While I don’t have a new release out, I’m happy to announce the re-release of my 2013 Christmas novella, Christmas Past, with a brand new cover as part of Entangled’s Scandalous line.
Time-traveling PhD student Sydney Dahlquist’s first mission sounded simple enough—spend two weeks in December 1810 collecting blood samples from the sick and wounded of Wellington’s army, then go home to modern-day Seattle and Christmas with her family. But when her time machine breaks, stranding her in the past, she must decide whether to sacrifice herself to protect the timeline or to build a new life—and embrace a new love—two centuries before her time.
I’ve always loved a good time travel story–I think the idea of getting to actually visit the past is just so seductive to me as a history geek. Christmas Past is my first attempt at the genre, but it won’t be my last. I’ve started work on a story I’ll talk more about in my December post that takes a magical approach to time travel rather than a scientific one. But for this week I thought I’d talk about some of my favorite time travel stories as a reader and viewer. In no particular order…
Outlander. (Though despite that lovely illustration, due to the lack of Starz in my cable package I’m far more familiar with the books.) It’s big and epic, satisfying that part of me that loves a decades-spanning saga. It’s romantic and sexy. And I appreciate how in the later books when most of the action moves to colonial and Revolutionary America, Gabaldon gives a much more nuanced portrayal of both sides of the conflict than your typical Plucky Liberty-Minded Colonists vs. Tyrannical Royalists.
Sleepy Hollow, my current TV obsession, on the other hand, will never win prizes for its nuanced examination of the Revolutionary era–the British in many cases are literal demons. And technically it’s not even a true time travel show, since its man-out-of-time hero Ichabod Crane gets to the future by dying (or close enough to it) in 1781 and getting resurrected in 2013 rather than your traditional time machine or time travel spell. But in the Season 2 finale, Abbie Mills, his 21st-century cop partner in apocalypse-fighting, goes back to the 18th century to save Crane’s life, not to mention all the American history yet to come. Along the way she gets to meet Benjamin Franklin and her own ancestress who first got her family involved in the secret war against evil. (The show is 100% as crazy as it sounds, but at its best, as with this episode, it’s crazy-awesome. And frankly, I’m nervous about including it on this list, since I’m writing this post Thursday evening before the Season 3 mid-season finale airs, so I have no idea if I’ll be giddy and squeeing over crazy-awesome or grumbling, “Why, show, why?” over plain old crazy tomorrow morning when you’re reading this!)
The Star Trek universe goes to the time travel well a lot, but I’m listing First Contact as my example because I have such fond memories of watching it in the theater when it first came out. It was everything I loved about Next Gen Trek, made big-screen and epic.
Doctor Who, of course, is all about time travel…so I’m just listing what remains my favorite two-part pair of episodes, The Empty Child/The Doctor Dances, wherein the Ninth Doctor, Rose Tyler, and Jack Harkness end up in the London Blitz…and just this once, everybody lives!
A Swiftly Tilting Planet was always my favorite of Madeleine L’Engle’s time quintet, probably because of the high stakes (stopping a nuclear war!) and dizzying leaps through multiple times.
What about you? Are you a fan of time travel in fiction? What are some of your favorites?