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Cover of Time Travelers Are Schizophrenic

Amazon review: Mind warping and thoughtful, May 30, 2019

Rating: 5.0 out of 5 stars

Youíre in for quite a ride in Dr. A.R. Davisí Time Travelers are Schizophrenic. A Martian genealogist finds himself trapped between the cosmic forces of the past and the future as he tries to protect reality from an evil entity. Davis always has great plots with depth and manages to present them in a way thatís easy to understand but also makes you think. Iím looking forward to seeing where else The Family of Man series can take me that it hasnít already gone yet! Joshua Grant, diabolicshrimp.com

Goodreads review: October 13, 2011

Rating: 3.0 out of 5 stars

It's funny how this book ended up on my TBR stack...it fell on my foot. Yep. Weird things happen to me in libraries, but this one's a doozie.

I was hustling through the "New Arrivals" section of the Rockville Centre library, not pausing to look at the pretties because you can only have the new ones for two weeks and I already had six at home unread. There were two more books in my arms. I was looking towards the check-out line to determine which circulation lady was moving fastest when OWWW my right foot (the one whose great to is lost to gout) has a sharp pain!

I looked down in some surprise since I was in the main aisle, not near shelves or magazine racks, so not expecting to have stubbed my toe on something. It wasn't stubbed. Time Travelers Are Schizophrenic was ON TOP of my sneaker.

From whence it fell, I do not know. I don't shuffle my feet, so it wasn't scooped up by foot motion from the carpeting. It just...appeared...painfully...on my foot.

Not being a complete idiot, I picked it off the shoe and checked it out. I then read it. And, as is my requirement, re-read it so I could write a fair review of it.

It's a self-published novel, and I can see why. This type of space opera meets time travel book isn't an easy sell to publishers of SF, and add in a healthy dose of end-of-the-world action plus a romance and I can hear the editors at Ace and Tor limbering up their "reject" stamps.

Too bad for them, and for us. This is a good story, told by a fair writer, and possessed of a solid, expandable premise. It needs editorial guidance to expand certain characters's narrative purposes (Shamel and Krizel suffer from severe underutilization), and to avoid certain first-timer errors, like the telling of the plot versus the showing of the action (the Fishmen are quite glancingly reported too often).

But. (Isn't there always a "but" in my reviews?) The idea of a world altered out of all imagining by cheap, abundant, non-polluting power, and inhabited by a new, small minority of humans with true mental multi-tasking capabilities born right into them, and humanity in its billions living on the Moon and Mars...this is good stuff, albeit not brand-spankin' new. Our hero is an artist, nicknamed "Siv," whose eighty-year life is equivalent to our, say, forty. He creates "emoti-sims" which are entertainment vehicles much like our movies. He chooses weird, off-kilter subjects, following his muse...but he is, in fact, trying to piece together the story behind makind's mutant multi-mind capability, which he has in spades.

It's his search, and the strange alleys it takes him down, that give the book its title. Siv is a time traveler...he re-creates for emoti-sim eternity the moments that, in retrospect, are the crucial ones to the mutation's appearance.

I won't go into more details, but I will say that Dr. Davis has made this a very easy book to like, and one I think a lot of SF fans would accept. But I fear it won't happen, as self-publishing is still a ghettoizing stigma on a book.

Be a devil...buy this book, and like it or loathe it, donate it to your local library after you read it. Let freedom from corporate publishing ring! Why not? By Richard Derus