This is How You Lose the Time War by Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone is a novel which tells the story of two rival agents who fight to secure different futures.
- 208 pages
- Publisher: Gallery / Saga Press
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1534431004
My rating for This is How You Lose the Time War — 4
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This is How You Lose the Time War by Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone is very difficult to describe, it has sci-fi elements, an espionage adventure story and time travel to boot. None of these elements, however, take the stage as much as the literary narrative.
The time-travel / spy vs. spy is a way to tell a love story in prose, of two lovers engaging in a sophisticated and dangerous dance. I have no idea how the authors manage to pull this book off, but they did a wonderful job.
Even though this book has many elements which would make one think that it is a fast paced romp (I did), it is the opposite. Reading this book takes patience and has to be done slowly and carefully.
While I did enjoy much of the narrative, some of it seemed to be so much over the top. The sentences were so full of metaphors upon metaphors, analogies upon analogies that in some parts I simply lost interest.
Even though the reading wasn’t as smooth in some places, it wasn’t often nor was it too distracting from the excellent prose. The glimpses of history which the authors provide are rich and make one think. Sometimes the spies are in big events, but sometimes they are simply giving a nudge to a metaphorical pebble, which later on (sometimes centuries) will cause a wave, that will be the start of a significant historical event.
This aspect of the book is something I tremendously enjoyed.
At the end, I couldn’t decide if this was an adventure book, a romance, or a tragedy. I would like to say that it was all and more.
Two rivaling time traveling spies, Red and Blue, correspondence through space and time, taunting each other until they fall in love. The two are battling for a future which their respective organizations want to have.
Since the two organization are in a time war, each agent’s correspondence means that they are putting their life on the line. The agents, however, are not alone and each has someone who follows them.
Zohar — Man of la Book
Disclaimer: I got this book for free.
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