel is invented and it turns out that it is actually easier and cost less energy to go farther back in time than to a time nearer our own. So we go back 65 million years before the ex
Jul 10, 2016 rated it liked it
If you missed this one, go back and find it. It is a wild ride. Hang onto your hat! Sawyer had me at dinosaurs and time travel but throw in some aliens and big life problems, wow.
Apr 22, 2017 rated it liked it
Tight little time travel story, slightly silly but just the right length.
Tim Martin
Aug 29, 2012 rated it really liked it
_End of an Era_ by Robert J. Sawyer I thought would be a fairly standard -if there is such a thing - time travel novel. Scientists/adventures journey to the Mesozoic Era (usually the Cretaceous Period), have some adventures, make some interesting discoveries, something goes wrong, and they get home some how. I knew from the very beginning that the two scientist protagonists in this book - Dr. Brandon "Brandy" Thackeray, curator of Vertebrate Paleontology at the Royal Ontario Museum in Canada and ...more
James Mourgos
Sep 06, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: sci-fi
Loved Robert J. Sawyer’s standalone novel, The End of an Era. Time travel has been discovered and two unlikely travelers, two paleontologists from the 21st century, Canada -- (naturally since Sawyer’s novels often depict the awesomeness of Canadian culture – eh?) – with Brandy, a guy with many flaws and quite the Everyman in every respect, who just lost his wife to his best friend, Klicks, who is also aboard the same time ship.

Of course the resulting tensions between the two create a ripe atmos
Oct 17, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: comedy, sf
Not sure if this story was *meant* to be a comedy, but I laughed a lot. It certainly has chutzpah too - it takes quite a bit of guts to propose and seriously examine such a ... creative and (pardon the pun) novel explanation for both the size dinosaurs reached and the method of their extinction.
Lelia Taylor
Oct 29, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: full-reviews
End of an Era is a re-read for me, something I don't do very often but, years ago, Robert J. Sawyer became one of my favorite science fiction writers and I was delighted to hear about this blog tour. I'll always do what I can to bring attention to this author's work...and, by the way, having met him ten years ago when my daughter's and my bookstore was the exclusive bookseller and he was guest of honor at RavenCon, I can attest to him being a really nice guy.

I don't remember now which book of Mr
Ezekiel McAdams
Feb 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this. Sawyer was able to balance technobabble, plot seamlessly. Although I didn't like a few of the scenes that abruptly took you out of the main narrative.

EVERYONE knows I LOVE Dinosaurs AND time travel and the fact that was set in prehistoric Canada, Alberta no less was a treat.

I'm just mad at myself it took me about a week to read through, what would normally be a breezy 224 pg count. I need to get better at structuring my time and avoiding trying to multitask social media wh
Edward III
Apr 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
End of An Era by Robert J. Sawyer is a fun alien romp with dinosaurs. You can tell it’s one of Sawyer’s earlier books as the prose is a bit rough compared to the flowing high-end work he does now, but it was still good. Spit up my tea a few times – Sawyer refers to going back in time as throwback, the name of the book I’m currently working on, and there is an extinction element, which my WIP also deals with, however the stories are so different I’m not concerned. Plus, this one is from 1994. Saw ...more
Dec 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I read this book back when it was released in paperback in the mid-1990s. It was my introduction to Sawyer.

It was a fun and intriguing adventure that still stands out in my mind all these years later.
Mar 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book was a hoot! Dinosaurs, time travel, quantum mechanics, and Martians! What's not to love? Nothing. This book has everything you could possibly hope to want. It's amazing. Read it. Enjoy it. It's so much fun!
Jen B
Jan 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
A great read. It took me a couple chapters to get used to the back and forth between the future and the past, but it was a good, quick read while I was bedridden sick. Will be reading all the rest of the books by this author in the coming month(s.)
Jun 11, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was an odd one. I wasn't expecting a sci-fi novel that didn't take itself seriously and that had more than its fair share of snorts and giggles, but that's what it was. It did raise some absolutely fascinating possibilities though... and it was an enjoyable read too.
Apr 30, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019
Pretty good. I found the time travel resolution too outré to handle (which is probably more of a comment about me than the author), but other than that, I enjoyed it.
Sara Best
Dec 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Robert Sawyer always has such original stories to tell. This one did not disappoint. It was an imaginative twist to the nature of destiny.
Scott Margo
Mar 30, 2018 rated it liked it
Enjoyable but not stellar. Not as mature are his later work, but still worth a read. similar to early work by Heinlein.
Phil Kozel
Nov 17, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
Not what I expected to be sure. I like Sawyer and his existential musings and this was a quick, fun read.
May 06, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2014
Bohaterem powieści “End of an Era” jest naukowiec Brandon Thackeray. Jest archeologiem w czasach, gdy nauka ta ma coraz mniej fajerwerków do zaoferowania. Uwielbia skamieliny, godzinami może rozprawiać o dinozaurach oraz o możliwych przyczynach ich zagłady. Mamy rok 2013. Brandonowi trafia się niezwykła okazja do osobistego sprawdzenia jak wyglądał świat mniej więcej 65 milionów lat temu, powstała bowiem maszyna do podróżowania w czasie. Jednak metoda podróży jest na tyle skomplikowana, że wyklu ...more
Roddy Williams
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Michael Smith
Oct 20, 2017 rated it it was ok
Sawyer is the best-known Canadian author of science fiction -- one of the most successful Canadian authors of any kind, actually -- but I’ve always found his books rather uneven. Some are absorbing while others (like the “WWW” series) are almost unreadable. This early effort is right in the middle of the pack.

Brandon Thackery is a paleontologist -- “a dinosaur guy,” he says -- who has been tapped for the first time travel journey back to the late Mesozoic. (It turns out that long-distance trips
End Of An Era
by Robert J. Sawyer

I had no recollection at all of reading this originally but it was on my read shelf. So before recycling it, I skimmed the book to get a feel for it and see if it jogged any memories. It is a pretty short and fast read. Overall, while incredibly fanciful, a nice read.

The story is first person narrative from Brandon, a paleontologist who goes back in time with his best friend/ ex-wife’s boyfriend Klicks. There is an alternate thread of a Brandon reading a diary app
Oct 10, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
This starts off as a straight-up time travel adventure story. Two scientists embark on the first trip back to Cenozoic Canada. But rapidly it comes out that all our paleontological conclusions are mistaken; even the strength of the gravitational field of the Earth is not as has been assumed. Before revealing his fictional sweeping alternative explanation for life on Earth, Sawyer raises thought-provoking considerations in the real interpretation of the geological and astronomical record. I have ...more
Having recently finished Sawyer's Neanderthal Parallax trilogy, I was excited to read this book. Time travel has been invented, in 2016, i believe, and two men are being sent back in a rickety underfunded vessel to see what really killed the dinosaurs. The first thing i noticed was that, although their 'future' is only a couple years away, it seems quite outdated. they still use VHS!! lol. The second thing is, these men are not likeable. the book is the journal of one of the travelers, and it fl ...more
Jan 21, 2013 rated it it was ok
Whenever the author mentioned something scientifically questionable, I folded the lower corner of that page. By the end of the read, the bottom of the book looked like origami. I almost had put the book down for that reason, but continued on. It turns out that there was a treasure to be found in that decision. Although the "science" part of the science fiction was terrible, the "fiction" part has good merits. There are creative ideas in here concerning the history of Earth.
Further knocking the
Feb 09, 2017 rated it liked it
Like his other books, this one has a good deal of scientific speculation combined with a good story.
Dec 31, 2012 rated it liked it
Every now and then, I like to channel the 10 year old boy I was who loved to watch Saturday morning cartoons and was simultaneously captivated by NASA's front page space race with the Soviets to place a man on the moon. The wide open imagination of that boy absorbed TV shows like "Time Tunnel", "Lost in Space", "Star Trek" (the original), movies like "First Men in the Moon", "The Time Machine", "Them", "Mysterious Island" and cartoons like "Jonny Quest", and "Journey to the Center of the Earth" ...more
Steven Cole
Nov 08, 2010 rated it really liked it
So, a pair of bickering paleontologists climb into a time machine and head back to find out what they can about the extinction of dinosaurs 65 million years ago.

What they find is OMG. Can't tell you. It's the most off the wall explanation of what killed off the dinosaurs I've ever heard. And at the end, it's all tidied up into the world of today.

So, pretty much fascinating. There was also a little bit of soul-searching in multiple timelines thing going on, but that's a bit awkward. This is early
Feb 28, 2016 rated it liked it
This was a fun, fast read. It relied on a few obvious tropes of time travel, but made up for it with some cool action shots and interesting ideas. Two things small really stood out, reading this in 2016. First, the most anachronistic thing about the entire book is how the author thought we would be using computers in the future (~2010, I think it was set in). Second, it made me realize I don't know enough about dinosaurs to know how anachronistic the portrayal of them is, relative to current res ...more
Jun 02, 2011 rated it really liked it
This was totally fun--includes time travel as well as an alternative theory on why the dinosaurs all went extinct, as well as why they were able to be so big in earth's gravity--not to mention slimy, blue creatures from Mars and why it is a dead planet today. Typical Robert Sawyer writing--not great literature but really unique, interesting ideas and easy to read straight through. The way he ties up everything up at the end is very satisfying with even a little "wow" mixed in. Take with you on a ...more
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Robert J. Sawyer is one of Canada's best known and most successful science fiction writers. He is the only Canadian (and one of only 7 writers in the world) to have won all three of the top international awards for science fiction: the 1995 Nebula Award for The Terminal Experiment, the 2003 Hugo Award for Hominids, and the 2006 John W. Campbell Memorial Award for Mindscan.
Robert Sawyer grew up in
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