Time travel is definitely one of my favorite topics in speculative fiction. Honestly, I don’t know how anyone can’t love reading about it, right? Just thinking about time travel really sets things in motion in your head where you start imagining the possibilities, and if you’re anything like me, then you start thinking about string theory and alternate dimensions – and before you know it you’re geeking out and you haven’t even finished reading your book! Well, if that sounds like a geeky good time to you, then some of the cool time travel books listed below should definitely make their way to your TBR list. There’s a good chance that you’ve already read some of these, but look around and see if you might be able to find something that you haven’t. And if your favorite time travel book didn’t make the cut, leave it in the comments so that I can check it out!
The Anubis Gates (Ace Science Fiction) – Tim Powers
This classic sci fi book dates back to the mid-1980’s (if I recall correctly) and won all sorts of awards for being a really awesome time travel book. And guess what – it’s a pretty great read!
Here’s a quick synopsis of this book: The colonization of Egypt by western European powers is the launch point for power plays and machinations. Steeping together in this time-warp stew are such characters as an unassuming Coleridge scholar, ancient gods, wizards, the Knights Templar, werewolves, and other quasi-mortals, all wrapped in the organizing fabric of Egyptian mythology. In the best of fantasy traditions, the reluctant heroes fight for survival against an evil that lurks beneath the surface of their everyday lives.
You can download this to your Kindle or get a paperback copy. I suggest going the paperback route – get a used copy and save yourself some cash.
Unhappenings – Edward Aubry
I’m actually in the middle of reading this book right now, but I’m confident in what I’ve read thus far that it’s worthy of this list. I dare you to read the Kindle sample and not be intrigued enough to buy it for yourself. Plus, the cover is wicked cool.
Here’s a synopsis: When Nigel Walden is fourteen, the UNHAPPENINGS begin. His first girlfriend disappears the day after their first kiss with no indication she ever existed. This retroactive change is the first of many only he seems to notice.
Several years later, when Nigel is visited by two people from his future, he hopes they can explain why the past keeps rewriting itself around him. But the enigmatic young guide shares very little, and the haggard, incoherent, elderly version of himself is even less reliable. His search for answers takes him fifty-two years forward in time, where he finds himself stranded and alone.
And then he meets Helen.
Brilliant, hilarious and beautiful, she captivates him. But Nigel’s relationships always unhappen, and if they get close it could be fatal for her. Worse, according to the young guide, just by entering Helen’s life, Nigel has already set into motion events that will have catastrophic consequences. In his efforts to reverse this, and to find a way to remain with Helen, he discovers the disturbing truth about the unhappenings, and the role he and his future self have played all along.
Equal parts time-travel adventure and tragic love story, Unhappenings is a tale of gravely bad choices, and Nigel’s struggle not to become what he sees in the preview of his worst self.
You can get this book for for your Kindle, or buy a paperback copy.
Timebound – Rysa Walker
This is one of those books where the cover catches my eye whenever I see it online or on a shelf. So, it comes as no surprise that it’s been wildly popular, and probably one of the books on here that you’ve already read. This one does have the bonus of being part of a series.
Synopsis: When Kate Pierce-Keller’s grandmother gives her a strange blue medallion and speaks of time travel, sixteen-year-old Kate assumes the old woman is delusional. But it all becomes horrifyingly real when a murder in the past destroys the foundation of Kate’s present-day life. Suddenly, that medallion is the only thing protecting Kate from blinking out of existence.
Kate learns that the 1893 killing is part of something much more sinister, and her genetic ability to time travel makes Kate the only one who can fix the future. Risking everything, she travels back in time to the Chicago World’s Fair to try to prevent the murder and the chain of events that follows.
Changing the timeline comes with a personal cost—if Kate succeeds, the boy she loves will have no memory of her existence. And regardless of her motives, does Kate have the right to manipulate the fate of the entire world?
Departure – A.G. Riddle
You probably recognize this author’s name thanks to the crazy successful Origin Mystery series (book one is The Atlantis Gene). And if you haven’t read this book, I suggest you get to it. Why? Because the movie rights have been bought by FOX and it will be hitting the big screen some time in the near future. Plus, it sounds pretty cool.
Synopsis: Harper Lane has problems. In a few hours, she’ll have to make a decision that will change her life forever. But when her flight from New York to London crash-lands in the English countryside, she discovers that she’s made of tougher stuff than she ever imagined.
As Harper and the survivors of Flight 305 struggle to stay alive in the aftermath of the crash, they soon realize that this world is very different from the one they left. Their lives are connected, and some believe they’ve been brought here for a reason.
In addition to Harper, several other passengers seem to hold clues about why Flight 305 crashed. There’s:
Nick Stone, an American on his way to a meeting with The Gibraltar Project, an international group dedicated to building a dam across the Strait of Gibraltar and draining the Mediterranean.
Sabrina Schröder, a German scientist who has unknowingly sealed the fate of half the flight’s passengers.
Yul Tan, a Chinese-American computer scientist who has just made the breakthrough of a lifetime: a quantum internet capable of transmitting more data, farther, faster than ever thought possible. His invention, however, does much more than he ever dreamed possible.
With time running out to save the survivors of Flight 305, Harper and Nick race to unravel the conspiracy that crashed their plane. As they put the pieces together, they discover that their decisions have already doomed one world and will soon determine the future of ours.
Get your Kindle copy NOW while you can because it’s only available for a limited time because Harper Collins is going to release a more expensive hardcover version very soon!
Transgression: A Time-Travel Suspense Novel (City of God Book 1) – R.S. Ingermanson
This is book one of a time travel series, which is pretty sweet. There are only three books available and I’m not sure if others will be released. This is considered Christian fiction as well, so keep that mind if it’s something you’re specifically looking for or something that you want to avoid. And there’s definitely some romance elements at play here.
Here’s the synopsis: What if you were studying for your Ph.D. in archaeology and decided to take a break from your crummy life by working on an archaeological dig in Israel?
What if you met a great guy in Jerusalem who happened to be a world-famous theoretical physicist working on a crazy idea to build a wormhole that might make time-travel possible … someday?
What if he had a nutball colleague who turned the theory into reality — and then decided to use YOU as a guinea pig to make sure it was safe?
What if the nutball had a gun and went on a crazy, impossible mission to hunt down and kill the apostle Paul?
It’s A.D. 57 when Rivka Meyers walks out of the wormhole into a world she’s only studied in books. Ancient Jerusalem is awesome! Rivka can’t believe her friend Ari Kazan’s theory actually worked. But when she runs into Ari’s whacko colleague, Damien West, in the Temple, Rivka starts to smell a rat.
When Ari discovers that Damien and Rivka have gone through a wormhole that’s on the edge of collapse, he has to make a horrible choice: Follow them and risk never coming back — or lose the woman of his dreams forever.
At the time of this writing, you can get this book from Amazon! So, hurry and get your copy.
Glassford Girl: Part 1 (The Emily Heart Time Jumper) – Jay J. Falconer
I have not read this book, but the premise sounds interesting. It’s geared more toward a young adult audience, but should still be a fun read for those of us that have long aged out of that category.
Synopsis: Teleportation. Telepathy. Superior strength and speed. Terrifying new abilities she never wanted. Abilities she must learn to control.
Emily Heart is homeless and living on the street, fighting to stay alive in Glassford Park. But it won’t be easy, even when time slows and she gets fast. Not when any burst of emotion could send her randomly jumping across time and space, arriving naked and alone.
Emily doesn’t quite know what she is, or what she’s capable of, but she knows what she can’t afford to do — feel anything.
And she can’t afford to make any mistakes.
Get prepared for what readers are calling “a thrilling, non-stop ride that you won’t be able to put down.”
Nightstalkers (Area 51: The Nightstalkers) – Bob Mayer
This military scifi is not my typical type of reading, but it does seem like a good action-packed book that just happens to deal with time travel.
Synopsis: Staff Sergeant Winthrop Carter has just been drafted into the Nightstalkers—an elite group of soldiers that…
Actually, he’s not quite sure what they do.
Born from the Area 51 initiative, the Nightstalkers defy sanity and decorum and include among their ranks Moms, a Black Ops trainee too extreme for Special Forces; Doc, a scientific crackpot; Roland, the weapons enthusiast; and Mac, a contemporary MacGyver. All of them take their orders from the elusive Ms. Jones, who everyone claims is just a hologram.
Those orders include tracking down and sealing tears in our reality that are releasing interdimensional beings known only as Fireflies—creatures that take control of both living and inanimate matter in order to unleash wanton destruction.
Just as Carter is settling in, a rogue scientist triggers a fresh invasion of Fireflies that swarm a swanky gated community. Now it’s up to Carter and his new teammates to neutralize the threat while figuring out who’s behind the breach.
You can read this book for your Kindle, or order a copy in paperback.
11/22/63 – Stephen King
Yeah, Stephen King isn’t exactly the first name to come to mind when you think of time travel books, but there is no denying that this is one really great time travel novel. And it doesn’t hurt that it comes from a great writer like King.
Synopsis: On November 22, 1963, three shots rang out in Dallas, President Kennedy died, and the world changed. What if you could change it back? Stephen King’s heart-stoppingly dramatic new novel is about a man who travels back in time to prevent the JFK assassination—a thousand page tour de force.
Following his massively successful novel Under the Dome, King sweeps readers back in time to another moment—a real life moment—when everything went wrong: the JFK assassination. And he introduces readers to a character who has the power to change the course of history.
Jake Epping is a thirty-five-year-old high school English teacher in Lisbon Falls, Maine, who makes extra money teaching adults in the GED program. He receives an essay from one of the students—a gruesome, harrowing first person story about the night 50 years ago when Harry Dunning’s father came home and killed his mother, his sister, and his brother with a hammer. Harry escaped with a smashed leg, as evidenced by his crooked walk.
Not much later, Jake’s friend Al, who runs the local diner, divulges a secret: his storeroom is a portal to 1958. He enlists Jake on an insane—and insanely possible—mission to try to prevent the Kennedy assassination. So begins Jake’s new life as George Amberson and his new world of Elvis and JFK, of big American cars and sock hops, of a troubled loner named Lee Harvey Oswald and a beautiful high school librarian named Sadie Dunhill, who becomes the love of Jake’s life – a life that transgresses all the normal rules of time.
If you’re now salivating at the chance to dive into this book, then buy your copy from Amazon now, or head down to your local library since they’ll probably have a copy.
The Vanishing Girl (The Vanishing Girl Series) – Laura Thalassa
This book has one of those covers that immediately catches your attention, even if it doesn’t scream ‘time travel’ to you. Fortunately, the plot of this book is as intriguing as the cover. See for yourself in the summary below.
Synopsis: Each night after Ember Pierce falls asleep, she disappears. She can teleport anywhere in the world: London, Paris, her crush’s bedroom, or wherever her dreams lead her. Ten minutes is all she gets, and once time’s up, she returns to her bed. It’s a secret she’s successfully kept for the last five years. But now someone knows.
A week after her eighteenth birthday, when frustratingly handsome Caden Hawthorne kidnaps her, delivers her to the government, and then disappears before her eyes, Ember realizes two things: One, she is not alone. And two, people like her—teleporters—are being used as weapons.
Forced into a quasi-military training camp for teleporters, Ember discovers she has been paired—perhaps for life—with Caden, the boy who got her into this mess in the first place. Now, she has to work with him on a series of teleporting missions, each one riskier than the last. But Caden just might hold the key to Ember’s escape plan, if she can survive her missions without losing her heart…or her life.
This is the first book in a series and right now you can read it on your Kindle – click here to order your copy now.
Einstein’s Secret – Irving Belateche
Books that mix real historical people with time are pretty sweet. And this book does that perfectly. Just reading the summary below gets me all excited for it.
Synopsis: It’s 1955, and Albert Einstein lies in a hospital bed, deathly ill. He suddenly stirs, asks his assistant for paper and pen, then scribbles something down. Minutes later, he dies.
History tells us that Einstein jotted down equations that night. But struggling scholar Jacob Morgan believes that history is wrong. He’s convinced that Einstein wrote a deathbed confession that night–a secret that the great scientist didn’t want to take to his grave.
Jacob has spent his entire adult life obsessively hunting down that secret–with nothing to show for it but the scorn of his colleagues and the tattered remnants of a once-promising teaching career.
But now, thanks to a lucky break, Jacob has a chance to get his life back on track. His appointment as an adjunct professor at the University of Virginia is a fresh start, and he’s vowed to end his pursuit of Einstein’s secret.
Until history chooses this moment to deliver him one more clue. A clue that leads him to an impossible and unbelievable discovery:
And so begins the last leg of Jacob’s desperate quest, one where history is not only changeable–it’s changing. All by itself. And if Jacob doesn’t rescue Einstein’s secret, everything that he’s ever known will disappear forever.
The Last Passenger – Manel Loureiro
I think the editor of this book said it best with, “Nazi cruise-ship time travel. Need I say more?” I mean, really, how crazy awesome does that makes this book sound? Plus, it was originally written in Spanish and I’ve read some really great books by Spanish authors, which gives me high expectations for this one.
Synopsis: Reporter Kate Kilroy accepts an assignment to travel on the Valkyrie, a German ship veiled in secrecy for decades after it was discovered adrift in 1939 with only one passenger aboard, a baby boy named Isaac Feldman.
Obsessed with understanding his origins, Feldman has spent a small fortune restoring the Valkyrie to try to solve the mystery. Assembling a team of experts and sparing no expense, he aims to precisely recreate the circumstances of the Valkyrie’s doomed final voyage. Little does Feldman or his team know that the ship has an agenda of its own. As the Valkyrie begins to weave its deadly web, Kate realizes that she must not only save herself, but the world as she knows it.
Click here to get this book for your Kindle right now from Amazon. And if you understand Spanish, you might want to follow the author on Twitter.
Rewinder – Brett Battles
This is another one of those books that doesn’t really give you much of the feels from the book cover, but it has a really engaging summary that just makes you want to sit down and dive right into it. It’s time travel, but a bit different that most books that tackle it.
Synopsis: You will never read Denny Younger’s name in any history book, will never know what he’s done.
But even if you did, you’d never believe it.
The world as you know it wouldn’t be the same without him.
Denny was born into one of the lowest rungs of society, but his bleak fortunes abruptly change when the mysterious Upjohn Institute recruits him to be a Rewinder, a verifier of personal histories. The job at first sounds like it involves researching old books and records, but Denny soon learns it’s far from it.
A Rewinder’s job is to observe history.
Embracing his new life with enthusiasm, Denny witnesses things he could never even imagine before. But as exciting a life as this is, there are dangers, too. For even the smallest error can have consequences.
Time, after all, is merely a reference point.
Ready to read it? Get a copy in paperback or for your Kindle!