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T is for Time Travel Book Review

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T is for Time Travel is a curious collection of short stories by Stanlei Bellan that spans the fullness of space and time.

Included are a colourful array of stories that range from the abstract to the profound. And for a book that stands at circa 120 pages, Bellan is able to extract a bevy of interesting time travel-related hijinks and present them in a concise manner.

It’s thought-provoking without being complex – its simplicity belies the genius contained within.

T is for Time Travel
Overview

I’m sometimes quite suspicious of time travel in fiction. Too often it creates unnecessary complexity, and in the worst cases, problematic plot holes.

So what’s fantastic about T for Time Travel is that it leans into, and even acknowledges some of these shortcomings in the genre with a dash of irony, whilst still providing some genuinely fascinating tales. 

It’s evident that T is for Time Travel was, no doubt, a lot of fun for the author to write. And that comes across to the reader. It’s playful, self-referential, and emotionally satisfying. whilst still not taking itself too seriously – and that makes for a great read.

Bellan experiments with changes in tense, metacommentary throughout, and direct address to the reader – mostly with great success, making T is for Time Travel intellectually stimulating, whilst also spinning a good yarn or two.

The Tales of T is for Time Travel
Rapid-Fire Review

Most of T is for Time Travel’s ten short stories are highly entertaining. 

The first, Another Time, was a little abstract. However, later entries are progressively more interesting and build a wider metanarrative not unlike Cloud Atlas, albeit on a far smaller scale.

Particular highlights include Time Cleaners, which was uncannily reminiscent of the Disney+ Loki series, Wishful Timing, and Tempus Pompeius.

Another Time ⭐⭐

Time to Light ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Time Cleaners ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Wild Times ⭐⭐⭐

Time for Everything ⭐⭐

Better Luck Next Time ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Only Time Will Tell ⭐⭐⭐

Wishful Timing ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Tempus Pompeius ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Behind the Timestream ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Conclusion

T is for Time Travel is well worth your time (pun intended).

It’s smart, well written, and raises some genuinely fascinating time-related conundrums.

The inclusion of a crossword at the end, with clues littered throughout the text, was a particularly impressive (though unexpected) addition. 

Some may find this a little gimmicky; I think it’s a fun experimentation with structural form that encourages re-reading the book. It helps that the stories are, for the most part, well written and exciting to read.

If you’re remotely interested in time travel-related speculative fiction, then definitely give it a go. 

In any case, it’s only just over 120 pages – what have you got to lose?

4/5

T is for Time Travel is available at Amazon in paperback, hardback and eBook. 

Full disclaimer: A review copy was kindly provided by the author and publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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