To Say Nothing of the Dog

Last month, I read my first Connie Willis book To Say Nothing of the Dog (first published in 1997) and it instantly became one of my favorite time travel books. To Say Nothing of the Dog is the second book in Willis' Oxford Time Travel series. You are probably wondering why I started with the second book, instead of the first. Well there are two reasons: First the name, which I now know is derived from Jerome K Jerome's Three Men in a Boat (To Say Nothing of the Dog) - commonly referred to today as simply Three Men in a Boat. Then secondly, the description was a combination of everything that I love:

Ned Henry is badly in need of a rest. He’s been shuttling between the 21st century and the 1940s searching for a Victorian atrocity called the bishop’s bird stump. It’s part of a project to restore the famed Coventry Cathedral, destroyed in a Nazi air raid over a hundred years earlier.

But then Verity Kindle, a fellow time traveler, inadvertently brings back something from the past. Now Ned must jump back to the Victorian era to help Verity put things right—not only to save the project but to prevent altering history itself.

Time travel plus Various points from British History - I was sold. Not to mention it has technical conversations and complications of time travel (it's not all as easy at it seems): there is lag, slippage, the rules of time travel - for example can history correct the mistakes you make by messing with the past? To Say Nothing of the Dog is wonderfully written, witty, charming, and did I mention has a bulldog named Cyril who will win your heart? I hope you will pick up this book and give it a chance. I promise you it will not disappoint. I myself plan to read the remaining four books in the series this year, plus who knows I might pick up Three Men in a Boat as well.