The Technicolor Time Machine Harry Harrison "HERE COMES A SHIP!" The dragon's head rose and fell as the long-ship's oa. The Accidental Time Machine Joe HaldemanTable of Contents Title Page Copyright Page Dedication Chapter 1 Chapter 2 Cha DOWNLOAD PDF. NOW IN PAPERBACK-FROM THE AUTHOR OF MARSBOUND Grad- school dropout Matt Fuller is toiling as a lowly research assistant at MIT when he.
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This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. He's essentially given up on his thesis and works as an assistant to Professor Marsh, and his girlfriend Kara has just dumped him. Having constructed a calibrating machine for the professor's work, Matt hits the "reset" button and watches it blink out of existence, only to return before anyone but him notices. The second time he presses it, it disappears for ten seconds.
Kidnapping the machine, he takes it home and pursues It's and Matt Fuller is a postgrad student in chronophysics at MIT. Kidnapping the machine, he takes it home and pursues some experiments, figuring out that the machine time travels - first it was one second, then 10, then and then seconds. By the time he gets up to three days, he's attached a turtle and a camera to it and tries again. This time the metal machine has shifted off its wooden base, as well.
The camera shows nothing but some grey static for a short time, and the turtle hasn't been gone long enough, in its own time reference, to need water, food or sleep. The clock he had attached shows it was gone for only a minute. Matt calculates that the next time jump will be for 39 days and a bigger distance, and decides to go with it. He needs a metal cage, and borrows an old Ford from his drug-dealer friend Denny. Reappearing a minute later, in his own time, to create a traffic accident, Matt's arrested for the murder of Denny, who died when he saw the car vanish in front of his drug-addled eyes.
When his million-dollar bail is paid by someone who looks like him and who sends him a message, Get in the car and go! The only thing he can do is keep moving forward in time. This book has plenty of promise, but is disappointingly flat. Matt is a non-entity - in fact, none of the characters are fleshed out much and simply function as plot devices, vehicles through which to move the story forward.
Which is ironic, since the story is the characters and can't exist without them. I couldn't even tell you what they looked like.
Not a big deal, but a good writer will create a fully realised and very real character through their personality, their dialogue, their choices, and so you get a very real sense of them without details like what colour hair they have etc. Sadly, Matt doesn't have much of a personality, or charisma, or attributes that make you care one way or the other.
The other disappointing aspect of the novel is the time travelling itself. While there is a bit of a creepy, almost scary atmosphere - jumping forward so far that humans don't even exist anymore tends to make me feel pretty melancholy and blah - it's wasn't terribly imaginative, and lacks realism because it presupposes certain things, such as a very stable environment, for which there is every indication we have royally screwed up.
While there is one neat little twist at the very end, to do with genealogy, the big glaring "who paid Matt's bail and how? Oh, there's a trite explanation, but I was left feeling way more confused than before. By the end of the novel, I was feeling quite apathetic towards the whole story.
What was the point? What message did it convey?
The accidental time machine
I'd say there are a few "messages" concerning the human condition and the fundamental laws of physics etc. I could tell that they were there, but unlike some other books with similar themes, or potent "messages", I couldn't help but think that I could spend oh so many minutes thinking about it, and deduce nothing original from it.
I didn't mind the book while I was reading it, though it took longer than it should have, being short and simply enough written. Now that I'm writing this review and all the negatives are coming out, I'm going to have to revise my rating of 3 and give it a 2: View all 12 comments. Jun 10, Sandi rated it really liked it Shelves: The Accidental Time Machine is the kind of old-fashioned science fiction I loved growing up.
It's got a brevity and tone that's very much like Bradbury or Asimov. I've always been a sucker for time travel stories and this one didn't disappoint.
There was a lot of detail left out that other author probably would have included, but that was fine with me. In current books, authors have a tendency to spell everything out for the reader.
Haldeman doesn't do that. As a result, the reader has to use hi The Accidental Time Machine is the kind of old-fashioned science fiction I loved growing up. As a result, the reader has to use his or her imagination to fill in the blanks.
While this isn't a great book, it was a lot of FUN to read. I had a hard time putting it down, and was sorry when it was over. View 1 comment. Oct 30, Penny rated it it was amazing Shelves: I flew through this book. It gets going on page one and doesn't stop for a moment.
It's non-stop fun, it's unexpected, and it's just fantastic story telling. The name tells you everything you need to know about the story, but not how enjoyable it is! Life is fleeting. Also it isn't. There are a number of iterations of humanity all of which seem as likely as the last. Makes you wonder where we'll be as a society in however many years time Big thumbs up.
Lots of enjoyment in this one. Apr 23, Libby rated it it was ok Shelves: Well, I didn't particularly like the book but I didn't not like it either. Another reader noted that they felt ambivalent about the book and I'd say that's accurate for me as well. It was a somewhat interesting, light read - perfect for a long flight or the beach. The book almost seemed incomplete - missing lots of detail and mo Well, I didn't particularly like the book but I didn't not like it either. The book almost seemed incomplete - missing lots of detail and more like a movie script.
That being said, I don't know if I enjoyed the general plot enough to want the book to be expanded. If you need to kill a few hours on a plane, pick this up.
Otherwise, you are not missing out too much. View all 7 comments.
The Accidental Time Machine
Apr 05, Andy rated it it was amazing Shelves: I have fairly specific requirements for time travel stories. However they treat time travel it has to make sense to me. This book did which is the main reason it got 5 stars. The plot is actually fairly simplistic and there are really only characters none of whom are very deep or rich, but it was quite entertaining. The story follows Matt into the distance future, one leap at a time in a way that reminded me quite a bit of Marooned in Realtime another favorite.
View all 11 comments.
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A couple of years ago, I pounded the Goodreads pavement pretty hard searching for pretty much any time-travel book I could find to add to my ever-growing to-read list a list which has, to my horror, since surpassed 1, books—for every book I periodically cull, ten more pop up in its place. The Accidental Time Machine was one of the books I found. I wish I had st A couple of years ago, I pounded the Goodreads pavement pretty hard searching for pretty much any time-travel book I could find to add to my ever-growing to-read list a list which has, to my horror, since surpassed 1, books—for every book I periodically cull, ten more pop up in its place.
I wish I had started with that series instead, because this book was kind of a dud. Ex-graduate student Matt Fuller accidentally creates a time machine while working as a research assistant for an MIT physics professor. Newly dumped, and even more newly fired, Matt decides to pop off into the future instead of sticking around in the present his time machine only goes one way.
Hijinks ensue. The plot of the book held my attention. Parts of it, particularly the parts at the beginning when Matt is doing his experiments on his time machine and figuring out how it all works, were really interesting to read about.
But as soon as Matt starts interacting with other characters, and then jumping further and further into the future, I was less and less impressed with him, and with the book.
Plus, Matt is kind of a sexist asshole. But he has so little personality to begin with that when he makes so many comments about objectifying women, and then the whole thing later with him view spoiler [ marrying the naive little religious waif who is somehow also open about sex, and turning her into a science sex waif instead hide spoiler ] , it ended up coming off really creepy.
It felt like wish-fulfillment writing. Male wish-fulfillment writing. He only gets his shit together because something he did accidentally blew up physics as he knows it.
He has no emotional arc. That was probably my main complaint, actually, is that all the characters in this are extremely shallow and cliched. The whole book ended up feeling like it thought it was smarter and more profound and innovative than it actually was. It was enjoyable for a quick audiobook read. The narrator Kevin R. At this point, my review feels kind of futile, because I seem to be wishing Haldeman had written almost a completely different book than he did.
I just hope Haldeman is better with military sci-fi than he is with time travel. View all 4 comments. Mar 29, Denis rated it really liked it. I haven't read much of Haldeman's work. I have read "The Forever War" and I don't recall much of it. Just remember that I liked it enough, but did not love it. This one was very unexpected. It was a whole lot of fun. Good time travel story written with a golden age approach.
A little is Heinlein, Silverberg and definitely a Well influence here - protagonist even has a Wena like character tagging along with him. There some sloppy bits and a little questionable motivation issues, but over all it w I haven't read much of Haldeman's work.
There some sloppy bits and a little questionable motivation issues, but over all it was good fun right to the end. At least I don't think they will. It was neither. So I didn't "read" this book, I listened to it; a mode of delivery that I fear may have fatally altered my perception of Haldeman's story because I couldn't stand the narrator.
Kevin R. Free's vocal performance was terrible. Often, he failed to match the emotion that Haldeman's words intended; the voices he provided for different characters occasionally bled into one another, detracting from the flow of the story, forcing me to struggle to figure out who was speaking; and his accents -- Boston, Australian, Imaginary -- were universally unconvincing. I found myself wishing over and over that someone else was reading this book. I also took out Twenty-Thousand Leagues Under the Sea that day, and if my experience with that isn't better I may be finished with audio books for good.
I am not convinced, however, that Kevin R. Free is completely to blame for my disappointment in The Accidental Time Machine. I never seemed to connect to the story itself, and a big part of that had to do with my feelings for the painfully flat protagonist, Matt. I never cared about Matt, and I had a hard time downloading his slacker calm. Whether he was walking into the Massachusetts Institute of Theosophy, being interrogated for the murder of his former drug dealer, turning over his bottle of wine to an insane auction in a distant, future, uber-L.
But get him around a naked woman, a futuristic porn computer, a cuddly ex-girlfriend, or his Nobel Prize winning grandson nee mentor, and he is suddenly Mister Flappable.
And that's his entire personality in two mini-paragraphs. Maybe I can make it even simpler still: He never grows, he never changes, and he ultimately makes a happy life out of mediocrity. What a hero. Sure, there were some clever and likable bits.
Features for Teachers: Accidental Time Traveller
I enjoyed "La" for a while, the artificial intelligence who embodied Los Angeles; I thought the memory helmet was a nice touch; and something about the family Matt caught fish with in the time of the Christers was satisfying. But there was way too much crap. Haldeman referenced countless sci-fi classics without subtlety or inspiration, his ending was too pat, too deus ex machina , and the constantly forward moving action -- jumping, jumping, jumping -- never really made sense to me in connection with Matt's character.
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But it was as if physics had been a careful, elegant house of cards, then Marsh—or rather his earthly avatar, Matthew—had been a playful child who blundered into it and brought it down, not out of malice, but just by accident. Reappearing a minute later, in his own time, to create a traffic accident, Matt's arrested for the murder of Denny, who died when he saw the car vanish in front of his drug-addled eyes.