Excerpt from The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reading Guide |  Reviews |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

The Time Traveler's Wife

By Audrey Niffenegger

The Time Traveler's Wife
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • Hardcover: Aug 2003,
    518 pages.
    Paperback: May 2004,
    560 pages.

    Publication Information

  • Rate this book


Buy This Book

About this Book

Print Excerpt


"Yes. . . you're more . . ." selfish, I think, but I say, ". . . younger."

He considers it. "Is that good or bad?"

"Different." I run both hands over Henry's shoulders and across his back, massaging muscles, exploring indentations. "Have you seen yourself, in your forties?"

"Yes. I look like I've been spindled and mutilated."

"Yeah. But you're less - I mean you are sort of -- more. I mean, you know me, so. . . ."

"So right now you're telling me that I'm somewhat gauche."

I shake my head, although that is exactly what I mean. "It's just that I've had all these experiences, and you . . . I'm not used to being with you when you don't remember anything that happened."

Henry is somber. "I'm sorry. But the person you know doesn't exist yet. Stick with me, and sooner or later, he's bound to appear. That's the best I can do, though."

"That's fair," I say. "But in the meantime. . . ."

He turns to meet my gaze. "In the meantime?"

"I want. . . ."

"You want?"

I'm blushing. Henry smiles, and pushes me backward gently onto the pillows. "You know."

"I don't know much, but I can guess a thing or two."

Later, we're dozing warm covered with midmorning October pale sun, skin to skin and Henry says something into the back of my neck that I don't catch.

"What?"

"I was thinking; it's very peaceful, here with you. It's nice to just lie here and know that the future is sort of taken care of."

"Henry?"

"Hmm?"

"How come you never told yourself about me?"

"Oh. I don't do that."

"Do what?"

"I don't usually tell myself stuff ahead of time unless it's huge, life-threatening, you know? I'm trying to live like a normal person. I don't even like having myself around, so I try not to drop in on myself unless there's no choice."

I ponder this for a while. "I would tell myself everything."

"No, you wouldn't. It makes a lot of trouble."

"I was always trying to get you to tell me things." I roll over onto my back and Henry props his head on his hand and looks down at me. Our faces are about six inches apart. It's so strange to be talking, almost like we always did, but the physical proximity makes it hard for me to concentrate.

"Did I tell you things?" he asks.

"Sometimes. When you felt like it, or had to."

"Like what?"

"See? You do want to know. But I'm not telling."

Henry laughs. "Serves me right. Hey, I'm hungry. Let's go get breakfast."

Outside it's chilly. Cars and cyclists cruise along Dearborn while couples stroll down the sidewalks and there we are with them, in the morning sunlight, hand in hand, finally together for anyone to see. I feel a tiny pang of regret, as though I've lost a secret, and then a rush of exaltation: now everything begins.

Excerpted from The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger. Copyright Audrey Niffenegger 2003. All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced without permission from the publisher, MacAdam Cage.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!
Member Benefits

Join Now!

Check the advantages!
Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year

    •  
    • FREE
    • MEMBER
    • Range of media reviews for each book
    • Excerpts of all featured books
    • Author bios, interviews and pronunciations
    • Browse by genre
    • Book club discussions
    • Book club advice and reading guides
    • BookBrowse reviews and "beyond the book" back-stories
    •  
    • Reviews of notable books ahead of publication
    •  
    • Free books to read and review (US Only)
    •  
    • Browse for the best books by time period, setting & theme
    •  
    • Read-alike suggestions for thousands of books and authors
    •  
    • 'My Reading List" to keep track of your books
    •  
Sign up, win books!

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: The Hundred-Year House
    The Hundred-Year House
    by Rebecca Makkai
    Rebecca Makkai's sophomore novel The Hundred-Year House could just have easily been titled ...
  • Book Jacket
    The Valley of Amazement
    by Amy Tan
    "Mirror, Mirror on the wall
    I am my mother after all!"


    In my pre-retirement days as a professor ...
  • Book Jacket: A Man Called Ove
    A Man Called Ove
    by Fredrik Backman
    Reading A Man Called Ove was like having Christmas arrive early. Set in Sweden, this debut novel is ...

First Impressions

Members read and review books ahead
of publication. See what they think
in First Impressions!

Books that
expand your
horizons.

Visitors can view a lot of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only

Find out more.

Book Discussions
Book Jacket

Tomlinson Hill
by Chris Tomlinson

Published Jul. 2014

Join the discussion!

Win this book!
Win The Angel of Losses

The Angel of Losses

"Family saga, mystery, and myth intersect in Feldman's debut novel." - Booklist

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

E C H A Silver L

and be entered to win..

Books thatinspire you.Handpicked.

Books you'll stay up all night reading; books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, books that will expand your mind and inspire you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.