The Map of Time
The Map of Time (first published in Spanish as El mapa del tiempo) is a science fiction novel by Spanish writer Felix J. Palma. The novel is written from the point of view of the narrator and follows three interwoven story lines. The book has been called "part mystery, part fantasy, and part historical fiction".
The book is the first part of "The Victorian trilogy", with the second book ("The Map Of The Sky" - featuring Wells' "The War Of The Worlds") being released in late 2012.
Felix J. Palma said of the development that the story could not be written from a single point of view nor by a narrator who followed only one character. It required an omnipresent narrator who could tell all of the stories together.
The story follows three interwoven plots:
1. The story of Andrew Harrington, a man who fell desperately in love with "Marie Jeanette Kelly" (or "Mary Kelly"), one of the victims of Jack The Ripper. Harrington falls into a deep depression after discovering Kelly's body, and turns to alcohol and eventually opium to cope with the grief. He eventually decides to commit suicide, but is interrupted by his cousin Charles, who begs him to come with him to meet a man who claims he can travel in time.
2. The story of Claire Haggerty, a "New Woman" and feminist who is deeply unhappy with her life. She is supposed to choose a husband, but most of her suitors are only interested in her finances or in the continuation of their family line. Haggerty stumbles upon "Murray's Time Travel", and meets Captain Derek Shackleton, the man who leads the human race in the battle against the machines in the year 2000.
3. The final section of the story focuses on HG Wells himself, as he tries to discern if the fourth dimension is actually something that can be broken through, or if it is just a storytelling mechanism in stories (like the ones he writes). He discovers the "Map Of Time" in a house in London (that is reputedly haunted), he discovers that time is not a plaything - and his actions could have serious repercussions.
AVClub.com said the book is "packed with flowery language, and it features a playful narrator who's concerned with keeping the reader's attention as he bounces from character to character." The "Washington Post" praised the book, but remarked that "Fans of serious science fiction may find the story too metafictional. (Others may object that it’s clogged with too many adjectives.)" The "Los Angeles Review Of Books" said that a passage in the books (during which HG Wells criticizes some writing) to be similar with problems with Palma's writing "inevitably produc[ing] boredom in the reader, or if not, then a profound aversion to what he is reading", but also stated "Palma demonstrates a real skill at storytelling, especially character development and narrative suspense."
- "Felix J. Palma, author of The Map of Time, answers Ten Terrifying Questions « Booktopia – A Book Bloggers' Paradise – The No. 1 Book Blog for Australia". Blog.booktopia.com.au. Retrieved 2012-01-17.
- Lenny Picker (2011-04-04). "Victorian Time Travel: PW Talks with Felix J. Palma". Publishersweekly.com. Retrieved 2012-01-17.
- Nelson, Samantha (2012-01-13). "Felix J. Palma: The Map Of Time | Books | Book Review". The A.V. Club. Retrieved 2012-01-17.
- Marcus, Richard (2011-07-17). "Book Review: The Map Of Time by Felix J. Palma". seattlepi.com. Retrieved 2012-01-17.
- "Felix J. Palma Biography at Simon & Schuster". Authors.simonandschuster.com. Retrieved 2012-01-17.
- Plain Dealer guest writer. "Felix J. Palma's 'The Map of Time' twists deliciously as a time-traveling thriller". cleveland.com. Retrieved 2012-01-17.
- "The Map of Time | Félix J. Palma". Felixjpalma.es. Retrieved 2012-01-17.