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When physicist Michael Shelborne mysteriously vanishes, his son Shel discovers that he had constructed a time travel device. Fearing his father may be stranded in time—or worse—Shel enlists the aid of Dave Dryden, a linguist, to accompany him on the rescue mission. Their journey through history takes them from the enlightenment of Renaissance Italy through the American Wil When physicist Michael Shelborne mysteriously vanishes, his son Shel discovers that he had constructed a time travel device. Fearing his father may be stranded in time—or worse—Shel enlists the aid of Dave Dryden, a linguist, to accompany him on the rescue mission. Their journey through history takes them from the enlightenment of Renaissance Italy through the American Wild West to the civil-rights upheavals of the 20th century. Along the way, they encounter a diverse cast of historical greats, sometimes in unexpected situations. Yet the elder Shelborne remains elusive. And then Shel violates his agreement with Dave not to visit the future. There he makes a devastating discovery that sends him fleeing back through the ages, and changes his life forever.


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When physicist Michael Shelborne mysteriously vanishes, his son Shel discovers that he had constructed a time travel device. Fearing his father may be stranded in time—or worse—Shel enlists the aid of Dave Dryden, a linguist, to accompany him on the rescue mission. Their journey through history takes them from the enlightenment of Renaissance Italy through the American Wil When physicist Michael Shelborne mysteriously vanishes, his son Shel discovers that he had constructed a time travel device. Fearing his father may be stranded in time—or worse—Shel enlists the aid of Dave Dryden, a linguist, to accompany him on the rescue mission. Their journey through history takes them from the enlightenment of Renaissance Italy through the American Wild West to the civil-rights upheavals of the 20th century. Along the way, they encounter a diverse cast of historical greats, sometimes in unexpected situations. Yet the elder Shelborne remains elusive. And then Shel violates his agreement with Dave not to visit the future. There he makes a devastating discovery that sends him fleeing back through the ages, and changes his life forever.

30 review for Time Travelers Never Die

  1. 4 out of 5

    Sean O'Hara

    Time Travelers Never Die is about a science fiction writer named Jack McDevitt who's read a bunch of historical biographies and decides to write a novel that incorporates them all, even though there's no rhyme or reason why a time traveler would pick these random points in history. The "story" begins with David attending his friend Shel's funeral, only to find, upon returning home, that Shel is waiting for him. Shel and Dave are time travelers, so the fact that they die at some point in time does Time Travelers Never Die is about a science fiction writer named Jack McDevitt who's read a bunch of historical biographies and decides to write a novel that incorporates them all, even though there's no rhyme or reason why a time traveler would pick these random points in history. The "story" begins with David attending his friend Shel's funeral, only to find, upon returning home, that Shel is waiting for him. Shel and Dave are time travelers, so the fact that they die at some point in time doesn't mean much as long as they avoid going to that point in time. We then get the obligatory flashback to explain how they became time travelers, and eventually learn how Shel died. Shel's dad, Michael, actually invented the time machine, building it into an iPod -- er, sorry, "qPod". When Michael doesn't show up for dinner with his son, Shel goes over to his house and finds it empty. The police are no help, but Shadowy Government Agents show an interest in Michael's disappearance. Shel gets a hold of some of his dad time machines and, after figuring out how they work, goes back to find out what happens. Dad gives a big infodump, explaining that this storyverse uses a completely deterministic model of time travel, so anything that will have happened has had happened already and we're just not aware of it. If a time traveler attempts to change anything, he'll either suffer a heart attack or his machine will malfunction and dump him somewhere "safe" for the timeline. Thus Shel's very act of going back to warn his father creates a causality loop that prevents his father from showing up. Dad says not to worry, he'll just make a note to skip ahead in time and show up after Shel went back to warn him. But first he's going to go through with his plans to tour history. Shel returns to his home-time, but his dad never shows up. Deciding that his father must've gone back to visit his hero, Galileo, Shel recruits his friend Dave, who knows Italian, to help him out. But Galileo turns out to be a dead end. So they try the civil rights march in Selma, which Michael had also expressed an interest in. When that doesn't work, they try the Library of Alexandria, and this and that and the other place. Eventually time travel becomes as much a hobby to them as a quest. There's really not much of a plot here. McDevitt might as well have thrown in some musical numbers and Dorothy Lamour and called the book "The Road to Alexandria." Occasionally one of the travelers will get in trouble with the locals and the other fellow will have to come to his rescue using the Bill and Ted theory of temporal mechanics -- i.e., if you want to get into a locked room, just promise yourself that once you're inside, you'll go back ten minutes and unlock the door. Some of these adventures are interesting, but their accumulation doesn't add up to a plot. Even the search for Shel's dad comes off as a threadbare MacGuffin, and the explanation for Shel's death is just an excuse for a Bill and Ted style heist wrapped up in a big timey-wimey ball. The other major problem with the book is that it's like that joke in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy about how time travel has made all times the same. People in Renaissance Italy and ancient Greece don't even seem like foreigners, much less people from pre-modern societies -- in fact, they come across as more modern than the redneck yahoos in Selma, who are the only characters who seem historically realistic. Shel and Dave make little attempt to blend in on their travels apart from learning languages -- which they do preposterously fast, even with dead languages -- but people just accept that they're travelers from distant lands. When Shel shows people a photo of his father, they just say, "Wow, I've never seen a portrait like that! What is it?" And Shel explains that it's some new technique from his land, which satisfies everyone. He even flashes his qPod around a few times without consequences. Overall, the book's a quick, short read, never boring, yet nowhere near as interesting as the premise should be.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Sandi

    When I was a little girl, there was a show on TV called The Time Tunnel. It was one of my favorites. Those time travelers were so cute. Later on, I fell in love with H.G. Wells' The Time Machine. My favorite episodes of The Twilight Zone and Star Trek involved time travel. I even used to watch those old Dr. Who shows on PBS and want to go traveling with the Doctor in the Tardis. Time Travelers Never Die is an old-fashioned time travel novel that reminds me a lot of those time traveling shows in t When I was a little girl, there was a show on TV called The Time Tunnel. It was one of my favorites. Those time travelers were so cute. Later on, I fell in love with H.G. Wells' The Time Machine. My favorite episodes of The Twilight Zone and Star Trek involved time travel. I even used to watch those old Dr. Who shows on PBS and want to go traveling with the Doctor in the Tardis. Time Travelers Never Die is an old-fashioned time travel novel that reminds me a lot of those time traveling shows in the Sixties. While it was absolutely implausible that two guys could travel through time using a hacked iPod, it was a fun ride that took me back to the TV shows I enjoyed as a child. The narration of this audiobook was okay. It took a while to get into the narration because the reading was very choppy. However, the story was good enough to overcome the flawed narration.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Megan

    The person who read this book before me complained about it to me and told me that she didn't want a history lesson with her book. I love history, and I thought that a time travel story without a bit of history would be a lame time travel story indeed, so I picked it up after her. Now I kind of understand where she was going with her complaint. This book is all about the history with its time travel. Boy, is it. The characters really live it up in every possible moment in history (except the one The person who read this book before me complained about it to me and told me that she didn't want a history lesson with her book. I love history, and I thought that a time travel story without a bit of history would be a lame time travel story indeed, so I picked it up after her. Now I kind of understand where she was going with her complaint. This book is all about the history with its time travel. Boy, is it. The characters really live it up in every possible moment in history (except the ones that might put them in danger, like large battles or politically charged situations). This book is absolutely jam-packed with historic references. Unfortunately, most of the time, the history is told to the reader, rather than shown. Large paragraphs filled with historical facts and conjecture wallow in the middle of chapters. We as readers are unsure if the two protagonists actually learned this information or if it's just there to ground us in time. That was one issue I had with the book. Another I had was in the characterization. There are two protagonists, Dave and Shel, who honestly for most of the book seemed pretty interchangeable. I had to keep reminding myself of the relevant facts about each character to remember which was which. The women in this book - ugh. A believable woman doesn't show up until the end of the book and all of the others suffer from the same characterization problem. Each character is so flat and wooden. I couldn't believe the Library of Alexandria was really as it was portrayed. You could have swapped out the references to the 2nd century BC and made it a typical modern library with no problem. And finally, I couldn't believe that both characters became so adept at finding people in time. They would just pick a random day in a year that sounded about right and most often they were lucky. I'm sure the book glossed over a lot of missed hits, but when dealing with history of thousands of years ago and vague records, I couldn't believe they'd actually be able to hunt somebody down through time (and space, since they'd have to search entire countries). Each problem I had with the book is, on its own, pretty small, but they added up to an unfortunately dry and wooden book for me.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Nathan Nipp

    Although admonished not to judge a book by its cover, I frequently set my expectations by what the back cover blurb says, regardless of the fact that it is frequently written by someone in the marketing dept. who not even read the book. Sometimes these expectations are not met, resulting in disappointment. But sometimes, the book is different than its cover in the best of ways. Such was this book. If I had to describe the book in one sentence, it might be, "A far more serious version of Bill and Although admonished not to judge a book by its cover, I frequently set my expectations by what the back cover blurb says, regardless of the fact that it is frequently written by someone in the marketing dept. who not even read the book. Sometimes these expectations are not met, resulting in disappointment. But sometimes, the book is different than its cover in the best of ways. Such was this book. If I had to describe the book in one sentence, it might be, "A far more serious version of Bill and Ted". A good third of the book is spent name checking famous historical events and people, from Winston Churchill to the Spartans at the battle of Thermopylae(that brew-haha from 300) The central mystery of the plot doesn't seem that plausible, but in comparison to all the time-jumping that goes on here, that's hardly a problem. The only difficulty one might have is following the various timelines as they loop around and around each and every chapter. Frequently, a character will do something like open a supposedly locked door then jumping back in time 15 minutes and unlocking that door for themselves... in the future... or it the past? Overall, this book had half-way decent characters and a pretty good story. Worth checking out.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Jackie

    Better than I thought it'd be. Although in some places, I felt the lead characters, Shel and Dave, had a cavalier attitude in their use, (or abuse) of the time travelling device. Still a good book if you like time travelling novels. Better than I thought it'd be. Although in some places, I felt the lead characters, Shel and Dave, had a cavalier attitude in their use, (or abuse) of the time travelling device. Still a good book if you like time travelling novels.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Brooke

    Rather light and fluffy science fiction, a bit like Bill & Ted minus the goofiness. There isn't much conflict driving the plot, just some adventuring and sight-seeing. Rather light and fluffy science fiction, a bit like Bill & Ted minus the goofiness. There isn't much conflict driving the plot, just some adventuring and sight-seeing.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Jerry

    Not as good as I remember it being when I read it some years ago.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Mike

    Well, I don't know. I'm not the kind of guy who typically finishes a book in four days, so I guess the way I ate this up must be a compliment, right? I'm very torn on what to say in this review. Typically I'm a sucker for time travel stories and a sucker for Jack McDevitt, so while this wasn't the best time travel story and it wasn't the best McDevitt story it doesn't seem like something I could realistically hate. Ultimately, I'd say it wasn't great, but it was a fast read an entertaining, so I Well, I don't know. I'm not the kind of guy who typically finishes a book in four days, so I guess the way I ate this up must be a compliment, right? I'm very torn on what to say in this review. Typically I'm a sucker for time travel stories and a sucker for Jack McDevitt, so while this wasn't the best time travel story and it wasn't the best McDevitt story it doesn't seem like something I could realistically hate. Ultimately, I'd say it wasn't great, but it was a fast read an entertaining, so I can't complain too much. Essentially this is the story of Shel and Dave, who come into possession of a pair of handheld time machines when Shel's father, a noted physicist who invented them, goes missing. Shel is told in no uncertain terms by his father to destroy the devices immediately because, you know, they're dangerous. I guess what I liked about Shel and Dave is the way they just... don't care. These guys are not science fiction buffs. They have not studied the causality implications of the Back to the Future series. They don't understand why creating a paradox might be bad. They are, however, history buffs, who get a rush out of meeting historical figures. So they cavalierly travel to every interesting event of note they can think of, meeting Galileo, Hemingway, Calamity Jane, Benjamin Franklin, and a whole host of people that I'm apparently not educated enough to care about. All this is driven by the search for Shel's missing father. Presumably he was gallivanting through history and his time travel device malfunctioned. This is a pretty thin MacGuffin, though. Shel and Dave, not knowing exactly when and where their quarry would be, are left to ask themselves, "If I were a time traveler and history buff, which interesting places would I go?" No doubt they are the places that Mr. McDevitt would go if he had a time machine. There are some very strong, suspenseful moments in this book, particularly in times where clever use of the time machine gets them out of a jam. However, these moments are separated by many highly unnecessary episodes where the characters have a nice chat with Thomas Paine or Aldous Huxley. I can't say I didn't enjoy reading this book. It's well written, a quick read, and for the most part not boring (or at least the boring parts don't last so long as to be distracting), but it wasn't as good as some of McDevitt's other work.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Debbie

    Time Travelers Never Die by Jack McDevitt is a lighthearted look at time travel. There aren’t any heavy scientific explanations – the only thing you are told is that Michael Shelbourne inherits the time travel devices (Q-Pods) from his physicist father. Michael’s father has disappeared, assumed to be dead. His father leaves him a letter asking him to retrieve the Q-Pods and destroy them. Michael eventually realizes exactly what the Q-Pods are and that his father must have somehow stranded himsel Time Travelers Never Die by Jack McDevitt is a lighthearted look at time travel. There aren’t any heavy scientific explanations – the only thing you are told is that Michael Shelbourne inherits the time travel devices (Q-Pods) from his physicist father. Michael’s father has disappeared, assumed to be dead. His father leaves him a letter asking him to retrieve the Q-Pods and destroy them. Michael eventually realizes exactly what the Q-Pods are and that his father must have somehow stranded himself during his time travels. Michael and his friend Dave Dryden, a linguist, set out to try to find Michael’s father. They also have a great time visiting some of the famous moments in history. This was fun, entertaining science fiction. You can’t think too closely about the time travel aspect – it made my head hurt to consider how there were multiple versions of Michael and Dave wandering the world. I enjoyed traveling with them to the Library at Alexandria (they smuggled out some lost literature), visited with Hemingway & Michelangelo, met George Washington and Richard Nixon, and went from ancient Greece to Selma, Alabama.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Jeffrey Jelmeland

    I wish I knew why I always feel like the story is stalling out about two thirds of the way through any of McDevitt's work that I read, but every time I stick with it and ride the story to the end I find that the journey was well worth the effort of moving past that stalling point. Once more his story drew me into the characters, and the characters drew me into the ever unfolding story. Not many authors write such that I actually care about the characters, and start to think of them as actual hum I wish I knew why I always feel like the story is stalling out about two thirds of the way through any of McDevitt's work that I read, but every time I stick with it and ride the story to the end I find that the journey was well worth the effort of moving past that stalling point. Once more his story drew me into the characters, and the characters drew me into the ever unfolding story. Not many authors write such that I actually care about the characters, and start to think of them as actual human beings rather than simply characters in a story, but McDevitt seems to accomplish this feat with ease. In the end it is these characters, and the desire to find out what happens to them that drives me past the point where I wonder if it is worth the effort to continue reading. As always, in the end I find myself happy to have made the effort, and I find that the story comes to a logical conclusion. This particular story tackles the concept of time travel in a very deft manner. Rather than trotting out pseudo-science to explain how or why it works he simply presents it for what it is and moves the story forward. So many other time travel stories that I have read deal with some sort of militant treatment of time travel, harping on the dangers of uncontrolled use or the abuse of it. McDevitt touches on the dangers, but that is all he does with it. Instead of some hard hitting action packed romp in another era we find ourselves following the travels of the primary characters as they simply explore different eras of history. The concept of this approach seems simple, even potentially boring, but McDevitt's deft handling of the story is such that I had no trouble actually feeling like it was possible. The characters did what I likely would have done when presented with the possibilities. Is this a book that I will add to my Must Have list? No, I don't think so, even though it was an enjoyable read. Do I feel enriched by having read the story? Yes, without any doubt I feel that the journey was well worth the trip.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Liviu

    Typical McDevitt book that keeps you engrossed while you do not want to question too much its premises; our bumbling but endearing heroes (Shel and Dave) travel throughout history and have many adventures, most due to their ineptness; the cameos of Aristarchus of Alexandria, the civil rights leaders of the 60's and some of the Founding Fathers are the best, with a Borgia and the goons in the south suitably menacing... A great ending and the book hangs together though it's more Time Traveler's Wi Typical McDevitt book that keeps you engrossed while you do not want to question too much its premises; our bumbling but endearing heroes (Shel and Dave) travel throughout history and have many adventures, most due to their ineptness; the cameos of Aristarchus of Alexandria, the civil rights leaders of the 60's and some of the Founding Fathers are the best, with a Borgia and the goons in the south suitably menacing... A great ending and the book hangs together though it's more Time Traveler's Wife (though with a missing father rather than romance) than "serious" sf; there is room for more and I would welcome another book in the same universe though it stands well on its own; I know there is an Alex Benedict next from Mr. McDevitt though since Hutch is retired maybe we see more Q-pods time travelers after... Among the best lighter sff of 09

  12. 5 out of 5

    Melissa McShane

    Slow to start, uninspired treatment of the subject, too many other good books to read, didn't bother finishing. Slow to start, uninspired treatment of the subject, too many other good books to read, didn't bother finishing.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Matthew Hester

    I'm not sure what to think about this book. I feel like I want to really like it, but keep asking myself: why? Nothing in this book is in any way original. I suppose when it comes to writing a story about the ultimate science-fiction cliche that's bound to happen; but there are enough recent examples I could point to to show that even tired concepts like time travel can be given a unique spin. It's pretty obvious from the get go McDevitt wasn't going for originality, so I can't really criticize him I'm not sure what to think about this book. I feel like I want to really like it, but keep asking myself: why? Nothing in this book is in any way original. I suppose when it comes to writing a story about the ultimate science-fiction cliche that's bound to happen; but there are enough recent examples I could point to to show that even tired concepts like time travel can be given a unique spin. It's pretty obvious from the get go McDevitt wasn't going for originality, so I can't really criticize him for failing, since he seemed successful in what he attempted to accomplish. Maybe I just feel disappointed, since there was definitely potential to create something more mesmerizing. I also begin to wonder if McDevitt really cared about writing a story at all, or just used this as an excuse to explore all the historical events he was interested in. Sure there is definitely a plot present, but it's thinner than the paper the book was written on! (which is extra poignant given that I read it as a digital ebook.) There were a lot of threads left open, almost as if he decided to write a more epic story, but changed his mind part-way through. The really infuriating part about it, was that he didn't even pick up one of these pieces to write an actual ending. There was a very obvious part, about 2/3 of the way through where you could tell McDevitt was setting the stage on how the story would end. He threw in a lot of hints and conjecture (some more subtle than others) regarding the main protagonist which gave a tantalizing tease on where he was taking the story. While I was a little upset that I had "figured out" his ending so easily, I was even more upset when I came to the crushing realization that I had been duped all along and the real ending was even less clever and more mundane that I imagined. Normally I can accept the occasional red-herring, but the real reveal better be pretty impressive to forgive the feeling of being cheated, and this one feel quite short of the mark. Overall the book was certainly an easily read, and even a rather enjoyable one despite it's deep flaws. As a fan of both science-fiction and history, this book did well to keep me interested in the milieu, even if the story and characters had me wanting. So in the end; what did I think of this book? I think I'd like someone to invent a real time-machine and give it to Jack McDevitt; that way he could go back in time and publish a better version of this book.

  14. 5 out of 5

    An Odd1

    When his father Michael disappears, leaving instructions to destroy hand-sized devices he calls "converters", Shel accidentally finds the inventions enable time travel. To find his parent and meet famous men, he enlists his best friend. Dave, a linguist, translates in Renaissance Italy, helps find lost Sophocles plays in the library of Alexander the Great, and gets jailed at a negro rights demonstration. Shel wants to settle down with Helen, but somebody's body is found burned in his bed and Dav When his father Michael disappears, leaving instructions to destroy hand-sized devices he calls "converters", Shel accidentally finds the inventions enable time travel. To find his parent and meet famous men, he enlists his best friend. Dave, a linguist, translates in Renaissance Italy, helps find lost Sophocles plays in the library of Alexander the Great, and gets jailed at a negro rights demonstration. Shel wants to settle down with Helen, but somebody's body is found burned in his bed and Dave gets arrested for his murder. The pair visit mostly men, important to American history (wars, disasters), English literature, and Christian religion. This is not UK Dr Who aliens. But the recitation of dates and name-dropping becomes like the most boring grade school class, concentrating on Presidents, celebrities, notables. How about women? No index, trips blur, I skipped lots, some maybe they did. Cleopatra, Marie Antoinette, Queens Elizabeth, Mary, Victoria? Eleanore of Aquitaine, Amelia Earheart, Lucrezia Borgia, Catherine the Great? Unusual animals - dinosaurs? Places - Egypt, Africa, Venice? Landmarks when built - pyramids? Events - Olympics, not massacre of Tsar's family? Peaceful cultures - are there any? I'd rather along the lines of Museum Secrets - tickles my curiosity, investigates historical mysteries. Examples: a crucifix is more likely an X than T-shape, a burned town held a recipe for cypress perfume from an extinct tree. An Israeli leader triumphed over Rome, until the Emperor sent too many troops. ROM lost Bromosaurus (1962-2007 = 45 years), world's largest dinosaur, always found headless, still finding parts. official playlist http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LJ-o0V... I guessed too much: answers to his dad and his death. The style is flat, reminiscent of worst school texts: He went there. He did that. When they zip back and forth to solve trouble they get into, I end up confused. (view spoiler)[ His dad is happy in the past near Galileo, and wants to stay. Shel is not the body and takes Helen to stay in the future, funded by sure investments. (hide spoiler)]

  15. 5 out of 5

    Robin

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. (This is a review of the kindle version) Who doesn't love a good time travel novel? Join Adrian Shelbourne and David Dryden as they tour the past, and learn some lessons about the future. I am not familiar with Mr. McDevitt's work, but I enjoyed this book. Shel and David were believable characters with **spoiler alert!! spoiler alert!!** time travel devices. They go back in time and meet famous people, often before they were famous. They visit events, including the March from Selma in Alabama. They (This is a review of the kindle version) Who doesn't love a good time travel novel? Join Adrian Shelbourne and David Dryden as they tour the past, and learn some lessons about the future. I am not familiar with Mr. McDevitt's work, but I enjoyed this book. Shel and David were believable characters with **spoiler alert!! spoiler alert!!** time travel devices. They go back in time and meet famous people, often before they were famous. They visit events, including the March from Selma in Alabama. They meet Ben Franklin. Exactly what most people would do. There was also some discussion on how loops and paradoxes are created, and how to avoid them, and what sort of influence you can exert on the past to change your present. There was no discussion on how not to become one of your own grandparents, but I think Douglas Adams had the definitive word on that anyway. ;-) The only thing I didn't just love about this book was that the author constantly changed how he referred to the main character. Sometimes it was Adrian, sometimes it was Shel, sometimes it was Dr. Shelbourne (who is also Adrian's father.). It was distracting. Not terrible, but you notice. This should in no way influence whether or not you read the book. If you like time travel stories (and, coincidentally, you like the Thursday Next books and like the whole sub-plot about her father), this is a good one. You'll be trying to modify your ipod (because there's actually not an app for that. Today.), and looking at your blackberry with a new-found respect.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Chess Desalls

    I was all ready to give this book 4 stars, until I read the Epilogue. :o)

  17. 4 out of 5

    Blake Billings

    Wow, this book was fantastic! I didn't know much going in. I just saw the title and decided to pick it up. I have decided it's very similar to the movie "About Time." Not directly in that it's a love story, although there is some of that too. I always thought "About Time" was the best title for that movie. The whole narrative really is just about time and how people spend it. And that is really where I see the similarity in "Time Travelers Never Die." Unlike some other time traveler type stories, Wow, this book was fantastic! I didn't know much going in. I just saw the title and decided to pick it up. I have decided it's very similar to the movie "About Time." Not directly in that it's a love story, although there is some of that too. I always thought "About Time" was the best title for that movie. The whole narrative really is just about time and how people spend it. And that is really where I see the similarity in "Time Travelers Never Die." Unlike some other time traveler type stories, I didn't feel like this story had huge action set pieces. There were times of peril, but even those were at a specific pace. I hesitate to really go into details because I think discovering each bit of the story as Shell and Dave discover it is part of the fun. And I think that's really what got me with this story. I loved going with them on their travels. I enjoyed their relationship and the eagerness for new experiences. I will definitely be looking to pick something else up by Jack McDevitt.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Tom Rowe

    This is a fun time travel book featuring a pair of smart time travelers who make the utmost of their ability to travel through time. While there is no real peril for our intrepid heroes (because they can time travel), it is fun to see how they use time travel to get out of various scrapes and such. This is not a spoiler because the title gives it all away. Enjoy! I recommend.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Dan

    I really enjoyed this book. It wasn’t the greatest piece of literature ever written but the author did a good job of mixing up time travel and all of the paradoxes that go along with it. I recommend this book to anyone who enjoys the classic Back to the Future time travel genre.

  20. 4 out of 5

    J Wells

    Slightly plotless but I enjoyed the ride, loved the possibilities it presented.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Glen Robinson

    I'm a fan of time-travel stories. Let me clarify that: I'm a fan of well-written time-travel stories. Time travel is one of those memes that sounds great and exciting but can lead you down either the rabbit hole of cliches such as "let's kill Adolph Hitler when he's a little boy," or "what happens if I kill my grandfather as a little boy?" OR can get bogged down in time paradoxes so complex that even the author seems to be lost. It takes a good writer with a good premise to make a great time tra I'm a fan of time-travel stories. Let me clarify that: I'm a fan of well-written time-travel stories. Time travel is one of those memes that sounds great and exciting but can lead you down either the rabbit hole of cliches such as "let's kill Adolph Hitler when he's a little boy," or "what happens if I kill my grandfather as a little boy?" OR can get bogged down in time paradoxes so complex that even the author seems to be lost. It takes a good writer with a good premise to make a great time travel story. Enter Jack McDevitt. I became acquainted with him through his hard science fiction space stories. He's one of those rare writers who can write science fiction that doesn't talk down to you, doesn't bore you and yet still tells a great story. This one is no exception. The premise is a famous physicist who has two sons. The story begins with the disappearance and supposed death of the father. When he is declared dead, the second son inherits an envelope with a message for him to destroy these three devices referred to as Q-pods, that are later described as similar to game machines. The son, Shel, soon discovers that the Q-pods are time machines. With his friend Dave, who is a language professor, they discover what happened to his father and go on a series of adventures themselves. What made me feel good about this story is that McDevitt never falls into the typical cliches that come with time travel stories. At the same time, he brings up both some interesting new challenges and some considerations or possibilities for those who have all the time in the universe on their hands. The story is well written, the characters are interesting, there is a sense of humor to the story, and I read through the whole thing in just over a day. Highly recommended.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Samantha

    Time travel is a tricky subject. There are so many variations on the theme, with so many potential difficulties, that it can be challenging to present it in a truly believable way. Now, I'm the sort of reader who's willing to set nitpicky details aside if the story is engaging enough, which almost certainly plays into my feelings on this book. 'Time Travelers' tells the story of buddies Shel and Dave as they journey through the ages. At first on a quest to locate Shel's father, eventually it turn Time travel is a tricky subject. There are so many variations on the theme, with so many potential difficulties, that it can be challenging to present it in a truly believable way. Now, I'm the sort of reader who's willing to set nitpicky details aside if the story is engaging enough, which almost certainly plays into my feelings on this book. 'Time Travelers' tells the story of buddies Shel and Dave as they journey through the ages. At first on a quest to locate Shel's father, eventually it turns into an eon-spanning vacation of sorts, with stops around the world. It's quite fun joining them as they attend numerous historical events and visit with people like Aristotle and Voltaire. A few mind-bendy twists, the angles that time travel is so good at providing, occur later in the book, adding to the fun. McDevitt's writing style is, as always, warm and engaging, very reader-friendly. Its safe to say that, if not particularly intellectually stimulating, its a quick, easy and enjoyable read. I suspect many of the time travel details would fall apart under close scrutiny. If you're sensitive to such things, I don't think this book will be your cup of tea. But if you're mostly just interested in a fun story about likeable individuals having fantastic experiences that the rest of us can only dream about, this book fills that niche neatly.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Jeff

    Your Dad disappears from his home in suburban Philadelphia. There is evidence that he went in, but never came out (all the doors and windows are locked from the inside; his keys and personal effects are inside). But he has left two devices, about the size of a walkman, in your care. As you wait to hear from the police searching for your Dad's whereabouts, you experiment with the controls on one of the devices and suddenly find yourself half way across the state of Pennsylvania a day later! Welcom Your Dad disappears from his home in suburban Philadelphia. There is evidence that he went in, but never came out (all the doors and windows are locked from the inside; his keys and personal effects are inside). But he has left two devices, about the size of a walkman, in your care. As you wait to hear from the police searching for your Dad's whereabouts, you experiment with the controls on one of the devices and suddenly find yourself half way across the state of Pennsylvania a day later! Welcome to what you will soon learn is the world of time traveling. Dad is eventually found and so is a whole new way of life. McDevitt unfolds the exhilaration, the thrill, the fear, and the emotional addiction (and devastation) of being a time traveler. Homage is paid to some of the classic tropes of time travel novels that have gone before, but the author brings a common logic and modern spin to the canon, as well. McDevitt also has fun with the paradox of meeting yourself in your own past. Its a great way to create the perfect alibi when the police ask where you were on the night of... Remember, Time Travelers Never Die, but traveling can certainly give you a headache, if not a heart attack!

  24. 4 out of 5

    Erik Dreiling

    This is a fun adventure through Time book. The two main characters, Adrian Shelborne and David Dryden, travel between the Past and the Future, interacting with many historical figures along the way. Their purpose for all this time traveling is to find the Time displaced father of Adrian, noted physicist Michael Shelborne. The eras Adrian and David travel to are written with crystal clarity and it's easy to envision all these long lost places. The model of time travel McDevitt uses is one that de This is a fun adventure through Time book. The two main characters, Adrian Shelborne and David Dryden, travel between the Past and the Future, interacting with many historical figures along the way. Their purpose for all this time traveling is to find the Time displaced father of Adrian, noted physicist Michael Shelborne. The eras Adrian and David travel to are written with crystal clarity and it's easy to envision all these long lost places. The model of time travel McDevitt uses is one that deals with fixed time lines; that is to say, anything that has happened cannot be changed because that's the way history recorded it. I'm not a particular fan of this kind of time travel, but it suits the story well. The only real negative thing I have to say about the book is that the historical characters all kind of sound the same; the dialogue is a bit stiff and clunky at times. This, however, did not detract from my enjoyment of the book. I highly recommend it to anyone that enjoys a good literary trip through Time.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Jamie

    This was just a fun book, plain and simple, and a great read. I am a big fan of time-travel stories. Although not quite as much fun as Joe Haldeman's The Accidental Time Machine, the story itself was enjoyable. The character's romp through time is very much the kind of journey I'd want to take if I had access to a time machine. There were clever uses of time-travel paradoxes throughout the story, and it was fun feeling like I was getting to meet famous people from history. As far as time travel This was just a fun book, plain and simple, and a great read. I am a big fan of time-travel stories. Although not quite as much fun as Joe Haldeman's The Accidental Time Machine, the story itself was enjoyable. The character's romp through time is very much the kind of journey I'd want to take if I had access to a time machine. There were clever uses of time-travel paradoxes throughout the story, and it was fun feeling like I was getting to meet famous people from history. As far as time travel stories go, it was not on par with Robert Silverberg's Up the Line, but it was a lot of fun (a la Heinlein) and I'd recommend it to fans of time travel science fiction.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Craig

    This one's quite a bit different from McDevitt's space adventures, but I found it to be thoroughly enjoyable. It's a very good time travel novel; I'd rank it up there with Heinlein's THE DOOR INTO SUMMER and Gerrold's THE MAN WHO FOLDED HIMSELF. I didn't think that the characters were quite as well developed as his usual standards (nor was the plot quite as tightly developed), because his obvious enthusiasm for the subject matter pretty much overwhelmed everything else. It's a travelogue of his This one's quite a bit different from McDevitt's space adventures, but I found it to be thoroughly enjoyable. It's a very good time travel novel; I'd rank it up there with Heinlein's THE DOOR INTO SUMMER and Gerrold's THE MAN WHO FOLDED HIMSELF. I didn't think that the characters were quite as well developed as his usual standards (nor was the plot quite as tightly developed), because his obvious enthusiasm for the subject matter pretty much overwhelmed everything else. It's a travelogue of his favorite historical figures and events, and he he has quite a time (heh) speculating about and exploring them. If James P. Hogan had collaborated with Charles Sheffield on a novelization of "Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure" I think they would have come up with something like this current novel. I suggest it highly for history buffs.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Trent Mikesell

    This wasn't my favorite of his books, but he is an excellent science fiction writer. In this time travel story, the two main characters find a device that allows them to visit any time period (in the future or past). Certain restrictions are given on how they can influence time, and it's always interesting to me to see how authors play around with the obvious paradoxes that arise with time travel. All authors do something a little bit different. Someone should make a compilation of all the rules This wasn't my favorite of his books, but he is an excellent science fiction writer. In this time travel story, the two main characters find a device that allows them to visit any time period (in the future or past). Certain restrictions are given on how they can influence time, and it's always interesting to me to see how authors play around with the obvious paradoxes that arise with time travel. All authors do something a little bit different. Someone should make a compilation of all the rules from different time travel books; that would be interesting to read (at least to me). I enjoyed this for the most part although I found the ending extremely weak.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Brett

    Finished "Time Travelers Never Die" by Jack McDevitt. Of all the time travel books and movies I've read/seen so far (and there are a LOT of them), this one is the lamest. It's not that the writing was necessarily bad. It's just that the two protagonists were just that stupid throughout. I was amused when near the end they were described as a comedy duo because of their differences, since throughout the story I was thinking it should've been called, "Laurel and Hardy Find a Time Machine." Or Abbo Finished "Time Travelers Never Die" by Jack McDevitt. Of all the time travel books and movies I've read/seen so far (and there are a LOT of them), this one is the lamest. It's not that the writing was necessarily bad. It's just that the two protagonists were just that stupid throughout. I was amused when near the end they were described as a comedy duo because of their differences, since throughout the story I was thinking it should've been called, "Laurel and Hardy Find a Time Machine." Or Abbott and Costello. Maybe it was Laurel and Costello.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Tomislav

    This stand-alone novel uses the time travel model where all attempts at change turn out to have been what really happened in the first place. No changes to history can happen and no dividing up into multiple universes. In this deterministic universe, accidental time travelers Shel and Dave find themselves entangled in both past and future events including the march on Selma, the library at Alexandria, and the death of Socrates. Very engaging logical puzzles, believable characters, but somehow it This stand-alone novel uses the time travel model where all attempts at change turn out to have been what really happened in the first place. No changes to history can happen and no dividing up into multiple universes. In this deterministic universe, accidental time travelers Shel and Dave find themselves entangled in both past and future events including the march on Selma, the library at Alexandria, and the death of Socrates. Very engaging logical puzzles, believable characters, but somehow it still felt lightweight thematically. Good summer reading, I think.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Randy

    Michael Shelborne learns after his father disappears that he'd invented a time machine. Recruiting his friend, Dave Dryden, a linguist, the pair begin a hunt through time looking for the elder Shelborne. It's addictive and they visit all the most famous eras, places, people, of time. The paradoxes pile up and then they begin to go downtime, to the future. The consequences could be catastrophic. Michael Shelborne learns after his father disappears that he'd invented a time machine. Recruiting his friend, Dave Dryden, a linguist, the pair begin a hunt through time looking for the elder Shelborne. It's addictive and they visit all the most famous eras, places, people, of time. The paradoxes pile up and then they begin to go downtime, to the future. The consequences could be catastrophic.

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