The Psychology of Time Travel
by Kate Mascarenhas
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Pub Date 12 Feb 2019 | Archive Date 29 Jan 2019
In 1967, four female scientists worked together to build the world’s first time machine. But just as they are about to debut their creation, one of them suffers a breakdown, putting the whole project—and future of time travel—in jeopardy. To protect their invention, one member is exiled from the team—erasing her contributions from history.
Fifty years later, time travel is a big business. Twenty-something Ruby Rebello knows her beloved grandmother, Granny Bee, was one of the pioneers, though no one will tell her more. But when Bee receives a mysterious message from the future reporting the murder of an unidentified woman, Ruby becomes obsessed: could it be Bee? Who would want her dead? And most importantly of all: can her murder be stopped?
Traversing the decades and told from alternating perspectives, The Psychology of Time Travel introduces a fabulous new voice in fiction and a new must-read for fans of speculative fiction and women’s fiction alike.
Praise for The Psychology of Time Travel:
"[A] superb debut novel... The Psychology of Time Travel heralds the arrival of a master storyteller."
"Intricately plotted . . . The story unfolds in a captivating way, and fascinating suggestions are made about the effects of time travel."
"With plenty of twists and turns, The Psychology of Time Travel is a provocative thought experiment."
"A dazzling genre-defying debut . . . witty, inventive and unflashily wise about human hearts; Mascarenhas’s future promises to be an exciting one."
"Mascarenhas' writing is clear and strong, making this a good choice for readers who want to be immersed in a story."
"The narrative moves back and forth through time with its almost all-female cast meeting their future and past selves in an intriguing, multi-layered mystery that is ingeniously plotted."
—The Daily Mail
"[A] compelling, confident debut...wrapping the psychological exploration around a diverse, real set of characters and a thrilling murder mystery."
—SFX Magazine, 4 1/2 stars
"A surprising, mysterious, and sometimes unsettling novel, threaded with off-kilter ideas and wonderful insights.”
—Elan Mastai, author of All Our Wrong Todays
“An elegant braid of a narrative, delivering queer joy and time-traveling women . . . Fans of Jo Walton will feel very much at home in this gorgeous, nested tale.”
—Meg Elison, author of The Book of the Unnamed Midwife
"The Psychology of Time Travel is the most imaginative thriller I've read in ages: captivating, delightful, and thoroughly original. Ms. Mascarenhas' genius is in patiently exploring the small, fascinating details of a world in which time travel is possible . . . an all-around wonderful novel."
—Jennie Melamed, author of Gather the Daughters
"Kate Mascarenhas deftly weaves an innovative tale with The Psychology of Time Travel—part mystery; part time travel. Entirely entertaining!"
—Julie McElwain, author of A Murder In Time
Praise from the sales team:
“A taut and adept first novel, The Psychology of Time Travel deftly weaves its characters into a prismatic web of murder, intrigue, time travel, creativity, friendship and betrayal. Kate Mascarenhas is definitely a writer with a bright future.” —Keith Arsenault, Ingram National Account Manager
"The perfect murder mystery with lots of twist and turns. Beginning with a murder and four female scientists about to embark on building the world’s first-time machine. What happens when personalities, ego and passion are in the mix. This is a clever and enticing read, that you won’t want to put down." —Elenita Chmilowski, Ingram Library Marketing Manager
"If you’ve read everything by Octavia Butler, Stephen Hawking, Diana Gabaldon, Arthur Conan Doyle, Margaret Atwood and Neil deGrasse Tyson and you don’t know what to read next—I’ve got the book for you! The Psychology of Time Travel is a mind-bending, time-traveling, scientific murder mystery romance. I can safely say that I’ve never read anything like it and I LOVED it! Crooked Lane has a great new voice in Kate Mascarenhas. Strong female characters with complex, real relationships; intricate clever plotting; thought-provoking topics—this will appeal to readers of many genres and literary fiction. Enjoy!" —Mary Skiver, National Account Manager Publishers Group West"A thought-provoking whodunit." —Michelle Fisher, Ingram National Accounts Manager
Available on NetGalley
Average rating from 334 members
A thought-provoking, page-turning, complexly plotted, fabulous read!
Imagine that time travel was actually possible - what would that be like? Who would own the 'rights'? What would the ramifications to history be? What would the constant changes in time do to a time traveller's circadian rhythm? And what would you do if you knew a crime had been committed in another time?
All of these questions, and more, are answered imaginatively and creatively by Kate Mascarenhas; she even includes a time travel glossary at the back of the book to help the reader understand the time travellers' jargon as they flash backwards and forwards in time, intersecting with their 'green' selves and their 'silver' selves, as well as their fathers, granddaughters and friends.
Focusing on four female time travel pioneers, The Psychology of Time Travel is a dazzling debut novel from Kate Mascarenhas. For anyone who loved The Time Traveller's Wife or Arcadia, this is for you.
In her debut novel, Kate Mascarenhas tells a beautifully woven story with an all female cast. In the late 1960's four women scientists create a time travel machine, and their lives are completely changed in an instant. They're given government funding to build the same thing only bigger, and it really changes how the whole world operates around them. One scientist in particular though, has a hard time dealing with the difference, and suffers a mental breakdown on television while being interviewed. Barbara is then taken into a mental hospital, diagnosed with manic depression, and forgotten about, and never even given any credit in the project. That is, until her granddaughter Ruby takes it upon herself to understand more of what happened. In this intricate book, the viewpoints not only switch between many generations of characters, but also different years, decades in between the last.
I just want to say how much I absolutely loved reading this book, I was drawn in by how different the cover was compared to other books, and the description just leapt out at me. If you loved the Time Traveler's Wife, you're going to love this book. Not only is it a time travel tale, but it's also a murder mystery, and I couldn't put it down for a second. I loved how much the world changed around them because of their invention, not only did it allow people to go back and forth in time to visit past and future loved ones, but it created jobs around it as well. Could you imagine if your career had a time travel aspect to it? Instead of commuting to work, you would be going maybe twenty years into the future to do your job.
My favourite quote in the book would have to be when Ruby is watching old videos of a time travelling lawyer named Fay, and in the last video she says, "When you're a time traveler, the people you love die, and you carry on seeing them, so their death stops making a difference to you. The only death that will change things is your own." It's just so interesting to me, being indifferent to death enough that going to a loved ones funeral is just another thing on your to-do list for the day. The book is very easy to read, and easy to follow, even with all the characters switching around so much. I definitely recommend you checking it out if you get the chance.
Thanks for reading!
A must read sci-fi murder mystery.
This story is based on four ladies scientists - Barbara, Margaret, Grace and Lucille. These ladies are super talented. In 1967, this team invents the first time machine. They first try to send small objects. Before making a public announcement the team decides to travel first and test the machine. But after the trial, one of the team members suffers the breakdown. This is the starting point of the entire mystery.
Ruby, grand-daughter of Barbara knows that her granny is one of the pioneers of the invention. But she also knows that Barbara never spoke about it. One day, Barbara receives a newspaper clipping about the death of a mysterious lady.
In 2018, Odette, a volunteer at the museum discovers a body in the museum, blood everywhere. The crime scene and the mystery hound her. The story has to find answers to two main questions who was murdered and who is a murderer? The author has very well brought different personalities of these four scientists. It is interesting to read how each character behaves in every situation. These time travellers face different psychological issues, which has been put forward by the author. For eg. as a time traveller, you can meet all your present and past selves at any time. I am not sure what will be my reaction if I am that time traveller.
The story also travels through different time spans. The reader needs to focus on the timeline while reading each chapter. The story has raised some interesting points about the time travel. Time travel may be easily possible in the future. The story creates a parallel legal framework to address different crimes considering the fact that a crime may happen different time span. Also, there is a possibility of playing with the evidence, change the crime scene. There is a need for a different currency for time travellers. The author has created a different glossary which is used by time travellers and easily understood by others who are not time travellers.
I thoroughly enjoyed this sci-fi murder mystery with a psychological angle to it. If you are a fan of murder mystery then this book is definitely for you.
I give 4 / 5 to this book.
The Psychology of Time Travel represents a fascinating thought experiment in how the use of time travel technology would effect the personalities and personal relationships of time travelers. A complex, non-linear narrative rich in interesting characters facing difficult choices is woven around a linear chain of events involving the protagonist. Along the way, the author portrays some pretty intricate details regarding the practical implications of time travel for such aspects of modern life such as money and law. Underneath an unfolding murder mystery and related plot twists that consume the reader, the author provides a profound exploration of the fragility of life and the power of love.
"We need fictional and real role models for women in science."
The year is 1967. Margaret, Barbara, Grace and Lucille are all very different women, but they have one massive commonality - together they discovered time travel.
"Margaret was a baroness turned cosmologist. Lucille had come from the Toxteth slums to make radio waves travel faster than light. Grace - who never gave the same account of her history twice - was an expert in the behaviour of matter. And the last was Barbara: the baby of the group.. She specialized in nuclear fission. All four women were combining their knowledge in a new, and unique, project."
When they were ready to debut their time machine to the Press, one of the women has a breakdown on national television. The others force her off the team to protect what they see as the integrity of their invention. Of course, this means that despite her contributions, one woman is left in obscurity while the other three team members go on to become famous.
Fast forward fifty years. Time travel has become BIG business.
Someone leaves a mysterious newspaper clipping for Ruby Rubello's "Grandma Bee," (Barbara who was the woman forced off the original team) Ruby becomes obsessed with the information contained in that article. This leads to fascinating and sometimes sinister events.
Because this is a time travel novel, it skips between multiple people and multiple years. It could easily have become confusing and difficult to follow for the reader, but author Kate Mascarenhas has somehow kept that from happening.
What I love the most about THE PSYCHOLOGY OF TIME TRAVEL is the fact that all the lead characters are female and, not only that, but they are from varying races and of diverse sexuality.
Despite the fact that this is her debut novel, the author is able to keep the story flowing perfectly despite multiple characters and multiple timelines which would be a challenge for even a seasoned author. This bodes well for her future projects and I can't wait to discover what she comes up with next.
I rate this book as 4 OUT OF 5 STARS ⭐⭐⭐⭐ and I recommend it to readers who love a good mystery as well as those who are interested in time travel and in books containing strong female characters
First, I would not class this as a thriller. It's got a bit of intrigue, and it's definitely scifi/fantasy, but there weren't many moments when I found myself in any sort of suspense. That said, this is a really well written and engaging novel, and I don't think I've ever read a book that so aptly matched its title. Yes, this is about the psychology of time travel, in a different version of our world, where it's done so regularly that it's not uncommon to run into multiple versions of yourself revisiting milestones in your own life. There is a mystery, but it's examined like everything else, as though it were in a lab, being discussed, and walked through, and it develops and comes to closure in a very calm way. I liked it, quite a lot, and I loved how she went into the ways time travel can affect people - from Bee, one of the founding developers, to her family and those around her. Glad I read it, and would recommend, if you're looking for a relaxing, yet interesting, book.
I received an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. Many thanks to NetGalley and Crooked Lane Books for the review copy. All opinions are my own and not influenced by the publisher.
Mascarenhas' debut novel is so delightfully fun! Reading the blurb, you'd expect the mystery to be the main thrust of this novel, and while it is certainly a major focal point, there's so much else going on that the mystery ends up feeling like a bonus. The novel has several POV characters in several different timelines, but Mascarenhas has made it fairly easy for the reader to keep the various characters straight.
The story begins with Ruby's "Granny Bee," or Barbara, in the 1960's as she and her colleagues are putting the finishing touches on their newly developed time travel technology. Barbara suffers a mental health crisis which seemed to have been triggered by time travel, and she is ousted from the group to prevent bad PR. If the public at large gets wind of a link between mental illness and time travel this early in the game, their careers will be over before they've truly begin. Barbara's contributions are swept under the rug and her colleagues rush onward to fame and fortune without her.
Fast forward to modern day, and the Conclave founded by Granny Bee's former friends now operates on its own terms, outside the laws of the land. The logic for this is that laws change over the years and that a time travel organization necessarily needs a constant set of a rules. Sound logic, perhaps, but an organization policing itself is dicey at best. The Psychology of Time Travel is as much about the corrupt politics of the Conclave and the twisted mindsets of long-term time travelers as it is about the mystery.
Mascarenhas asks what death would mean to a seasoned time traveler and explores that in this novel. If your father dies, but you can hop into a time machine and go on visiting him anyway, does he seem dead to you? Why should he seem any more or less alive than any other person if you can travel hundreds of years into the future and then pop back to 1973 later on that day? What happens to you when the only death that truly feels final is your own? And what happens if you already know the date and circumstances of that death?
The Psychology of Time Travel is a science fiction story wrapped in a thought experiment and tied together with a murder mystery. It features multiple female scientists as prominent characters and gives great attention to diversity. The world building is phenomenal and the story is infinitely engaging. I look forward to seeing what Mascarenhas writes next!
The Psychology of Time Travel is a surprising blend of mystery, thriller and sci-fi genre which gave this book an edge. This book comes with an intelligent story and excellent narration. I liked how boldly author explored the possibilities of meeting older selves from future, and it's impact on physical and mental health, not only this but its effects on emotional health of a person.
Character development in this book is smooth, I particularly liked character sketch of Margaret Norton, as I have special liking for characters which are strong and other character that I loved was Bee. Bee is a very relatable and loving character. However none of the other characters pleased me a lot. Pace of the story is just perfect.
In my opinion this book has very complex story line still author managed to do amazing job by neatly executing this story and taking care of complex dynamics of relationships between character.
ARC provided by publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
When I finished this book, all I could think was that I’d just read the literary equivalent of an ouroboros - the snake that devours its tale.
Very clever, this is the kind of book that you have to keep reading to let all the pieces fall into place.
This is a brilliant dystopian future; modern-day mystery novel and I couldn’t put it down. It is a great mixture of mystery, thriller, romance and science fiction and I absolutely loved the story.
Barbara, Margaret, Lucille and Grace are four friends who have designed and created a fully functioning time machine. However, after testing the machine a few times Barbara seems to have gone mad and is shipped away to a mental hospital, she publicly humiliates the pioneers and is never allowed to return. The novel skips to the future where Barbara is now a grandmother, her dreams of being a famous scientist/inventor are over and so is her friendship with the others. Her granddaughter Ruby has a keen interest in her grandmother’s past, but Barbara won’t talk. Until one day a note from the future turns up. It is from Grace her old friend and shows a newspaper clipping of an inquest into a death of an elderly lady which will happen in 5 months’ time. A warning from an old friend from the future, but who is this old lady and why does she get murdered?
The novel is told through a multitude of perspectives across different time zones. It was a very modern-day murder mystery… how can you catch the killer that could be anywhere in any time? Who is the elderly lady that got killed? Is it one of the original pioneers? The body is unrecognisable and there is no way to identify her. Everyone is a suspect because you may have killed someone in the future and not even know. Not knowing who did this kept me reading and wanting to know who not only the murder was but also the dead lady. There were so many unanswered questions throughout the book that I needed to know the answers to just like the characters did too. At times the novel was slightly mind boggling, more character’s perspectives were added, and the multitude of time zones and characters made it tricky to keep up with. Though Mascarenhas does a good job to keep it as easy as possible making sure each chapter has a character name and year they are situated in, I feel like other authors may have turned this into a tangled web of confusion and chaos. The fact it was slightly confusing I felt helped the novel as it reflected the mystery of the story and confusion of the characters.
As the title of the novel suggests the main themes across the novel was mental health and how time travel effects how people think. At the beginning of the novel Barbara has a breakdown so when Margaret continues to build up the time travel company she makes it very clear that new employees must go through vigorous testing to make sure they are “mentally stable”. It seems that time travel messes with people’s minds, especially when it comes to knowing their own deaths and relative’s deaths. Some characters ended up suffering from anxiety, eating disorders, depression and OCD, if this was shown in any way they were fired immediately. The way they shipped Barbara off when she had a breakdown was so sad, she got no help or support and that really upset me. Mental health is such an important thing these days and the fact that this book let people suffer and didn’t help them was very frustrating and sometimes hard to read. There are a lot of characters throughout that seem mentally unstable but as the novel unfolds you can see that Margaret plays a lot of mind games and tricks to toy with people’s emotions. When the job is already high risk for mental health Margaret really does not help her staff, and you can see what kind of person she becomes.
Another thing I loved about this novel was that it focussed solely on female characters. The pioneers were all women and there were hardly any male parts in it at all. I am not a feminist, but it was nice to read a novel where women were the leaders of a scientific invention/breakthrough and the book had lots of strong, independent women. Such as Odette, although she suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder she wanted a job at the Conclave to see if she could solve the murder alone, her father was against this and thought it would give her another breakdown. But Odette carries on and doesn’t let the past faze her in her passionate journey to solving the murder.
I highly recommend The Psychology of Time Travel, it is engaging, unique, thrilling and clever. It provokes a lot of ideas and debates which I always love in a fictional novel. This is Kate Mascarenhas’ debut novel and I think it is fantastic, I will definitely be reading move of her work in the future I feel like she is and author to watch out for!
I've read a lot of time travel novels. Funny ones, chaotic ones, good ones, bad ones. Almost always, there are rules within each little universe about time travel. One of the most common is that you can't exist in the same time twice. But what if you could? In PTT, you can. So "silver" versions of yourself can have lunch with "greener" versions. You might attend your own birthday parties, repeatedly. You know when you're going to die. There is only one rule, that you can't tell earlier selves about the future, and it's defined as treason and punishable by death. However, you might get out of it if you get a judge from the 24th century, when the rule of law had become subsumed by superstition and religion and if you're lucky, you'll get an easy "trial by ordeal" and survive.
After time travel is invented by four women, and one goes mad, time travel becomes a hugely powerful institution, the Conclave, where time travelers live by their own set of rules. It's a little sketchy on what all of these time travelers do, but at least many are detectives, going back in time to observe and record crimes. The crime that is the center of the book is intertwined with the time travel corporation.
I found the book very engaging, although I can't say that I really empathized or connected with any of the characters. You do have to pay attention to when each chapter takes place, though, or you'll get confused, but the crisp writing makes it very unmuddled and clear. The book is a mystery and science fiction. Also, it wasn't until after I finished the book that I realized almost all the characters were female. Feminist fiction at its best.
*** I was given a copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review***
I feel obliged to start off this review with an admission. Anyone who has read my background or even some of my reviews will know straight away that I am a HUGE sucker for Time Travel stories, I just love them!! This one was unique and did not disappoint. The Psychology of Time Travel is many things but it is glaring a mixed bag of genres that will resonate with many demographics. These include: Mystery, Science Fiction, Feminist Fiction, LGBT friendly, and of course Timey Wimey bits. Warning: This book might not be for you if you are using it as a sleep aid or to zone out. There are some potential sticky spots like the chapters jumping around eras/dates and POVs which can get a bit muddled with who is connected to whom and when major events take place BUT in the end it is pretty easy to suss out if you're paying attention.
This book is most decidedly pro female with almost no male characters in sight. The women depicted are not only interesting but absolutely brilliant! The plot is rife with hot topics like various mental health issues and hope to deal with them in extremely high stress situations, Love relationships of all forms, Death, Time Travel and its unlimited possibilities/ messy bag of entanglements. How are paradoxes avoided? How are Time Traveler crimes overseen, investigated and persecuted? How are various relationships navigated when two people are from two different era? Etc...
The world development was unique and extremely interesting. The relationships were written quite well and felt genuine, so much so I shed a non allergy related tear near the end at Grace's gift to Ruby... the last reveal was sweet as well. The antagonist was robotic yet dastardly and vile and the Protagonist? Well, there were a few but all the different voices joined together nicely which is a tricky thing to pull off with so many differing POVs. I will say that there was A LOT crammed into this Who-Done-It which, being overly complex may or may not have worked to its advantage. Personally, I enjoyed it.
God, I loved this. Easily my favourite book I've read this year.
The blurb mentioned it being for fans of Emily St. John Mandel, and I can easily see why. Multiple narratives from different characters at different points in time, slowly converging and tying into each other. I know of lots of people who loved Station Eleven and I urge them to read this.
The world that Kate Mascarenhas has created feels so real - it blends in so naturally to our real one. She has thought of so many issues that could occur from the reality of time travel that I couldn't have even begun to think of addressing, and covered them well.
One recommendation I have is that you don't leave many days in between reading sessions - I did and due to the growing number of characters mentioned (who are often, due to the nature of time travel, in a different point in their - or other characters' - timeline to where you last heard from them) it took me a while to remember all of the connecting threads at times. This isn't a criticism of the book, this is a criticism of my multi-day periods of not reading it!
Thank you to NetGalley and Crooked Lane Books for the copy to review!
The Psychology Of Time Travel Is Kate Mascarenhas Debut Novel.
What Got Me To Pick It Up? Not Gonna Lie It Was The Cover I LOVE PRETTY BOOK COVERS. Don't Judge Me!!
So I Basically Went In Without Knowing Absolutely Nothing About This Book.
What Drew Me In?
Time Travel Storyline
Women Empowerment YES Women Get A Front Row Seat In This One Ladies
And It Is Incredibly Well Written.
I Loved The Book And Can't Wait To Read More From Kate.
WOULD DEFINITELY RECOMMEND
In the first chapter of this book, we are in 1967 and time travel has just been invented. The four scientists are excited, hopeful, full of dreams. But when one of them, Barbara, goes into a manic depressive episode that is broadcast on a BBC interview, she never again is able to time travel or go back to her work. Fast forward to 2017 and Barbara's granddaughter Ruby is just now finding out more details about her past and why her mom hates time travel. Then, it's 2018 and a body has been discovered in a room locked from the inside, shot to death.
Yes, all those things are connected.
So welcome to the review of one of my favorite sci-fi novels ever: where time travel , the economy and culture it generates are the center of this novel, which weaves different plots together, exploring human nature, relationships, mental health, power. This book has great elements of what constitutes a good sci-fi to me: its science is interesting and well-researched, the technology is inserted seamlessly into people's lives (there are toys that use time travel, there are dolls with the scientists, there are several "trash" horror time travel stories, there is slang...), but what makes this novel really awesome is the human element of it. All the characters (which are mostly women) are so complex, interesting, different, smart. Their lives change and connect with one another all the time.
And the plot twists! There are so many (but not too many) and I doubt you'll see many of them coming. The novel is fast paced and so much happens, but I wish it was never over. I could just read it forever and never get tired of it. I'm already planning to buy it in paperback (which comes out today, when this post is live!) and re-read it, because it's that amazing (if you don't know - I hardly ever re-read books).
Everything is fantastic and I have no complaints at all. I also particularly love that there are so many women in this novel. When have I last read a book with women scientists as main characters? And with time travel!
I highly recommend this book, even if you're not that much of a sci-fi fan, trust me: this is so worth it for the character-driven plot, which is also fast-paced and so, so full of awesome twists. You will not be disappointed!
This book was amazing. It had twist and turns I didn't expect and it went RIGHT into my favorites list when I finished. I am not sure what I expected, but I didn't expect this to happen. I loved seeing the different women and how they were all portrayed and how time travel affected them all. It was all in all a good book, and the author has done an AMAZING job on this. I would consider this to be a feminist novel, and I regard it as such - and I am so thankful for the opportunity to be able to read it. It was so much more than I expected and it was wonderful.
I really enjoyed this refreshing, original novel. All the best of time travel in a compelling mystery. For fans of Elan Masterai and "The Calculating Stars". I loved the relationships between all of the women across time. My only regret? I would have liked a little more science, and more of the early days of the invention of time travel. Perhaps a prequel where we learn how this disparate group of women ended up together? Thank you
The psychology of Time travel by Kate Mascarenhas is a truly exciting and amazing story. Not my first book about time travel but definitely the most unique one. I suppose the reason for that is that this book focuses on the effect time travel causes.
The other thing I really liked was the story itself. How do you investigate a crime when you can go back and you actually could prevent it but you're not allowed to change the past? Because who knows how dire the consequences could be.
It would've been fun to find out more about the future world. Especially Grace's wings...
Would you travel through time to meet future worlds and future selfs? If the answer is yes this book is for you.
This is MY kind of time travel novel! I love every bit of this book and hope this is the start of a fantastic series which could easily be built. For a first novel, Kate Mascarenhas has truly outdone herself and shines. Bravo.
I went into this book with no expectations, and came out really pleased. In a forenote, the author described wanting to write sci-fi with more women, more queer women, and more women of color, and her debut does just what she claims.
It was strangely and powerfully refreshing to read a book that was ... not absent of male characters, but where the male characters took up very little space, and were never in the spotlight -- once again, I realized how uncommon that is, how the reverse is so often true.
I'm going to avoid details, but this is the story of four very different women who become time travelers -- and then, it's the story of several more women who become connected to them in various and sundry ways. There were times, as I was reading, when I thought that Mascarenhas' writing was a tad thin, a little bit more "tell", rather than "show" -- but the book made up for that with her really excellent characterizations of all the distinct women, and their different personalities and goals, as well as with the thoughtful and half-creepy half-hilarious worldbuilding around the culture of time travel.
I would especially recommend this title for fans of Kristin Cashore's Jane Unlimited; and I would seek out more work from Mascarenhas in the future in a heartbeat. Many thanks to NetGalley for allowing me to read an advanced copy.
Stunning debut. Mystery, action, science fiction, fantasy. A penetrating portrait of what could happen if time travel were possible. Thanks to Crooked Lane Books and to NetGalley for providing me with a galley in exchange for my honest opinion.
The Psychology of Time Travel by Kate Mascarenhas. New York, Crooked Lane Books, 2019.
I was intrigued and even riveted by this exceptional debut novel. To tell this story, the characters, the main story and a number of side stories jump back and forth through 1967-69, 1973, 1982, 1994, 1999 and 2017-2019. The writing style was appealing and easy to read and the plot unlike others I’ve encountered.
Four young female scientists discover how to manage time travel. A researcher goes rogue, derailing a promising research career. The research centre appears to become more important for its commercial, economic and political potential than for generating empirical knowledge. There is a romance with lovers from different time periods, a murder that could be time travel related in danger of becoming a cold case and am incredibly flawed child's toy.
Characters can move back and forth through these different stories intentionally seeking to engage with each other and with themselves at different stages of their lives, this book was much more complex than other time travel fiction that I have read. I was struck by the level of reference detail supporting the book. The author created a working set of time travel rules for the book that included, for example, that travel could be back and forth but limited to eras post time travel discovery only. And that the actions of time travellers could not affect outcomes other than aiding understanding. One appendix has a time travel terminology, and another has psychometric test questions.
For credibility, I needed more details on the academic qualifications, experience, requirements and backgrounds of the four young scientists, and more about their research program. I think it is unlikely that four young female scientists would have such independence in 1967. Though their sloppy time research protocol, questionable ethics and absence of occupational health and safety oversight may have been typical of that time, I found these deficits jarring. So, although I read it twice, I did not love it. I will certainly remember it and was almost tempted to do some academic level analysis on it. I will probably will read it again.
Disclosure: I received a review copy of The Psychology of Time Travel free via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
In 1965, time travel ignites Barbara’s manic depression, and the other pioneers—ambitious Margaret, compassionate Lillian, and social butterfly Grace—leave her behind to form The Conclave, an autonomous organization commercializing time travel. Multiple storylines converge to determine the identity of the woman found dead of four bullet wounds in a locked room. The investigation for this unique whodunit plays out in various timelines with characters’ ages often not corresponding chronologically. There’s manipulation, subterfuge, and espionage afoot throughout the nation and throughout time. The time travel details are concrete, with the fuel posing a danger if not handled appropriately. There’s even a time travel glossary included at the end, which makes one try that much harder to buy into the concept. Macarenhas gives the reader glimpses into the thoughts of characters, providing more depth to a story that might easily go astray with so much time-hopping chapters. Readers who like speculative fiction with compelling characters and complex relationships will appreciate this story that readily lends oneself to suspend belief, a realistic time travel story, if you will. It’s definitely worth the time! Ha! I was fortunate to receive a copy from the publisher through Net Galley.
My review is scheduled to post on my blog October 15, when I will also share on Goodreads, Facebook, and Twitter, with review to be posted on B&N on launch date.
Many thanks to NetGalley and Crooked Lane for the chance to read this ARC.
If we finally managed to create a time-travel machine, how would it be? What the world and its society would become? What would be the rules of it, and its purpose? Surely everything would be possible now, since everything would be known by the time-traveler: to prevent sickness, conflicts, pain, or even crimes? That's what matters in that book; a mysterious woman is found dead, her body unrecognisable. But with all this technology, how is it even possible not to know?
We follow several POVs, most of all the ones of the four time machine's pioneers: Margaret, Barbara, Grace and Lucille, but also others such as Ruby, Odette, Piper...; Barbara being separated from the whole project after a breakdown, we still continue to follow her interesting POV and the evolution of her creation through her eyes and others, and see what's coming next.
I loved that book; I was first drawn to it with its cover, which I find really pretty and reveals its signification when we finally finish reading it. The story does alternate with chapters from different periods of time and characters, but it did not disturb me at all, on the contrary. Plus, all POVs are females and of different sexualities, which I really liked!
<REVIEW>THE PSYCHOLOGY OF TIME TRAVEL
💬: I received a free digital ARC of the book via Net Galley in exchange for an honest review)
This is an unusual type of book for me. Usually I don’t go for books that don’t have a romance plot as the main one, but when I read the synopsis I was intrigued by the different way the author would be exploring time travelling. The story divided itself in three timelines: 1967, 2017 and 2018 and each one of these were interesting in a different way. All of them had the thriller, suspense and mystery aspect mixed with the mind analysis of people that start to time travel, how they perceive the world after knowing the future.
In 1967 we see four women perfecting the time travel machine and transforming themselves as the pioneers of something that would change the lives of many people and the world. One of them has a breakdown after time traveling, making the other three realize that people who travels time should be followed by doctor and psychologists, so it doesn't happen again. Rebecca, the one that had the breakdown, is asked to leave the organization and her friends totally forget about her. We see the this organization become reality, The Conclave, where they administer all things related to Time Travel, having one of the pioneers as the leader (Margaret). When I discover that Margaret was the leader I laughed because I already didn’t like her, and now they give her power? Of course things would go south.
In 2017 we follow Ruby and her grandmother that was the pioneer who had the breakdown and was “let go” of the organization. Ruby wants to seek answers about the time travelling and about what happened with her grandmother back then and she starts to get to know the other fellow pioneers. One of them scares her, and the other she starts to love.
While in 2018 we see Odette, a girl that finds a dead body and needs to deal with the trauma of it. She meets Ruby and then realizes that what happened with the dead body is related to The Conclave. So she starts to obsess about it and starts her own investigation, finding out more about the pioneers and how the things are dealt with inside the conclave. She becomes a Time Travel so she can be inside the organization and find the identity of the person that died and who is the murderer.
The interesting about this book is how time travel changes the mindset of people, how it totally made them like a robot after some time using the machine, a cold hearted person. The Time Travelers starts to get numb about feelings, they don’t understand death, for example, because they can go back in time and see the person again and alive. Time travelling makes death obsolete and time travellers dangerous.
This is very clearly geared toward fans of Hidden Figures, which is not a bad thing. The book is woman-centered and brazenly feminist, without sacrificing the science and complexity of science fiction.(it's almost like women can understand complex scientific concepts!) All of the main characters in the novel are women, including both women of color and queer women. Their capabilities and intelligence are never questioned. We follow them through their careers, seeing the effects their successes (or lack thereof) affect them over time.
It also wasn't remotely what I was expecting, which is both good and bad. The multitude of perspectives and timeline shifts aren't particularly confusing but they do make it hard to sink into the story. The mystery is well done. It's a rather original take on time travel, which is no small feat these days. I was unsurprised to read that the author has PhDs in literary studies and psychology. She obviously thought quite a bit about how time travel would actually affect the brain and the psyche, which isn't something you see a lot in time travel novels. But the whole thing feels maybe a little bit flat -- a little too perfectly well-thought out and plotted, like a psychological experiment. Nevertheless, this is a unique and engaging twist on the time travel novel.
I am so impressed how Kate Mascarenhas wove this story together!!! She incorporated time travel and in her story of time travel they can see versions of themselves past or present. She also had characters interact with progeny of the first four women scientists that created time travel. Quick chapters, whodunnit, aalmost all female characters, a lgbtq relationship, some new time travel vernacular... lots of balls to juggle but she did it wonderfully.
Thank you NetGalley for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.
Reading this debut novel was a happy surprise. It was tightly plotted and well written. Time travel has been invented and successfully tested in the opening chapter, but one woman ‘pioneer’ develops a mental health issue. At first this causes many questions about the safety of the technology. The person who ends up heading the newly formed institution for time travel is paranoid about bad publicity and consults with a psychologist about testing of applicants. From there on we get multiple viewpoints from past, current and future people who are emotionally impacted one way or another by time travel.
This is a novel take on time travel, written with interesting insights into how one might experience watching the death of your family and friends one minute, and then returning to an age where they are still alive.
My only critique would be related to the number of characters. They are all important to the plot but having a list of characters would have been very helpful. 4.5 /5 stars!
I've always enjoyed reading books about time travel and this book puts an interesting spin on the concept. It really delves into what the consequences would be of being able to easily travel through time. I was intrigued by the mystery/thriller part of this book as well which kept me turning pages.
Female led story about science and time travel? Count me in!
Very much enjoyed this book as it turned across time and multiple characters. The story and the mystery made this a very enjoyable read. It could get a bit confusing (as multiple time traveling selves probably do) but the author created language to solve some of the confusion regarding multiple selves.
Thanks NetGalley for the ARC
The Psychology of Time Travel
by Kate Mascarenhas
I received this copy from NetGalley for an honest Review:
I was very excited to get this book and couldn't wait to start, I loved the premise of time travel and the idea of 4 women at the very start of this discovery; that being said I liked the story, I did, but I found it hard to relate to any of the women, maybe Grace...the mystery was okay, I figured it out quite early. I enjoyed the changing POV & the different times. It was definitely readable and I am glad I had the opportunity to read it.
An original and good story but a bit hard to follow at times. It moves between dates and different perspectives with a large cast of characters so at times is a little confusing. Four women scientists, in the mid 60’s, develop a time travelling machine. They have tested it and travelled through time themselves. But one, Barbara, suffers a breakdown in public just as they are going to go public with their machine. The other three feel they have no alernative but to delete her from their invention so that they can maintain credibility. It was very interesting how the concept of time travel was developed.
This is the third time travel book I have read in a row. First, I read The Time Machine by H.G. Wells, a timeless (pun intended) classic. Next, I read an upcoming release called Here and Now and Then by Mike Chen (review to follow), and last I read The Psychology of Time Travel. I didn't seek out three time travel novels to read in row, dare I say, they found me? Maybe my future self was planting these books in my life for some reason? I'm kidding. But really...?
The Psychology of Time Travel was different from the other two books in one very specific way. The genius scientists who change the world when they invent time travel are ALL women! Margaret was a baroness turned cosmologist, Lucille came from the slums and wound up making radio waves travel faster than light. Then there was Grace, an expert in the behavior of matter, and Barbara who specialized in nuclear fission. Between the four of them, they created a miracle of science. The day they tell the general public about their stunning break through, Barbara has a mental breakdown on live television causing the four scientists to remove her from the group. Barbara gets well, then goes on to live a normal life while the remaining three continue their work. Work which later becomes an entire network of time travelers and a world wide organization. The rules and laws created for this very new and amazing technology are overseen by the ever increasingly powerful and ruthless creator Margaret. She will stop at nothing to protect her creation, even if it means putting her goals before the well being of her fellow scientists.
One day, a woman's body is found in a room locked from the inside at a local toy museum. It is unclear who the mystery woman is, and the young lady who found her finds herself unable to move forward until she figures out who she is,and why she was killed. Around the same time, Barbara, the scientist who was booted from the group years earlier, receives a mysterious folder paper rabbit. The rabbit is an inside joke between the group of scientists, but why would they be reaching out to her after all this time. When she unfolds the rabbit, she is startled to discover it is a death certificate from the future. Even more startling is the fact that there is no name listed. Who is going to die?
This book was a ton of fun to read. I definitely found myself going cross-eyed a few times reading the Science-y parts, but one of my favorite things about speculative fiction is reading all of the details an author has put in about the world they have created. It is so cool to read about the future and to visualize the cool new technological advances that will be made past my lifetime through the writers eyes.
I read a lot of books that sound outside of a casual readers taste. My Mom always looks at me sideways when I recommend a book such as this one to her. But each time she gives a unique book a try, she is always pleasantly surprised. So, pick this one up! I think you will also be surprised. :)
Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for this Advanced Readers Edition of The Psychology of Time Travel.
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This book is about four women who discover the means to travel through time as well as the resulting murder and mystery that this cause to occur in the future.
I loved this book so much, it was full of smart, creative, diverse and interesting women whose lives all became changed by time travel. The murder mystery gives the plot a level of intrigue and mystery and I enjoyed how all the perspectives and time lines merged and overlapped in time to explain the events leading to the murder. I like the way the book imagined what if would be like if we could travel through time and explored both the positive as well as negative effects it could have on the individual as well as those that did not travel through time.
I would definitely recommend picking this one up, I couldn't put it down.
This was a very enjoyable page turner. Starting with the women scientists who made time travel a reality and then flipping forward to experience the implications of that as we work through a mystery. It's interesting to see how the book plays around with the idea of how time travel would work if you let go of the idea of paradoxes and instead focus on the psychological impacts. I would have enjoyed more of that, actually, and more of the societal impacts - what happens in a world when information from the future can bleed back into the past? How does culture change as a result? Maybe a sequel can quench this curiosity?
Four female scientists, each bringing their own special piece to the puzzle, created the first time machine in 1967. However, one of the four, Barbara, doesn’t continue on the same path as the original three women.
The book about time travel does a lot of it—it takes a bit to get into the stories as you are following a few points of view and different timelines. But I promise you that once you get into it and stick with it you won’t be able to put it down. The connections and interwoven layers of time and space all come together to form a wonderful first novel for the author.
The Psychology of Time Travel
By Kate Mascarenhas
due February 2019
Its 1967. Four female scientists create the first time travel machine, each woman a pioneer in her scientific field. They begin to believe that time travel could have far greater significance to our lives than we could have imagined, and it could change how we all live.
Fifty years later, time travel has become big business. Ruby Rebello becomes fascinated with her Grandmothers work in science, but no one can provide any details. Ruby finds a newspaper clipping from the future that foretells of the murder of an unidentified woman Ruby becomes convinced is her Grandmother.
This engrossing speculative fiction was absolutely riveting and fantastic. The development of the time travel machine-called the Conjurers Candybox that teleports into the future; The Conclave-a group that studies the impact of time travel, gave me a new perspective on time travel. The Conclave could impact lives by making relationships seem pre-arranged when you can check in advance who your partner(s) will be and the outcome before you even knew the person. You could start to see death as an inconvenience when you know the date people will die, being sure to add the date to your calendar so you don't forget their funeral, and can leave the day free.
The diversity and polyamorous characters added much perspective to the development of the Candybox as well.
This is a fascinating, rich novel of intrigue and wonder. Written with a beautiful and timely prose and message this speculative fiction and murder mystery at its best.
It includes a glossary that could stand alone its so fascinating and a Time Travel Conclave Battery of Psychometric Test with 10 questions to see if your a good candidate for time travel.
Get This Feb 2019.
Thanks to Crooked Lane and net galley for this ARC
Quirky time travel murder mystery!
What more could you want in a book. It's a debut novel and it was a very intriguing concept.
There's time travel, race and sexual orientation issues, mental illness and romance. It sounds like a mishmash of subjects but it all ties together very nicely. Gives reason to pause and think if we as a society have the skills and knowledge to build time travelling machines and if we did could we handle it? Would you want to know the exact date of your death and HOW you were going to die? How would we react to meeting our future selves and our yet unborn children? Would we get confused trying to figure out which time was the true time? Wouldn't they in fact be all true, just different?
At the end of the book the author drafted what she calls a Time Travel Psychometric Test. Ten (10) questions and your answers deem if you are suitable candidate for time travel.
Very interesting book which was a quick read that I couldn't put down.
I received this ARC from the publisher Crooked Lane Books and NetGalley in exchange for an unbiased honest review.
The Psychology of Time Travel by Kate Mascarenhas is a time traveling story! It really took me a while to figure out the various characters and sub-plots. (all perfectly normal for time travel stories). But, once you dive in.. and get it fixed in your mind where the story is going.. you can follow along.
My Mom was a psychologist.. so, this story was one that I wanted to see the unique spin that the title seemed to imply. And, the book did deliver. There is a price every human pays just for existing.. and there surely would be a price one would pay.. if one's story is erased from existence.
Without giving away too much of the story.. just give it a chance.. and stick with it.. you'll enjoy the tale!
3.5 stars--somewhere between liked and really liked.
I adore time travel books, and this one has a lot of fascinating details--time travelers regularly hang out with their past or future selves (or past/future friends and family). They develop their own slang (included in an index!) and occasionally return with spontaneously materialized items--books or small trinkets--on them. So cool!
It also deals with the specific psychological issues suffered by time travelers--becoming hardened to death (why mourn a parent's passing, for example, when you can just pop into the past and visit?) or feeling out of time.
The characters were likable, and overall this was a breezy, very fast read. I wish it had a touch more depth (especially when dealing with serious issues like murder, mental health, mortality, etc.), but still greatly enjoyed this book--especially how it tied multiple plot threads together.
I received this review copy from the publisher on NetGalley. Thanks for the opportunity to read and review; I appreciate it!
I’m not sure what it is about myself and time travel books, but I’m particularly drawn to them. I LOVE a well written time travel story, and The Psychology of Time Travel certainly did not disappoint! What I loved most about this one was how plausible the author made it all seem, it felt very well thought out. The murder mystery aspect kept me on my toes the entire time, and the character relationships were very well constructed! Also, loved that the entire book was filled with badass female characters! Definitely recommend this one!!
I finished this book and immediately wished I had some time travel ability so I could go back and make up for the sleep I lost, staying up to find out what happens.
What a unique take on time travel! I loved the nearly all female cast, the inventiveness of moving through time, and how two women, Ruby and Odette, are at the heart of a really strange murder mystery. It begs so many questions, particularly--how can you kill a time traveler if they can always move ahead and see how they will die? A fantastic, fast-paced read. I can't wait to see what Mascarenhas' will do next!
This story is about friendship, love, family, mental health, science, betrayal, fate, death, anxiety, soul searching, and a whodunit all wrapped up in time travel. It has strong, smart female characters, an LGBTQ aspect, and a storyline that really made me wonder: Would traveling to the future impact how you live right now?
I love the world that Kate Mascarenhas has created with time travel. It's very believable for those of us that are not scientists. The highlights for me include the Conclave, which is the organization that manages time travel, and its fascinating rules. Workers could travel back or forward in time. You can meet your older/younger self and have a conversation. You have glimpses into your future. Fate is eliminated. Everyone knows how and when they're going to die.
This is an elaborate story with intricate LGBTQ relationships. At first, I felt that I needed to take notes to track all of the characters, their relationships, and plotlines. There are so many! It's definitely different than what I normally read and a little bit out of my comfort zone, but I'm glad that I had the opportunity to read it.
This book is magical and beautifully written. I don't delve into the world of magical realism or science fiction very often, but this one is a fantastic new spin on an age-old concept. The twists were unusual and unexpected, because they defied rational logic.
The author's writing reminds me of Alice Hoffman's The Rules of Magic. If you like that book, you'll like this one too.
I finally had a chance to read this (sorry!) and honestly, I freaking loved it. It was different and weird but very intelligent, made a great attempts at being diverse and was an interesting concept that totally grabbed my attention. I was super invested with Ruby and her grandmother and would honestly love a sequel maybe from Graces perspective or Lucille.
The psychology of time travel is my favourite book for ages. I love the way it weaves back and forward like the subject. It’s believable and it’s compelling. It’s well written and I was gutted when it was done. Perfect Christmas gift!
I had the opportunity to read The Psychology of Time Travel by Kate Mascarenhas, having received a free advanced digital copy by NetGalley and Crooked Lane Books in exchange for an honest review. I can honestly say it was one of the most enjoyable books I’ve read recently and I wasn’t ready for it to be over. When I read the last sentence it was with reluctance that I left the world that had been so intricately created with fascinating characters who both intrigued and, in some cases, repelled me.
Mascarenhas has created some of the most complex characters I’ve read in awhile. The book is filled primarily with strong female characters who are brilliant, accomplished, and successful. It begins with four scientists who invent a time travel machine which ultimately results in the creation of a time travel consortium that is run by one of the four. The book details how both ageing and the unique properties of being able to travel through time shape each woman’s personality and decision making. One might say it demonstrates the idea of becoming yourself, only more so as you age and in this instance how that is affected by the unique aspects of traveling into the future and encountering one’s future self and/or selves.
In addition to this personality study, there is a mystery that is paramount to the book and provides a framework for some of the time travel that is detailed in the story. The mystery is interesting, but is secondary to the overall story. It is the reason many of the characters are detailed in the book, and their purpose for some of the actions they take, but never is it presented as a puzzle for the reader to solve. Rather, it is something that is revealed to the reader as they travel along on the various journeys taken by different characters in the book. This approach increases the reader’s opportunity to sit back and enjoy the journey along with the characters in the book.
Early on we learn the problems time travel creates for one of the four inventors and how it places her on the outside of what had once been a tight-knit group of friends. We also see how one of the four pushes this ousting, and how her personality becomes more controlling over the years. We also get to watch a third member of the group as she moves through time and watch as her personality develops along different lines with perhaps a greater sense of accountability. A fourth member of the group doesn’t get as much mention i this novel and remains a question regarding how time travel and her participation in the invention may or may not have changed her.
Throughout the book there are some unique situations, such as individuals being allowed to see and interact with their future selves. This aspect of time travel creates some peculiar issues, particularly in how laws are developed and what methods are used when a law within the world of the time travelers has been broken. Add to this development a push by the head of the time traveler’s organization to desensitize travelers to certain aspects of life and death and you have the premise of an excellent novel.
I wasn’t ready for this book to be over when I read the final sentence. There were several characters with whom I would have enjoyed spending more time. The world in which they live has almost infinite possibilities because they can travel through time and thus it is only restricted by the limits of the author’s imagination. The best thing I can say about the end is that while it was a definite finish to this particular story, I could see many future stories being developed that might include both these same characters and others who, based on the results of this book, would also be well-drawn and complex in their development.
I could not put down this book! I finished it in one sitting because I have no will power and I had to know how it ended.
You know those book memes that are always asking which fictional setting would you like to live in? Well, my answer is this one.
This take on time travel was so unique and it's a mystery and it is full of strong female characters who each are main characters in their own right.
The prose is sharp and intelligent, but you don't have be a scientist to understand the basic mechanics of how time travel works in this universe.
What really stands out to me are the complicated relationships that are woven through the story. The actions in this book are all high stakes and no details are extraneous. If you want to figure out the whodunnit and howdunnit, you need to be paying attention the whole time. I didn't quite figure it out before the reveal, but I had a lot of fun trying to puzzle it out as I went along.
I find it pretty amazing that this book is a debut. I was almost turned away by the fact that is classified as a thriller, and many thrillers are nearly rote at this point, but I'm glad I was not. It feels more like literary fiction than a thriller, or even sci-fi.
I would recommend this to anyone who enjoys intricate stories with strong female leads, even if science fiction or thrillers are not usually your thing.
I received an ARC from Crooked Lane Books, via NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review.
Expected date of publication is February 12, 2019
Gah! I couldn’t get enough of this book! I devoured it in one day. I’ve been hooked on time travel books for ages and I loved this new take on a sometimes tired genre. Now that I think about how time travel would affect a mind I can’t believe there hasn’t been a more in-depth discussion about it in the pervious books I’ve read.
It was refreshing and well thought out. I also loved that it was a group of amazing women that made the discovery, but most importantly was used and managed by women and not taken over by men like most inventions/books seem to be.
I loved the characters and the time travel story but then throw in a murder mystery and I just couldn’t be happier. And did you see that cover 😍😍
I love a good sci-fi book with time travel and I'm very interested in human psychology so this book was right up my alley. It introduced some very interesting time travel concepts and the mystery kept me reading quickly. I loved that time travel was created by four women and it was interesting how they ceased contact with one of their own to save face after sweet Barbara lost her mind while time traveling. It was such a lovely book, I enjoyed everything about it EXCEPT for all of the point of view changes, which did make this book confusing at times.
Thank you so much to Crooked Lane books for the eARC of The Psychology of Time Travel!
I have always been fascinated by the idea of time travel, both by the physics involved and the philosophical questions it raises. This book dives right into what all aspects of life - the law, love, physiology, would look like if we lived in a world where time travel was possible. It feels like you’re reading a real account, though I knew it was fiction- the story was written in such a way that I could totally suspend my disbelief.
Perhaps my favorite aspect was that all of the pioneers of time travel in the book were women. They were strong and flawed and totally human in their portrayal.
If you’ve ever been intrigued by the idea of time travel, you should definitely read The Psychology of Time Travel!
This is a wildly original book with a plot that folds in on itself like an origami sculpture. Set in a universe where time travel is not only possible but commonplace, the world looks very much like our own, other than some people travel through time. It doesn’t go too much into the Big Rules (seriously, I lost count of the times a bootstrap paradox occurs) but it delves deeply into the culture. There is special lingo, there are practical rules to follow and the same person can and does hang out with younger and older versions of themselves. It reminded me a little of The Man in the Empty Suit, one of my favorite time travel novels in that regard. Like I mentioned, time travel is normal here and the novel reads like Hidden Figures or many of the historical science books that are so popular. The story goes from past to present and most of the events are explained sooner or later, even if the cause-effect relationship is not always clear. This novel is also full of rich, complex women who know what they want and how to get it. Men are almost an afterthought and relegated to husbands and fathers. This is one of those novels that makes you think and that you need to read carefully to find all the clues. Yet, it’s not confusing at all (which is the main issue with time travel in my opinion). As a bonus, there is a questionnaire at the end to see if you have the potential to be a time traveler. I got a high score, now if the Doctor would just choose me as his companion…
I chose to read this book and all opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased. Thank you, NetGalley/Crooked Lane Books!
I loved going on this journey with Odette, Ruby, Barbara, Grace, and more. The world was very well established and grounded even when discussing big ideas like time travel. The mystery element helped propel the story forward, but there were wonderful character moments along the way. There was a deliberate choice made to make most of the characters women, even ancillary characters, and it's a lovely subliminal feminist statement.
In Cumbria, England, 1967, Barbara, Margaret, Lucille, and Grace invent time travel without thinking of how it would alter their lives and the world. The Psychology of Time Travel is an exciting female-driven, murder mystery.
Fifty years after inventing time travel, Barbara receives a notice of a death that will happen on January 6th, 2018. Her granddaughter Ruby agrees to help her grandmother make amends with Margaret in order to gain access to the time travel machines. On January 6th, 2018 Odette, an archaeology student volunteering at a toy museum, finds a dead body that the police aren't able to identify. Odette becomes overwhelmed by the mysterious death and decides she'll feel better if she can figure out who the dead woman is. After a strange visit from a younger Grace, Ruby is convinced it is her grandmother Barbara who will die.
The narrative tackles a lot of issues like friendship, marriage, betrayal, bullying, sexuality, loss, aging, and mortality. The characters have distinct personalities, desires, fears, strengths and flaws. My favorite characters are Grace and Ruby.
The Psychology of Time Travel is one of the most thought-provoking books I've ever read. Unique, creative, it questions how time travel would impact mental health, relationships, business, history, and language.
The first time I started reading the novel I felt incredibly lost a third of the way in. I went back to the beginning and took notes on the times mentioned at the beginning of each chapter and names of characters (there are a lot) and that helped wrap my mind around the story so I could enjoy myself. The plot feels a little messy at times, but that's to be expected when characters are traveling through time (and even interacting with themselves).
If you liked The 7½ Lives of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart Turton or Dark Matter by Blake Crouch then I think you'll enjoy The Psychology of Time Travel. Some of the concepts are wild, yet when you think about it, they make a lot of sense. Complex, interesting and unique! I recommend this to readers 14-years-old+.
Trigger warnings: self cutting, blood, mental health, addiction, eating disorder
Overall: 3.6/5 rounded up to 4 on Goodreads
Thank you to Sarah at Crooked Lane Books for the complimentary copy in exchange for my honest review.
All women sci fi murder mystery? Yes, please! This was an amazing read! Apart from being my beloved sci fi genre, it has the main thing I look for in a murder mystery - I couldn't immediately tell who did it! Each character is a fully developed person, many with potential motives. It gets into their minds and how the time travel is changing them (and their society). Words are failing me on how captivating this was. Love.
I just absolutely love time travel stories and The Psychology of Time Travel was epic. A fascinating read about what it would be like if travelling time was not only a reality but common, everyday occurrence! This story explores a lot of issue surrounding the concept of time travel which I certainly enjoyed. It was complicated with characters having several selves as they moved back and forth between various time zones.
If you enjoy time travel I think you would like this book.
Thank you to Netgalley and publisher Crooked Lane Books for a copy to read and review.
This! Yes! This is a time travel novel of sheer perfection.
A time-travel mystery melding with a wide-reaching character study. I'm flabbergasted. The Psychology of Time Travel was a gordian knot balanced faultlessly with an endless knot, wherein everything ties back into itself. Mascarenhas has written a wonderfully nuanced and brilliantly executed book that I could easily see myself revisiting again and again.
To try and summarize this book properly would require a dinner, a bottle of red wine, some great food, and everyone's undivided attention. I mean...give me the proper amount of elbow room. But, suffice it to say, that cannot be delivered here. Instead, just know that there is a complete cast of characters that is somehow so full but never overwhelming.
Mascarenhas begins with a proper opener by introducing the reader to the four female pioneers of time travel: Barbara Heresford, Margaret Norton, Grace Taylor, and Lucille Waters. Just as they are achieving the success for which they've worked so hard, Barbara has a breakdown in front of the press. Faced with the risk of upsetting the entire future of time travel, the other three pioneers oust Barbara from the project—permanently severing all ties to her.
What follows is truly an audaciously intricate passage through time—just not a direct path. Mascarenhas bounces around on several forward moving timelines. Along with a smattering from other times, the three major ones take us through events from the late 1960s through the early half of the 1970s with the pioneers; then with Ruby Rebello in 2017; and with Odette Sophola in 2018.
The older of the trio of main timelines guides the reader through the inception of time travel, the opening of its governing body, the Conclave—run by Margaret Norton, and its early beginning years. We get to know each early traveler and pioneer in stops and starts—including Barbara. The later timelines, nearer our own, reveal themselves as mysteries of sorts for Ruby and Odette to explore separately—and simultaneously considering the time traveling aspect. Ruby's involves mysterious information and uncovering and deciphering the proper clues, while Odette's actually involves the case of an unknown victim of a homicide. Odette discovers the body of an elderly woman and is unable to rest without combing through the facts and discovering the truth for herself. All ending with such a delightfully insane trial that I read it through twice.
The plot unfolds in a fantastically subtle and organic way, despite its nonlinear construction, even down to the characters’ last names, their timelines, and their role in the story itself. Boasting fluid storytelling and unchangeable plot points, this book is as captivating as it is complex. The utter uniqueness of The Psychology of Time Travel made me want to start the book over immediately.
I received an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. Many thanks to NetGalley and Crooked Lane Books for the review copy.
I was so excited to read this book when it hit my queue, and boy did it live up to the hype. Mascarenhas’ debut novel is such a strange, twisty, delightful ball of fun! With its mystery wrapped in several points of view and various timelines, and its cast full of amazing women, it keeps you entranced and guessing until the very end.
Strong women, great story, and a new twist on a favorite genre!
It’s been a while since I’ve read a book that made me want to rearrange my day just so that I could read. Kate Mascarenhas’ The Psychology of Time did it. Even with a toddler and prepping for Christmas, I managed to read this book within three days. And, I miss it already. Damn, my luck that it’s not the first in an already finished series. (Give me more, Kate!)
The story starts in 1967 and time jumps throughout the arc of the book through several decades into the future. It’s an amazing twist on the time travel genre that takes a few of the given concepts we all accept to be foundational in time travel (hello…. paradox?) and turns it on its head. I love the strong female characters that create and drive the story forward. It’s smart, fast-paced, and doesn’t shy away from something we need more of: brilliant women in charge of their own destiny.
The beauty of this work is how deftly the author weaves multiple storylines through different time periods connecting women of several generations. There are enough hooks to keep you from getting lost, but Mascarenhas doesn’t skimp on the twists just to make it easy on the reader.
I honestly haven’t read a novel that held such a siren call on my brain in a good while. I can’t recommend The Psychology of Time enough. It’s truly Agatha Christie meets Doctor Who wrapped in Hidden Figures.
I will admit that having a completely different twist on the standardly accepted beliefs in time travel fiction had me wondering how something would work as written, but even that is a very small thing to grapple with especially when the twists are beautifully written and well-thought. All in all, I’m taking a pass on this one and saying that the only truly bad thing about the book is that it ends.
Go. Read it. Now.
I received a copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
The premise is fascinating: time travel as a career and institution, run by women. And there's fantastic diversity, with mental health/psychological concerns (the title doesn't just sound cool! It actually represents a major concern in the novel), POC, explicitly gay/bisexual characters. Mascarenhas' approach to laying out the murder mystery clearly respects the reader's intelligence — we get to peek at scenes from various points of the timeline and through various characters' eyes, and it's up to you to put the pieces together if you don't want to just sit around and wait for the Big Reveal; at the same time, there are lots of academic and ethical questions to consider.
All that said, I had some trouble connecting with the characters and getting really invested in the plot, because this is a very concept-driven novel, which I don't think I've actually encountered before. (I actually took a few days' break from this book, during which I retained enough of the previous information to keep up but not enough to want to jump right back into it.)
This is such a unique read, so if you're even a little bit interested in sci-fi and mystery I'd give it a try.
This is a very unusual and entertaining time-travel tale. All of the major characters are women, and their interactions provide character depth which is often not found in science fiction. I enjoyed The Psychology of Time Travel quite a lot, and would've given it five stars were it not for a less-than-thrilling ending. I'd really like to see a sequel featuring the same characters, and the story could also be turned into an interesting film or miniseries.
I was actually intending to let this one pass me by - the title did not grab me and I have so many other books waiting. However a combination of the reviews and the fact that it was available on Netgalley made me decide to read it and I am so glad I did.
It is a story about four women who invented a time machine and what happened to them and their invention once it became public property. More importantly the book focuses on the people involved and how they were impacted by this remarkable achievement. Some of the generally accepted rules of time travel are used and some are just tossed out of the window. Not interacting with ones former and future selves is an example. In this book people seek themselves out, revisit and attend past events such as weddings and births and some even live most of the time in the wrong decade. It is fascinating but I found it best not to dwell on the science of the thing - just take it as it comes and it is great:)
There is even a Sherlock Holmes style murder mystery involving a corpse and a locked room - locked from the inside of course! This was fun but I failed to follow the rationale. Doesn't matter! It was still a great story.
At the start of this review I gave the book 4 stars but I have talked myself into 5. It really was very entertaining.
I truly think 'The Psychology of Time Travel' is a masterpiece. All the scientific elements were carefully crafted and it made so much sense you could actually believe time travel could exist. The narration was great, I was a bit scared I would be lost with the multiple points of view and timelines but I didn't. I like to believe the book itself is a person living in this universe, we have one chronology (like the Emus) and we, the reader, interact with the characters like they were time travelers who don't have the same cronology as us.
It was so refreshing that all the main characters were women. In fact, only a handful of side characters were men and they weren't that important to the plot so it was nice to have a women driven story (yay for female scientists!).
The diversity, both ethnic and LGBTQ+ was delightful (+ it's an own voice book!).
And kudos to that little test at the end of the book, it was fun to see if you are fit, or not, to travel through time !
The Psychology of Time Travel is a great book. As a psych major, I found it very interesting to see how psychology and time travel are connected. I loved the angle where the writer explored what time travel would do to a person's brain and especially regarding coping and death. What I loved, even more, is that it makes sense.
But don't worry if psychology is not your thing. It is mostly a murder mystery with a satisfying ending.
The book is told from different perspectives at different times which all end up connected and a cohesive story which I love so much.
So if I were you, I would dive into this mystery especially if enjoy murder mysteries and/or time travel.
Mascarenhas looks at time travel from a different perspective. She is not so concerned with how the time line might or might not change, but what effect it has on the individual. The story is told through different narrators, and at different times, in a way that enhances the narrative. As an added bonus, that most of the characters is female is presented as the norm. A great debut novel.
This was a fun book to read! There were a few too many characters for me to easily remember who was who and in which timeline, but I still thoroughly enjoyed it. And that's part of the fun! It's diverse, and is definitely female-driven, which I love! It's "normal" enough for those who aren't generally into sci-fi and time travelling, but sci-fi and time travely enough for those that are!
I appreciated the glossary and test at the end as well, that's a great touch.
I look forward to more books by Kate!
I fully admit that until this book, I've not read a book that ventures into the world of time travel. But wow, this book was so good!
The four pioneers, Barbara, Margaret, Lucille and Grace, have created a time machine, thus altering the course of life as they know it. Barbara soon after has a breakdown in public and is exiled from the team.
Fifty years later, there's a mysterious dead woman. And there's a ton of speculation as to who it could be, and how she died.
The story follows a variety of characters and a variety of time periods. I had no problems keeping track of who I was reading about or what time period I was in. And I loved that we went back and forth between various times and characters.
I also loved that I could not figure out who the dead woman was for a large part of the story. Every time I thought I knew who it was, the story gave another tidbit away and I realized I could be wrong.
And once we know who she is, then the list of people responsible kept me guessing as well.I thought it was such a brilliantly written book, it kept me on my toes trying to solve the mystery.
And along with the looming mysterious death, I spent time wrapping my brain around the possibility of time travel. The way Kate Mascarenhas created time travel as its own government and entity doesn't feel far off at all from how it would be in reality. I really cannot imagine a world with multiple of me running around in different time periods haha.
All in all, I thoroughly enjoyed this read!
First book of the year. I did an amazing start to my reading this year. This book was amazing. Time travel mixed with murder mystery. Kate Mascarenhas did an amazing job. It was interesting, confusing and beautiful. I loved Grace bubbly character. Ending was satisfying enough but I wished we learned more of some characters. Like what happened to angel of death game? What happened to Teddy? What happened to some minor characters?This book should have been longer. Overall this was an unique story to read. I will definitely read Kate Mascarenhas next stories.
An interesting take on time travel and how it might affect the time travelers themselves and the society in which this is possible. Imbued with a wonderfully diverse set of characters, the novel jumps through time but thankfully helps the reader keep the storylines straight with chapter titles. Recommend for fans of Time Travelers Wife to keep the inter time relationships but without quite so much heartache.
I received an ARC from the publisher through Net Galley in exchange for an honest review.
Time travel has been a popular topic in books and movies, but few have handled the topic as well as the author of this book. Perspectives of characters and differences in time are used to move the reader from now to then and back again. Character development is an especially strong point pulling the reader into the story.
I finished up 2018 by reading one of the best books of the year (way to sneak it in at the end of December) – The Psychology of Time Travel by Kate Mascarenhas.
This is an amazing novel. The premise is simple, and one we’ve seen before. Time travel is possible and is run by a shadowy agency outside the rules of the government. However, what makes this book different is that Mascarenhas focuses on the psychological and cognitive effects of time travel. What does it mean to live outside of time? How does that affect your relationships with non-time travelers? Other time travelers? Yourself? Another aspect that marks this as different to other time travel novels is that you can only travel between the 1960s and the 2300s – which limits the possibilities and affects how it is used. This is not hard sci-fi – there is no rationale given as to how time travel works, so if you’re put off by that then just be aware.
A lot of new and complex ideas along these lines are examined through this novel, and I almost wish that more time had been spent on it, as opposed to the murder mystery plot. I understand that sometimes first-time novelists feel that there needs to be some sort of Plot to carry a book through, but Mascarenhas’ strongest suit was in her characterisation and her specialist area of cognitive behaviour, so I hope in the future she focuses more on that. Mascarenhas has a background as a clinical psychologist and it shows. In comparison, the murder mystery felt…odd.
This could be a confusing book. The overlapping timelines, the characters appearing with themselves in the same scene, trying to work out not only who the murder victim is, but which time they are originally from? Mascarenhas handles that well, and while it could be confusing I don’t think it is. I think a reread of this book would only increase enjoyment.
As I’ve mentioned, the characters in this book are lovely. They are well rounded, complex, and not always what they appear to be. Everyone has secrets, everyone has a conflict they are coping with, and loyalties shift throughout the timelines. I enjoyed reading about all of them, including the ‘bad guy’ (no spoilers here!). There is a little bit of inclusiveness, I am always a fan of lesbians on the page who get a happy ending, and all the characters are women, if that’s something you’re specifically looking for.
Overall, I would recommend this book if you want a wide variety of characters, a non-traditional murder mystery, and/or a new approach to time travel and its potential effects. I am definitely going to keep an eye out on what this author publishes in the future.
The Psychology of Time Travel by Kate Mascarenhas – ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
What happens to your brain when time holds no meaning for you? Barbara, Grace, Lucille, and Margret are pioneers in the science of time travel, but Barbara's on-camera mental breakdown right at the dawn of their time traveling breakthrough leaves her in a mental facility. The remaining women distance themselves from her for the good of their work and public image. Barbara spends the rest of her life longing for one more chance to join the group and travel in time. Decades later, an unidentifiable woman is murdered in a way that points to the involvement of the original pioneers. This time traveling murder mystery will keep you guessing and also make you question what the long term effects of a life lead without chronological consequences could mean for people and their brains.
I was a huge fan of The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger and was thrilled about the opportunity to read something in a similar vein. Add to that the promise of a female-focused STEM story, and I was hooked. The shifting timelines and the multiple narrators gave this story an immersive quality that aligned perfectly with the theme of time travel. I wouldn't hesitate to recommend this book.
This book is a powerful combination of mystery and time travel, leading the reader heavily into the world of time travel, popping back and forth through the decades and revealing bit of information by bit of information. It pulled me in and I found it hard to put it down until I knew what had happened and how.
Mascarenhas weaves together a complicated plot and provides and interesting new view of time travel, one that is centered around female scientists who change the course of the world and their complicated relationships. The openness of the time travel is what intrigued me most and how the characters had to navigate within that world. They could travel back and forth on their own timeline, meet and interact with themselves, and they knew when they would die and when their loved ones would die. The world functioned within the limitations created by these facts.
One thing that got to me was that I sometimes found the characters blended together and it would take me a minute to remember who was who (this might just be a function of my over-worked brain haha) but it didn’t too negatively affect my reading experience.
Overall, it was a fantastic book, and the different strings were pulled together expertly at the end.
I’d recommend this one to people who are looking for some women heavy speculative fiction and love time travel and mysteries. Or really, 2/3 of these things will probably do.
I don’t think I can accurately describe just how much I love this book, but I will try.
It had me hooked from the start, grabbing me instantly with the strong, smart, vulnerable women, and kept me hooked through the entire story. The relative lack of men was an added, welcome, and refreshing change of pace from most books I’ve read. I’ve also noticed that most books and movies/television shows involving time travel make the reader/viewer do some mental gymnastics in order to wrap their head around the whole concept, however Mascarenhas does all that for you, leaving your brain free to try to dissect the murder mystery.
I also loved how the story is woven together and how organized it is, despite it being about a very disorganized subject. This made it easy to read and impossible to put down.
I have already started telling all my friends about this book and will continue to bother them until each and everyone of them reads it. I was utterly blown away and loved every minute of it.
Loved it, like a cross between Hidden Figures and Back to the Future. Unlike any time travel novel I’ve read. It’s unique not only in that’s it’s female centric, but that it’s also a murder mystery. Although we don’t get a lot of time with the many characters individually, Kate Mascarenhas does an amazing job at creating unique and diverse voices for each. She’s an author that is able to convey much information without many words. I hope to spend more time in this fantastic world with these characters in “the future”.
The author covered so many different way psychology and time travel could meet and interact with one another. Ways I would have never even thought about. It was incredibly fascinating to read. It's written in very subtly as well. Sometimes you don't even realise that writer is educating you on the literal psychology of time travel because it all just feels natural and fllows nicely along with the story and it's characters.
Speaking of the characters.. I loved the diversity in this book. The wlw relationships.. The powerful WOC.. It was just so refreshing and wonderful to read.
The one negative that would throw me off from time to time is the different time lines. If you choose to pick this book up, just make sure you to check what date is put underneath the chapter title. It'll help you keep up with the story immensely.
Thanks to NetGalley and Crooked Lane Books for the free e-ARC in exchange for an honest review.
The Psychology of Time Travel by Kate Mascarenhas has everything: time travel, murder, family drama, mental health rep, lesbian relationships, and best of all female friendships. I really enjoyed following each woman's perspective and seeing the story unfold. With the time travel element, it felt like anything was possible and anyone could be a suspect, so the reveal was quite something.
I'm so glad I picked this up. It was a great start to my reading year, and I've put Kate Mascarenhas on my authors-to-watch list.
Although confusing at times, I tried to read this book three times. Once I was into the characters (and perhaps actually concentrated) I was able to sit back and enjoy. A thought-provoking read with lots of character development.
Many thanks to Crooked Lane Books and NetGalley for a very good story.
I received a free copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
What an absolutely lovely surprise of a book! It straddles the genres of pulpy time-travel thriller and literary magical realism really well, which is an incredibly hard thing to pull off - and my understanding is that this is a debut novel which makes that feat even more impressive. The tone is odd, and probably not for everyone, but it worked for me: a deadpan, almost flat affect that made the extraordinary events recounted sound quite plausible. The characters are intriguing if always somewhat opaque (because of the style), with the possible exception of Odette and Ruby, and the plot hums along very nicely all the way through. It's not a perfect book - I wasn't so keen on the satirical elements which didn't strike me as very incisive or clever, and the "villain" was incredibly one-note, but overall I absolutely recommend this book both as a really fun ride, and as a fairly high-quality attempt at taking a pulpy premise and turn it into a literary fiction.
An intriguing book! Was my first read of the year, it sets the bar really high. Beforehand I was apprehensive about the way time traveling would work, but somehow the way the author describes it actually makes it seem possible. The fact that there are only female characters is also a great idea. It turns out that when you leave out the men I don't really miss them...
What happens to your mental health when you time travel? How would you manage with seeing the lifetimes of your loved ones pass non-linearly for you? These are just some of the questions that Kate Mascarenhas touches on in The Psychology of Time Travel.
This has a strong predominantly female cast with LGBTQ relationships without making a big deal out of these. It has women from every walk of life who appear as well rounded characters (if not always that likeable as a result). It takes place across multiple times from 1972 -2019 and jumps between these which means that it requires concentration to follow which characters are where and when, but it all comes together to a very satisfying ending.
I'd definitely pick up this author's next book when it comes.
Thanks to netgalley and the publishers for an ARC.
The Psychology of Time Travel is almost part science fiction, part murder mystery. It is intensely story driven and I think my main complaint would be that we don't get a deep enough picture of each of the characters. But besides that, I found myself immersed in the plot line, trying to figure out what happened, and how each of these women's decisions are influence by love and ambition.
While it does revolve around a group of pioneer scientists, the bulk of the story revolves around Granny Bee, one of the pioneers that is pushed out of their group, her grand daughter, and a witness to the discovery of a body. We get to know these women the most and there's a ton of diversity with a bisexual, lesbian, and black character as well within the story. All three of these characters uncover various parts of not only the murder mystery element, but also the invention of time travel.
Is it ironic that the creators of time travel never seem to know what will come of their discovery? Could the four women who create time travel in England in the 1960s have known that their invention would lead to a byzantine, temporally tangled, terrifyingly shadowy bureaucracy? They definitely couldn’t have predicted what time travel itself could do the psyches of people who undertake it. In Kate Mascarenhas’ fascinating novel, The Psychology of Time Travel, we dive deeply into these questions, especially that last one.
Barbara was one of the original four women who created time travel but, after an incident captured live by the BBC, she was pushed out of the quartet and forever banned from even working for the Conclave. Decades later, when another time travel starts to send warnings? hints? to Barbara’s granddaughter, Ruby, a spectacularly complex plot kicks off that will take the rest of the book, several investigators, and a lot of head-scratching to figure out. I loved every page of it.
The title of the book–and many events therein–force us to think about the consequences of skipping through time. A lot of the time travelers employed by the Conclave (including all of the original inventors except Barbara) “cheat” by looking ahead to see what happens to themselves. On the one hand, they are very confident. They know they will accomplish what they set out to do, because they already know what the outcome is. On the other, knowing when they’ll die and how, who their spouses will be, and so on, seems to leach their emotions of their intensity; they just don’t feel as much after a few trips. The only way to feel anything is to haze the new recruits or play chilling psychological games with civilians. For a few recruits, time traveling leads to debilitating maladaptive coping behavior or triggers latent mental illnesses. On top of a wonderfully complicated plot, The Psychology of Time Travel is one of the best “set up a scenario and let’s see what happens” books I’ve read in a long time.
The more I read The Psychology of Time Travel, the more I enjoyed it. The characters are fascinatingly warped and the moving parts of the plot slide around before satisfactorily clicking into place. It’s the kind of book where, at the end, you see that everything up to that point was perfectly placed, necessary, even fated. It’s the kind of plot mastery that I absolutely adore; I got a story that was utterly gripping, but only saw the author’s pen at work at the very end. Reading The Psychology of Time Travel is like watching an elaborate magic trick and getting to learn how it worked afterwards.
I chose this book because I was intrigued by the title. This is a genre-breaking book combining time travel, science fiction, a “locked room” mystery, with touches of romance. I am sure there are techies out there who will denigrate the time-travel aspect, but I was able to suspend disbelief long enough to get through—and enjoy—the novel.
There are a lot of characters who, as they time travel, meet their future selves (called “silver selves” because of their gray hair) and their past selves (“green selves” because of their youth. With four main characters and multiples of their green and silver selves zipping in and out of time, often it’s like looking into the Hall of Mirrors at Versailles. Many of these characters had very little development. Perhaps stream-lining the character list might allow for expansion of character development and increase the emotionality.
There is a bit of a mystery with a woman killed in a locked room. It’s not the highlight of the book, but rather a bit of a subplot that adds interest especially since it can only be solved by time traveling back to just before the woman is murdered.
The main appeal of The Psychology of Time Travel is that it describes four female (yes, women! and culturally diverse and sexually diverse to boot) scientists who create the first time machine back in 1967. The book focuses on these four pioneers and their multiple selves to look at how time travel affects them psychologically and physiologically. This books looks at multiple currently relevant issues through the lens of the lives of its characters: sexuality, death, bipolar disorder, bullying, hazing, racism, and infidelity.
Mascarenhas’s writing style is quite matter of fact but is enriched by neologisms she lists in an appendix to the book. The multi-layered, creative plot requires some concentration to follow, but overall the book is worth the effort, especially as it is loaded with female characters who are competent, capable, and sexual.
A wonderfully queer time travel novel that explores the cognitive impact of time travel on humans and the capacity of the brain to accept and process the unbelievable. I highly recommend for those who loved The Power by Naomi Alderman and want more books with queer characters in the science fiction genre.
OMG! I feel so empowered after reading this! What a wonderful book this is. There are many books out there that deal with time travel. Some of them are good, some bad and some are just plain ugly. This book has left me with wanting more.
Many thanks to Netgalley and Crooked Lane Books for this advanced readers copy.
Excellent story, put me in the mind of the ladies who worked on the atomic bomb. Skillfully interwoven, I think some people don't realize how confusing a time travel novel can get, but this handles it beautifully. It features strong women, which is always a good thing.
My favourite thing about this book was it's all-female cast, each character was wonderfully unique and diverse and each had their own 'voice' which made the story really interesting. It was fascinating to read about the mentality each character had when dealing with a situation and psychology and mental health played a huge part, but the author treated those with respect and it made for a very thought-provoking read.
My one problem with the writing was the sheer amount of characters and time jumps, I often found myself looking back to the chapter header to see where in the time-line I was. It did feel over-whelming at times and you really need to focus to understand the story properly, it's not a 'light read' by any stretch. Although confusing for me personally, the author did a great job of making intertwining the stories and characters and I really appreciate how difficult that must have been.
Over-all I really enjoyed this book, the author deals with mental health and the power of love and friendships in a way that makes the book very heart-felt, It's a complex read but the writing style and characters are wonderful and I'm really looking forward to seeing what Kate Mascarenhas does in the future.
This was a fantastic and well-crafted book, which easily mixed a variety of genres in such an interesting manner. Mystery, Science Fiction and Thriller.. oh my.
I adored the characters, particularly Barbara. And later on in the book - Lucille.
Although the book jumped forward into the future and back into the past, it was easy to follow and allowed one to get to know the main characters a lot better. I would have like to have heard more from Fay, to fill in some of the blanks between the green-Fay and the silver-Fay. However I realize that it is than a referral to the happenings within the Conclave.
I haven’t read very many time travel books, and thus cannot make a good comparison of the bits of theories touched on within the contents of the story. However it did insight some deep discussions with the hubby - if knowing parts of one’s future would it than solidified the knowledge to be as is (thus not fate but destiny), or does it allow for a different path to be taken and change the direction in which one’s life was headed. To which his response was: “As per Doc Brown: Your future is whatever you make it, so make it a good one.”
** I received a copy of The Psychology of Time Travel by Kate Mascarenhas via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. (Review on Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show/2680460079
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In 1967, four women built the very first time machine. During its unveiling to the world, Barbara suffers a bit of a break and is diagnosed with what is now bipolar disorder. Fifty-years later, the body of a woman is found in the basement of a toy museum. Who is she? Who killed her? Through time travel, can her death be prevented?Barbara’s granddaughter, Ruby Rebello is among those desperate to solve the murder.
Before we go any further, can I just say how much I loved this book? I wasn’t expecting too much when I picked it up. I just knew I love time travel and female-driven stories. This had both, so why not?
There is so much to love about this book. As soon as I got the characters straight (there are a lot), I was fully engrossed. The book is told in 3rd person but from alternating perspectives and timelines. There are the four lady time travelers, members of their families, and those with whom they become entangled across time. The author does a great job with acquainting the audience with them pretty quickly, so it becomes easy to get lost in the story and not be bogged down in too many details. The chapters are super short, but I never seemed to find a solid stopping point, because I just wanted to keep going.
Aside from some minor exposition and narration issues, this book was gold. I did feel occasionally that I was being told things rather than shown them, but I completely get it. When you try to get into complex physics across space and time, it’s probably not the best idea to spend too much time and energy getting the reader bogged down in the details, particularly when the story needs to keep moving.
Also. Also. ALSO. I was not expecting queer representation in this book, so that was a nice surprise. There is a lesbian character (or two), at least one bi character as well, and as I always appreciate, their sexuality isn’t the most interesting thing about them. It’s part of the romance plot line, but these characters’ involvements in the murder investigation are far more compelling than who they are sleeping with, and I appreciated that wholeheartedly.
If you’re into sci-fi, definitely check this one out. I’m hardly ever a mystery person, but it’s weaved so expertly through this story, I was desperate to solve it, too.
I have heard lots of great things about The Psychology Of Time Travel in the last couple of months, so I was excited to be finally reading it myself. The first thing that stood out for me was the fact that the most important characters are all female. This doesn't happen too often in the sci-fi genre (that I'm aware of) and it's good to see female scientifics in the spotlight. This story present time travel in a very interesting way. It was fascinating to see how they first developed the machine and how the company has grown over time, making time travelers into an elite group with their own slang and views on life. The psychological aspect behind time travel is intriguing and The Psychology Of Time Travel will definitely leave its mark and make you wonder how you would react to the effects of time travel. It's interesting that they cannot go to the distant past; only to when machine was invented onwards. The whole seeing past and future selves does sound a little disturbing though... I think I would go mad myself even though I would probably be aware time travel exists in that situation. This is partly where I had some doubts: the way that so-called 'one-way travelers' accept the sudden appearance of time travelers that easily without going crazy. The plot is intricate and constructed in quite a complex way, making sure you will have to pay attention to the different characters and timelines to be able to put together the full puzzle. The mystery around the death in the toy museum and the different characters and their futures are intertwined, and you will slowly learn how everything fits together. The Psychology Of Time Travel is a fascinating debut that left me wondering about how I would react to such situations. Surprisingly low on the sci-fi and high on the psychology, this story is perfect even for those who are not really into the sci-fi genre.
This story is part sci-fi, part psychology, part murder mystery, part family drama and part romantic fiction. There are a lot of different elements involved in The Psychology Of Time Travel, and somehow they all manage to work together and create a very fascinating debut. The complex plot will have you on your toes as you try to fit everything together, but only in the most positive way. It was interesting to see the different characters evolve over time and the psychology behind time travel is simply intriguing. I loved the details of the time traveler's slang as well! This book definitely left a mark and will stay with me for quite some time.
When time travel is invented, a number of women have their lives changed irrevocably because of it, but especially the four female pioneers who made it possible. This book explores their lives, and the effects that time travel has on them, in a way that I have not seen before. The story uses a blend of science, psychology and every day experiences to create a sublime reading experience. This is not 'in your face' sci-fi, it is written in such a way that it is a tale of friendship and love, that happens to include gentle sci-fi along the way. I loved it, and reader's should not be intimidated by the genre.
I admit to not usually liking stories of time travel. There are too many holes to fill and it's not always done well. Something in the description of this book made me think it would be different. And it was. We start with four women in 1967 who invent time travel. We are introduced to Margaret, Lucille, Grace, and Barbara. After short time traveling trips and meeting themselves, the women decide to have an interview with the BBC. On television, Barbara, an expert on nuclear fission, has a mental breakdown. She is quickly ousted from the group. Flash forward to 2017 and we know that time travel is completely controlled by the original scientists through The Conclave and Barbara has lived a mostly anonymous life, left out of the history of time travel.
Barbara has no contact with the others until one day she gets a mysterious message from Grace, a death that will occur. Who it is and how she will die are not included. Solving the mystery of this death is the focus of the rest of the book, though not what keeps you reading. We travel back and forth through time, mostly the lat 60s early 80s and the present, and observe people wrestling with the demands of time travel and what it does to those chosen to experience it.
Sure, there are things you can definitely learn from the past and future (which, for reasons unknown, only goes 300 year into the future and, for reasons known, back to the first use of the time machine.) You are left asking so many questions: How would time travel affect memory? How would you react to events? How would you view yourself? How you view death? How much would you really want to know? How could you interact with non-time travelers? How do you trust your own actions without knowing what the people around you know that you don't know? So many others.
Also of note is the prominence of women throughout the book. Most characters are female and most interaction is between women. This gives it a different point of view, seeing the characters through mostly female lenses. I'm going to be recommending this book to everyone who asks me for something good to read.
I finished this book in a day - its that compelling.
Kate Mascarenhas is not only adept at writing about time travel, but keeps the reader enraptured the entire time. The genre combination of sci-fi and mystery kept me even more glued to the page.
I'll give a more detailed review as it gets closer to the publication date.
Thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for providing me with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!
A beautiful novel about women, technology, death, morality and psychology. It begins with a locked-room mystery and spirals backwards and forwards through time. I love the complexities of the relationships between the women and the relationships of the time travellers to themselves. I highly recommend this book.
I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. I was not paid for this review.