“A nice, complex journey…Mr. Chiocchi is a brilliant writer…”
Time travel. Paradoxes. Alternate realities. Ripples. What happens if you run into yourself from the past? Can you change the past or not? Can you go back and kill your grandfather and erase yourself from existence? And if so, then who went back into time to kill your grandfather? These thoughts always go through my mind when I ponder reading about time travel. Time Framed by Roger Chiocchi was no different in that regard; however, that’s not to say it wasn’t unique.
The Pennfield family has been cursed for generations. There is a malevolent spirit haunting the men of the family because of an event that occurred in the 1600’s. Jimmy Mashimoto-Pennfield, of the year 2052, would like to make sure that this spirit skips him. However, Christopher Pennfield in the year 2007 would like to keep this spirit from causing harm to his cousin Ship Pennfield. This would mean – due to the timing of the curse – it would absolutely strike Mr. Mashimoto-Pennfield. A battle of wills – and time – commences. What will the final timeline actually look like?
When I first read the blurb for this book, I thought that it was going to be a typical time travel story. What I actually read was far from it. There is no actual time travel but rather an influencing of the timeline. It was a unique perspective for the story which I appreciated since time travel fiction is quite prevalent. This also paved the way for more of a supernatural element to be included in the way of a ghost haunting the family and visions.
I also enjoyed the characters. The main protagonists in the story were not really either fully good or fully evil but a mixture of the two. This always makes them seem more realistic to me. Christopher Pennfield has quite the drinking problem, but yet wants to save his nephew from pain and torment. In spite of the realism of the characters, I did feel that there were too many to keep up with.
There were multiple characters whom we followed. We had the three main characters, Christopher, Ship and Jimmy Mashimoto-Pennfield and everyone that they came into contact with. Not only that, we then had alternate timelines from each of the three characters. I’m not sure that this could be avoided, but it does create some confusion for the reader. I will say, though, that the author was very deliberate in telling the reader which year and reality we were following. I appreciated this, as the structure is rather complex.
In addition to the complexity of the issue of time travel and the nature of following multiple characters through alternate realities, there is one section where the author delves deeper into the physics of time travel. Mr. Chiocchi starts discussing physics formulas of which the simplest is v > c. Honestly, this went way over my head. It contributed to the plausibility of the subject of altering time but is more advanced than most readers would care to find in a pleasure read.
Furthermore, the length of the novel is prohibitively long for some. At just over 700 pages, it’s not a book that you’ll want to take along for a weekend trip, especially considering the subject. While the book was never dull, it is still a commitment not to be taken lightly.
There were a few grammar errors here and there in this story, but with over 700 pages, I think that’s too be expected. It wasn’t anything too distracting, nor were they too numerous. I enjoyed reading Time Framed, though I believe that the audience is somewhat limited. For that reason, I rate the book 3 out of 4 stars. I recommend it for those that enjoy a nice, complex journey through the subject of altering time that includes some supernatural elements. I have no doubt that Mr. Chiocchi is a brilliant writer, and I am looking forward to seeing what he comes up with in the future. I hope, perhaps, it’s something that a few more people would be able to enjoy and appreciate. kandscreeley, Onlinebookclub.org