The Best Time Travel Novels of All Time

The Best Time Travel Novels of All Time

Time travel is a concept we find profoundly fascinating. There is something about the elusive nature of time that captivates us, and that is why we love to indulge in a good time-travel story. Like aliens, distant galaxies, and parallel universes, this is a trope that lends the sci-fi genre its irresistible appeal and it's no surprise that there is always a steady stream of new time-travel stories in both books and movies. To celebrate this beloved genre, here are some of the most cleverly conceived and brilliantly written time-travel novels that will take you on mind-boggling adventures.

1. The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegge

The Time Traveler's Wife

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Henry DeTamble and Clare are made for each other, but Henry suffers from a genetic disorder that makes him susceptible to unexpected, involuntary time travel. This is a tear-jerking, poignant story of a time traveler's struggle to live a life that has some semblance of normality, and the troubling effects that slipping in and out of time produces on his marriage and his deeply passionate love with his wife, Clare. If you don't mind some heartfelt romance thrown into the mix with some spontaneous time-travel, this is the perfect novel for you.

2. 11/22/63 by Stephen King


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The 49th novel by prolific author and master storyteller Stephen King, this is a story of Jake Epping, a high school teacher who travels back in time to prevent the assassination of the United States President John F. Kennedy which took place on November 22, 1963. This novel is a chillingly suspenseful page-turner and a charming portrayal of American life in the late 1950s and early 1960s which will take you on an epic journey to rewrite the course of history.

3. The Time Machine by H.G. Wells

The Time Machine

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Published in 1895, this seminal novel is widely credited as one which popularized the theme of time-travel in the science-fiction genre, in fact, Wells was the first author to coin the term 'time-machine'. In this classic time-travel novel, Wells takes a look at class divisions through the lens of science-fiction and narrates the story of a time-traveler who ventures thousands of years into the future to find society split into two distinct classes, classes which symbolize the duality of human nature and offer a provocative insight into our future.

4. The End of Eternity by Isaac Asimov

The End of Eternity

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Written by one of the greatest science fiction authors of all time, this novel perfectly blends the mystery and thriller genres with time-travel. Andrew Harlan, the protagonist, is a member of an organization known as Eternity which monitors and adjusts the cause and effects of time across eons to ensure the benefit of the greatest number of people in every age. When Harlan falls in love with the non-eternal Noys Lambent, things don't go as smoothly as he had hoped and Harlan finds himself using his powers and knowledge to alter time for his own purposes.

5. Time and Again by Jack Finney

Time and Again

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Simon Morley is a young illustrator in a 1970s advertising agency living a dull life, bored with his routine existence. After he is enlisted in a secret government experiment, Morley finds himself transported back to the year 1882 where he falls in love with a beautiful young woman and ultimately finds himself torn between his lives in the present and the past. A story that is sure to leave an impression on every reader's memory, Time and Again is an emotional interweaving of the troubled present with a nostalgic past. 

6. A Wrinkle in Time by By Madeleine L'Engle

A Wrinkle in Time

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This book by American author Madeleine L'Engle is the introduction to her Time Quintet series and has been in continuous print since its publication in 1962. This is a young-adult novel that tells the story of the Murray children and their friend Calvin O'Keefe as they embark on a perilous journey across time and universe, on a quest to save their father and the world. The novel is a captivating story of rescue and time-travel that deals with themes of good versus evil, spirituality, purpose, and love.

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