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Time and Time Again
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Emma Flanagan (emma89) This is the Spoiler Thread for Time and Time Again by Ben Elton


Emma Flanagan (emma89) The first thing that sprang to mind when I finished this was "history always repeats itself". Ben Elton seems to have taken that to a very literal extreme. I didn't realise until the the end that Hugh had come from a different version of the 20th century than our one.


Trelawn That's what I liked about the book, nothing was as you expected it to be. There were constant surprises


Paul Yeah the Adolf Hitler thing was a nice turn on the head.
Big lesson in being careful what you wish for as there was always a worse scenario.
And a lesson in that no matter how smart you think you are you never know how the changes will actually turn out.


Margo I'm a little over half way through this and enjoying it immensely, but I can't hold back a few comments.

For a highly intelligent man aided by a bunch of Cambridge dons, I can't come to terms with how badly he was prepared for his mission! Time travel 101 - don't bring your seiko watch!! And as for his use of slang, his acceptance of suffrage, and lesdianism - I don't think so. It is obvious to anyone that the great war played a huge role in shaping our attitudes towards all those issues - not to mentionthe rebellion.

Love his reaction to pubic hair though - now that's the Ben I knew and loved ;-)


Margo OMG he brought his tablet :0


Trelawn Deep breaths Margo : )


Margo Thanks - I'm OK now ;-p


message 9: by Monique (new) - added it

Monique (mfh2161) | 16 comments I saw this thread and skipped the comments - as I want to read the book after reading the synopsis! This looks awesome!


message 10: by Emma (new) - rated it 4 stars

Emma Flanagan (emma89) Monique there is a non spoiler thread which you should check out until you've read it. This is a book where a spoiler would totally ruin the book. Here is the link to the non spoiler thread. https://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/...


message 11: by Monique (new) - added it

Monique (mfh2161) | 16 comments Thank you, Emma!


Margo Finished this today and loved the end. Despite all my quibbles I gave it 5*! I'll give my thoughts on it later :-)


Margo Emma wrote: "The first thing that sprang to mind when I finished this was "history always repeats itself". Ben Elton seems to have taken that to a very literal extreme. I didn't realise until the the end that H..."

Yeah, the thing about WW2 was very well done. That plus the ending saved it from a 4* rating from me.

I couldn't get my head around how poorly prepared Huge was for mission. I also found it very hard to swallow Bernies cool betrayal of the man she was supposed to love. Even though she believed him to be insane (understandably) to calmly drug him and then sneak off to the police doesn't feel like a normal reaction. I thought she was maybe going to turn out to be a spy - thpugh I'm not sure for whom she could have been working. I honestly think a civilian would've freaked out.


message 14: by Serf (new) - rated it 3 stars

Serf I really enjoyed this(4 stars) until the ending. He just lost me at the end. The alternate ending was so extreme that I couldn't cope lol. 3.5 stars for me.


Jackie | 19 comments Thanks Goodreads Ireland for another great read. The last Ben Elton book I read was Gridlock I realised to my surprise that it was published in 1991 how time flies! A lot of borrowers said how good this book was when it first came out, I am so pleased I've finally read it.
I loved the time travelling Hugh Stanton but was a bit uncomfortable with the way he could murder so easily. I felt that some of the historical content was skipped over to quickly I would have liked a little more depth. A great page turner, will catch up with more of Ben Elton's work.


Trelawn It seems to have gone down well in general. It's a great adventure with some well researched history backing the whole thing up. While I certainly didn't find all of Hugh's actions palatable I found myself rooting for him all the same. He had been shafted by everyone, I just wanted to see him be ok. The more he tried to fix the wrongs of history the harder it seemed to be for him to remain the good guy.


Margo If you enjoyed this book, Steven Kings 22.11.63 has a similar theme. The hero travels back in time to prevent the assassination of JFK, but history fights back. I quite enjoued it but got a bit bogged down in the detail. For me the Ben Elton was the better read.


message 18: by Sara (new) - rated it 3 stars

Sara | 2357 comments Mod
This one was only a fairly middle of the road read for me.

While I liked Hugh a lot, and I found the two main female characters in this book to be be poorly developed, which is a pet peeve of mine in books.

Professor Cluskey seemed to be the stereotypical cold and calculating female academic who doesn't have any children. This is a fairly common trope in books. I don't think that writing her in this manner was necessary to the plot. I'm also curious as to whether folks felt like the deliberate killing of Hugh's family was really necessary.

Bernadette (before she betrays Hugh to the authorities) on the other hand seems a bit too good to be true.

I did like that Hugh came from a different version of the 20th century than our own.

On the other hand, the plot at the end of the book with all its different versions of history got a bit convoluted. Time travel novels have a tendency in my experience to get that way, if not extremely well done. Margo compared it to 11/22/63, but I think Stephen King pulls it off better.

This was a quick fun read, but I didn't find it as good as many of you seemed to.


Margo Sara I'm mostly in agreement with your comments, this book wasn't without flaws, but for me the ending was brilliant!

I'm a huge fan of Steven King but 11/22/63 just didn't do what Ben Elton did for me. I think you'd have to have a big interest in the JFK assassination to truly appreciate that one. The miniseries was much more enjoyable for me.


message 20: by Serf (new) - rated it 3 stars

Serf I preferred kings version of the time travel though. I thought the ending of elton's aswell was too much. Too many different worlds, alternate endings, too many going back in time to kill the person trying to fix the past. It was overkill.


Margo That made me laugh Seraphina - overkill in the true sence of the word :-)


message 22: by Tara (new) - rated it 5 stars

Tara | 118 comments Finished this book a couple of weeks ago and have thought about it quite a few times since - loved the idea of time repeating itself and mankind's need to try to improve on what is when maybe we should leave well enough alone! I think there is a lesson there for all of us. Great read, thanks.


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