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Book Review

‘The Timekeeper’

10/9/2012

Courtesy of Beaverdale Books
Review by Barb Palar
Hyperion Books
9/4/12
$ 24.99
240 pp

Mitch Albom, who brought us “Tuesdays with Morrie” and “Have a Little Faith,” has woven another tale to help us reflect and consider why we are here and how we should use the time that we have been given. In his latest, a quick-moving story, the inventor of the clock is punished for trying to measure God’s greatest gift: time.                

Dor first invented the measurement of time 4,000 years ago. While he is spending all of his days inventing the world’s first timekeeping mechanism, he has already lost sight of the things that had previously brought him pleasure, including the beautiful sunset that he celebrated with his wife every evening. When his wife becomes gravely ill, he tries to manipulate time in order to save her. And for that he is punished with eternal life as Father Time.                

“Return to the world,” God tells him. “Witness how man counts his moments.”                

God tells Dor to find two people: one who wants too much time, and one who wants too little. He returns to our world and meets Victor and Sarah and tries to teach them the true meaning of time before it’s too late.                

Victor is a successful businessman with terminal cancer who believes it is his duty to stay alive for the betterment of the world. He spends his last days, and millions of dollars, on cryonics to freeze his body indefinitely without telling his wife. Sarah is an overweight, anxious teenager who wants to end her life after her first experience with failed love.                

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Each character comes to life with Albom’s magical prose but the characters aren’t really the heart of the tale. Time is the message that Albom, the master storyteller with his sense of drama and impeccable rhythm, portrays through them. CV

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