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Which is it, Mr Crichton?

Ok, I usually just sit back and enjoy books, but something in Michael Crichton’s “Timeline” has just bugged me: the “time travel” actually isn’t; it’s travel between universes, which – being infinite – exist at all possible times, thus it’s like time travel.

Ok. Fine. However…

The professor travelled “back” to one of these other universes and got stuck. He wrote a note, which was found in the present time … in the original universe.

So it is time travel, not multiverse travel then? But you explained that time travel was impossible. Which is it, Mr Crichton?

Oh hell … now they’re preparing to go back in time. They can take little aluminium canisters of sleeping gas, but can’t take a lighter because it’s “Not correct for the period. You can’t take plastic back there.”

So plastic’s out, because not period, but aluminium canisters are fine. Again, which is it, Mr Crichton?

And oh my! What a terrible analogy to explain away time paradoxes.

I want to like the book; I recall liking it years ago. However, it’s simply not drawing me in. It’s not *badly* written (like the Star Wars novel I abandoned partially-read last year, but it’s really not that engaging.

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