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All Clear

(All Clear #2)

4.05  ·  Rating details ·  18,955 ratings  ·  2,243 reviews
In Blackout, award-winning author Connie Willis returned to the time-traveling future of 2060—the setting for several of her most celebrated works—and sent three Oxford historians to World War II England: Michael Davies, intent on observing heroism during the Miracle of Dunkirk; Merope Ward, studying children evacuated from London; and Polly Churchill, posing as a shopgirl ...more
Hardcover, 656 pages
Published October 19th 2010 by Spectra
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Casie Blevins Say Colin leaves on April 2, 2060 and spends three months in 1995, then returns to 2060 at the exact moment that he left. Then he leaves and spends 9 …moreSay Colin leaves on April 2, 2060 and spends three months in 1995, then returns to 2060 at the exact moment that he left. Then he leaves and spends 9 mths in 1980 and returns at the exact moment he left in 2060. Voila, he is now one year older but it is still April 2nd, 2060. Then if Polly returns to the same day (April 2, 2060) from wherever she might go (say one week in 1941). Colin is now closer to her in age because she is only chronologically one week older, and he is chronologically one year older.(less)
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Misty King I believe so. There are many generations between so its very possible. In fact, its a wonder these historians never mention their own ancestry to insu…moreI believe so. There are many generations between so its very possible. In fact, its a wonder these historians never mention their own ancestry to insure nothing like this happens.(less)

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Amy Sturgis
Let me begin by saying that The Doomsday Book is one of my all-time favorite novels (definitely "top ten," quite possibly "top five"), and I'm also tremendously fond of Connie Willis's Lincoln's Dreams, as well. When I knew she had a new book - well, duology, though the two books are really one chopped in half - set in the same time-travel universe as The Doomsday Book, I was beside myself with anticipation. (I blame her publishers for the decision to splice the book and then wait months between ...more
Mar 02, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: scifi
Time-traveling historians fight their way home. This book was ridiculous. I feel bad writing that, because 1. so many people liked it so much, and I'm sad to think I didn't understand how to appreciate it, and 2. it's a celebrated author's book about a WAR. But the only way I remotely got through it was by treating it as a comic novel and mentally tallying up all the ridiculousness, including but not limited to: 1. every time a character's mission was completely stymied by one single, non-malici ...more
Nov 29, 2010 rated it really liked it
It's here It's here!

The only reason why this is not a 5 is because the middle section of Blackout and All Clear (and I count them as one book, because really they are) annoyed me a bit with the obsession over whether they changed the outcome of the war and where the retrieval team, over and over. I understand why Willis did this (complete anxiety!) but it was too much. Probably because I have gone through times in my life when I too get completely stuck in the broken record of a mind loop, and t
I hate this book so much. I hate it so much that it hurts. I hate that I spent an audible credit on it. I hate that it's about subjects I LOVE- WWII? Bletchley Park? And it still sucks. It's not badly written- it's just a terrible story, and the lead characters are whiny, dumb, ignorant, and keep switching voices. (that last isn't the author's fault). I HATE that I know more WWII trivia than these "historians" do. That part is the worst. That and the idea that three professional time travellers, ...more
Nov 23, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: sf
I found this book to be both amazing and frustrating. I don't recall ever having such mixed feelings about a book. When it's rolling it's a rare and rewarding page turner and when it bogs down it feels like a week of reading before the story moves on. There are way too many pages where we go inside a character's head and we listen to that character wonder. She'll wonder if she did something wrong and lost the war for England, she'll wonder where another character is and what they are doing and i ...more
Nov 14, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: science-fiction
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Lisa  (not getting friends updates) Vegan
Dec 12, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: all readers who enjoy historical fiction &/or time travel books &/or any speculative fiction
This is a wonderful and amazing book. It really is the second half of a book. On the same day, I went from finishing Blackout and started reading this book, and it was like going from one chapter to another, not like going from one book to another.

Thank you to Goodreads friend and fellow group member Sarah Pi who didn’t let me see answers to my questions and therefore helped me avoid unwanted spoilers.

I am very proud that less than 1/3 the way through this book, I figured something out, probably
This was unnecessarily long. It should have been combined with the first part, Blackout and edited into one book.

The characterizations are very good, but what is done with those characters is often pointless. All they do is worry and speculate; running around not asking vital questions and refusing to tell one another the truth. So much crazy squirrel behavior from what are supposed to be highly trained Oxford graduates, it's ridiculous.

Because Willis can write and I enjoyed Sir Godfrey and the
Kara Babcock
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The second half of Blackout more than a sequel. Weird experience – I have massive problems with this book, but I also could not put it down. Hrm.

I think that this book succeeds at its smaller scale purpose. It’s clear from what she’s said that Willis did massive amounts of research about the Blitz, and that she really wanted to make it come alive. Which she did. She takes this sense of fear and purpose, this keep calm and carry on, this practicality and humor and misery, and she nails that basta
Nov 27, 2010 rated it it was amazing
I have a day job, a night job, and a band. I am working on my fourth album and on a novel and on several short stories. I have a dog and a pony to take care of and I'm trying to teach myself to run by February so that I can join my friends' relay triathlon team. So when I say that I spent four hours curled up in a blanket tonight with my phone set to do-not-disturb because I could not possibly bear to put this book down before I had finished the last three hundred pages, know that I haven't done ...more
She does it again.

While it didn’t move me quite as profoundly as her masterpiece Doomsday Book, this elaborately-structured, deeply humane, beautifully-rendered novel proves that Connie Willis is indeed a master. Everything matters, even when, at times, in its hundreds of pages there are moments that seem tangential or muddled. She has worked it all out, and has wound up with an increasingly resonant meditation on hope, courage, chaos, and the small and large ways in which we are all connected t
Oct 13, 2020 rated it really liked it
Much better than the first part, given to us in Blackout. I suspect, still, that 20% of Blackout and 10% of this book could be cut out, without loss of content or quality.
Really, these are more of a historical drama set in the Blitz than anything else. Ms. Willis deftly twists the story-lines of past and future back together into a very satisfying ending.
This took me way longer than it should’ve done to finish. First I started it immediately after finishing Blackout, which I would highly recommend, but then I interrupted it to listen to other more pressing buddy read books. Once I got back to it, some 8 months later, I had kind of forgotten some details and was mildly confused at the start.

That aside, this is such an excellent and intricate story. I love the time travel element, which is more prevalent than in Blackout, but the real meat of the
Feb 19, 2011 added it
Shelves: world-war-ii
All Clear, or, I'm An Historian, Get Me Out Of Here!

What I really found lacking in this novel, and in Blackout All Clear 1, was an overall sense of being in another time. I know I was reminded of the fact of it on every single page for a thousand pages (“THIS IS TIME TRAVEL! I am AN HISTORIAN and THIS IS TIME TRAVEL!”), but I never got a real sense of it. Maybe this is because the Oxford of 2060 is very sketchily painted? I have no sense of home for any of the characters, and therefore no real s
Sep 16, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I don’t think I’ve ever been so sad to leave a set of characters behind. After spending more than 1,000 pages with them between All Clear and its predecessor Blackout, most of it set during the Blitz of London with lots of high tension twists and turns, heartaches and triumphs, I feel like we’ve been through the war together and it’s hard to let go. With three time traveling historians as protagonists and numerous less prominent but well developed supporting characters, both books have lots of v ...more

Christmas 2010: I realised that I had got stuck in a rut. I was re-reading old favourites again and again, waiting for a few trusted authors to release new works. Something had to be done.

On the spur of the moment I set myself a challenge, to read every book to have won the Locus Sci-Fi award. That’s 35 books, 6 of which I’d previously read, leaving 29 titles by 14 authors who were new to me.

While working through this reading list I got married, went on my honeymoon, switched career and beca
Elizabeth Hunter
Oct 08, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: sf
Three stars is a compromise rating here. I have loved much of Connie Willis' work and her strengths keep growing. There is much to love in this two-book story: fantastic period detail, including real consideration for both how the period looks from a remove and how it was experienced by its "contemps"; nicely drawn characters who react in plausible ways to the situations they face; intricate plotting and an interesting story to tell. Unfortunately, there is much here to make one want to pull a D ...more
Breathtaking. And, let's face it, part of the reason why I was crying at the end wasn't just because the ending was so perfect, but because I know that I will never write a book as amazing as this.

Not only has Willis crafted an intricately layered time travel novel, but it's also an outstanding piece of historical fiction. She has an encyclopedic knowledge of WWII, and makes you feel the horror and hardship of life in England during the war in a way that no other author can. (At least none in m
Jun 29, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Oh I really don't know where to start: This book has been a disappointment and an utter waste of time. I dragged myself through 'Blackout' and persisted with this one, thinking that it will be all worth it. But despite of the twist in the end and what many have termed 'brilliant' finale, I still can't get over the fact that the omniscient narrative of Ms Willis, in which she follows each miniscule thought of the time travellers, really time consuming, boring, to a point it became truly annoying ...more
Sherwood Smith
Aside from horror (which I avoid) I really, really dislike comedy that depends on humiliation of the helpless, and anxious, frenetic running around with nothing getting done.

These two books were nothing but running anxiously around, the entire thousand plus pages. Because of that, I couldn't read straight through--I had to put the book down after a chapter or two, but Willis's writing is so good, her scenes so vivid, and above all, the numinous moments so lovely (and other moments so poignant) t
Oct 21, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Perhaps this wasn't the best of book(s) to have started with Willis. As much as I wanted to like it, the story just didn't rise to the occasion, but dragged on and on and on from one book to another with hardly any suspense or change in it's tiringly frenzied pace. I ultimately had to accept, that despite it's few scattered moments, the destination hadn't enough of an impact to justify the taxing journey.

The narration was meandering and repetitive, and the approach got lost somewhere in executio
lucky little cat
Awfulness this persistent requires a full-sized keyboard and all ten fingers to describe.*

Cutting my losses, DNF at 90%. I can see the future, and it's shamelessly predictable.

BOTH volumes in this series should have been trimmed drastically. Instead, readers are dragged through several hundred extraneous pages of the time-traveling main characters' circular agonizing over whether they've irreparably screwed up the historical timeline. Have they doomed England and themselves? Maybe. Maybe not. M
All Clear concludes the story Willis began in Blackout. It's unfortunate that the books had to be published separately, because they really are two halves of the same book and can't really be considered separately.

In Willis's time-travelling-Oxford-historians universe, several historians have been sent back to various points in England during World War II: Polly, in London masquerading as a shopgirl; Eileen, working as a maid in the country with evacuated children; and Michael, studying acts of
No reviewette I write can possibly do this book (or really, the single book composed of Blackout and All Clear) justice. Amazing. Epic. Subtlety of detail that had me paging back to confirm something hinted. Love. Loss. Loyalty. Uncertainty. Hope. Humor. Tragedy. The triumph of the human spirit. Connie Willis has outdone herself with this amazing tale of time travel so deeply rooted in place. Her Hugo and Nebula awards for Blackout/All Clear bring her lifetime totals to eleven Hugos and seven Ne ...more
Walk-on appearances by Alan Turing, Agatha Christie, Queen Elizabeth, General Patton ... we didn't quite get to have afternoon tea with the King and Winston Churchill, but almost. Puh-leeze!

Added to the need to cram in every bit of information possible on the Blitz and the build-up to D-Day, Connie Willis gave us in this book and "Blackout" two horrendous Cockney brats who turned out to be a crucial part of the plot. I suspect the problem is that Willis' books are totally plot driven and her cha
Oleksandr Zholud
Oct 25, 2019 rated it it was ok
This is the second volume of the two-book series, so read Blackout before reading this review.

Our three time travelers found each other and now together try to get out from the 1940 blitz in London. Once
again it was a mix of great historical narrative with a great care about details and that 'close call' soup opera-ness that irks me: why, oh why another traveler was just behind the wall/next door/was coughing and unable to talk?! And if talking than starting from far away, so they never reach t
Jun 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
To do something for someone or something you loved--England or Shakespeare or a dog or the Hodbins or history--wasn't a sacrifice at all. Even if it cost you your freedom, your life, your youth.
--Connie Willis, All Clear

And we know we shall win
As we are confident
In the victory
Of good over evil

--Bob Marley, "War"

Oh boy. This book. I have a lot to say. Or rather, I have a jumble of thoughts and emotions that I will try to pour out into coherent speech. Bear with me.

First of all, this is part of
Chris Aylott
Mar 08, 2011 rated it it was ok
I didn't much like the first volume of this novel, but I picked up the second part hoping that -- much like Robin Hobb did in her last book -- Willis would make everything pay off in a satisfying way. Nope. Not this time, at least not for me.

There are some good scenes (an action sequence in the middle, and the conclusion) that kept me from giving this one star, but overall this is overblown and unwieldy. I get that this is a tribute to the ordinary folk who won the Battle of Britain, and as the
Mar 29, 2019 rated it really liked it
All Clear is the last book in the Oxford Time Travel series and the conclusion to the story begun in the previous book, Blackout. The story is set mostly during World War II and it picks up directly after the previous book.

It was mostly fast-paced and I really enjoyed it, although I did have issues with part of the premise of this series and how it was used to explain events in these last two books. I had a similar issue with the second book, but not the first one. The author takes a unique appr
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The ending - SPOILERS! 46 849 Jun 08, 2021 01:29AM  
SciFi and Fantasy...: "All Clear" by Connie Willis (BR) 19 82 Aug 13, 2020 03:58AM  
Play Book Tag: All Clear / Connie Willis. 4 stars 1 11 Oct 06, 2019 02:13PM  
Lady Bracknell is a man? 3 79 Apr 12, 2019 09:59AM  
Any Historians or WWII Buffs Reading? 1 6 Jun 22, 2018 08:24AM  
Science Fiction &...: All Clear by Connie Willis (April 2018) 15 19 Apr 27, 2018 02:59PM  
Science Fiction A...: * #2 All Clear 2 22 May 24, 2017 08:22AM  

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Constance Elaine Trimmer Willis is an American science fiction writer. She is one of the most honored science fiction writers of the 1980s and 1990s.

She has won, among other awards, ten Hugo Awards and six Nebula Awards. Willis most recently won a Hugo Award for All Seated on the Ground (August 2008). She was the 2011 recipient of the Damon Knight Memorial Grand Master Award from the Science Ficti

Other books in the series

All Clear (2 books)
  • Blackout (All Clear, #1)

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