It’s sometimes hard to fathom some parts of henry and claire’s relationship in the book,like say the fact that gomez,a guy who’s seeing claire’s best friend,but actually has this huge thing for Claire,and despite which, happens to share a decent camaraderie with the detambles.Since the book actually deals with time travel,it falls into the science fiction genre,yet the book manages to relegate the technical details of the protagonist’s condition to a quiet corner,as it tends to rail instead,his emotional turmoil with dealing with life in general.
All that razzmatazz apart,the book actually gives you possibly the best opening scene of any romantic novel in the recent past.sadly,after such a scintillating start,the book begins to fizzle out as you begin to realise,that the book which is written like a diary,is a mish-mash of dates,pop-culture references(an attempt at claiming connoisseurship for all things music),and fragmented images of other characters in the book who might as well have not been part of the story since they’ve very little if at all to do.
The technical part of the book as mentioned earlier,besides constituting a miniscule part of the story,actually has some very large holes in it’s execution.in a particular couplet of scenes,one in the present and one in the future,henry actually tells Claire that even though he can flit through different times,he actually cannot hope to change the future,since he has no hold over it,but in which,Claire scribbling something on a painting while folding it’s edge in the past,finds it exactly the way she’s put it in the present.also,the book never mentions till very late in the narrative if henry’s “condition” as it’s called is shared by many.instead,the book tends to concentrate on the human element more.
The character Ingrid,henry’s first girl,though stereotypical,has some promise,but who,the author bumps off quite early in the narrative,the trouble with which is,the very closeted viewpoint from which the story is told.to be fair,claire’s character is an artist,but rarely ever does Claire exhibit any emotion other than her confused state of mind over how life would be if henry hadn’t been around,earlier on and how long henry’d be around later on in the book.
The resultant output of all this mis-mash is that what could’ve been a brilliant story turns into a morbidly tragic experience,the overhang of which stays long after you’re done reading the book,but not in the way you’ve read a classic,rather in the way you’ve just encountered something that’d have been a classic had it not bent over backwards,infusing intense morbidity in a desperate bid to come across as cult.what a waste.
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