The Time Keeper by Mitch Albom
- Method of Obtaining: I received my copy from the publisher via NetGalley.
- Published by: Hyperion
- Release Date: 9/4/2012
In Mitch Albom’s newest work of fiction, the inventor of the world’s first clock is punished for trying to measure God’s greatest gift. He is banished to a cave for centuries and forced to listen to the voices of all who come after him seeking more days, more years. Eventually, with his soul nearly broken, Father Time is granted his freedom, along with a magical hourglass and a mission: a chance to redeem himself by teaching two earthly people the true meaning of time.
He returns to our world–now dominated by the hour-counting he so innocently began–and commences a journey with two unlikely partners: one a teenage girl who is about to give up on life, the other a wealthy old businessman who wants to live forever. To save himself, he must save them both. And stop the world to do so.
Told in Albom’s signature spare, evocative prose, this remarkably original tale will inspire readers everywhere to reconsider their own notions of time, how they spend it and how precious it truly is.
- It’s a story about Father Time – caught my interest.
The Time Keeper by Mitch Albom has been on my excitement list for a while now. Such a great cover, an author I really enjoy, and a story about Father Time – how could I not be excited!
What I expected and what I got were two different things, however. Instead of getting an interesting, complex story about a fantastical creature, I got instead chopped bits of a story, tossed together like a bit of a human salad, and mixed all up.
This story is part Dor, part Victor, and part Sarah, but does not spend enough time with any one of them to make me, as a reader, feel connected to them. I felt a bit of pity for Sarah, was highly annoyed by Victor, and just.. confused by Dor (Father Time). That lack of connection took this book from something that, I was hoping, I would connect to and feel inspired by, to simply a story that, frankly, wasn’t really that good.
I think where this went wrong was the way the book was formatted, first of all (bold lettering making a statement before a paragraph about the character). This constantly jarred me and made me realize I was reading a book and kept the characters from fully forming in my imagination. Secondly, Victor and Sarah were just not very likable. Victor, an old, rich man who is dying after a full life, wants to find immortality, and Sarah, a teenager who has just been dumped by her first crush, is suicidal. It wasn’t big enough for me, not real enough. Where are the people who have dealt with huge issues and struggling against depression – it’s out there: the homeless, the abused. What about those who are working for good and want to continue to live to see that succeed?
I’m disappointed that The Time Keeper didn’t work for me. I’m disappointed that I spent all that time (although maybe there’s a lesson for me?) anticipating a story that did not live up to its promise. But most of all, I’m sad that I invested my precious time in a story that felt rushed, and unwilling to commit time back to me.
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