Blackout

{4.5/5} “He told me… having two historians in the same temporal and spatial location was too dangerous, which is ridiculous. It isn’t as if we’d run into each other — there were thousands of people in Trafalgar Square on VE-Day. And even if we did, what does he think we’d do? Shout, ‘Oh, my, another time traveler!’ or something?”

Blackout by Connie Willis, published in 2010

In 2060 historians routinely time travel into the past to study history. They do lots of research to prepare, but even so things don’t always go exactly as planned. Especially when Mr. Dunworthy changes everybody’s schedule. When several people go back to World War II they get stuck longer than they expect — and no matter how much you’ve prepared, war is a dangerous place.

This novel is set in the same universe as Doomsday Book and To Say Nothing of the Dog.

I learned some things about World War II. For example, the British put out inflatable rubber tanks in order to fool the Germans flying overhead.

The realism of the details and the wry humour will keep you reading.

The story continues right into the sequel, so you’ll want to have it handy.

I’ve read most of Willis’ novels and a few of her short stories. I previously reviewed her collection Impossible Things.

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