Review: Time After Time
A magical love story, inspired by the legend of a woman who vanished from Grand Central Terminal, sweeps readers from the 1920s to World War II and beyond, in the spirit of The Time Traveler’s Wife and The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.
On a clear December morning in 1937, at the famous gold clock in Grand Central Terminal, Joe Reynolds, a hardworking railroad man from Queens, meets a vibrant young woman who seems mysteriously out of place. Nora Lansing is a Manhattan socialite whose flapper clothing, pearl earrings, and talk of the Roaring Twenties don’t seem to match the bleak mood of Depression-era New York. Captivated by Nora from her first electric touch, Joe despairs when he tries to walk her home and she disappears. Finding her again—and again—will become the focus of his love and his life.
Nora, an aspiring artist and fiercely independent, is shocked to find she’s somehow been trapped, her presence in the terminal governed by rules she cannot fathom. It isn’t until she meets Joe that she begins to understand the effect that time is having on her, and the possible connections to the workings of Grand Central and the solar phenomenon known as Manhattanhenge, when the sun rises or sets between the city’s skyscrapers, aligned perfectly with the streets below.
As thousands of visitors pass under the famous celestial blue ceiling each day, Joe and Nora create a life unlike any they could have imagined. With infinite love in a finite space, they take full advantage of the “Terminal City” within a city, dining at the Oyster Bar, visiting the Whispering Gallery, and making a home at the Biltmore Hotel. But when the construction of another landmark threatens their future, Nora and Joe are forced to test the limits of freedom and love.
Delving into Grand Central Terminal’s rich past, Lisa Grunwald crafts a masterful historical novel about a love affair that defies age, class, place, and even time.
Oh, boy. This story broke my heart. What a beautiful and sweet love story. It tugs at the heartstrings, makes you cry from sadness, groan from frustration and in the end, you just sit there, temporarily incapable of thinking or speaking, taking in the wave of sadness and a surprising sense of completion.
The writing was absolutely perfect - I really felt like I was transported to the 1930-40s and was experiencing the Great Depression and WWII as our beloved characters were. The details and descriptions proved endless research into the time period and it is honestly much appreciated as a reader. This time-travel(ish) romance proved to be a most welcome history lesson, bringing to life people's struggles in two of the most grueling and dark decades of the 20th century. I also had no idea what Manhattanhenge was, but now I just want to take another trip to New York just to witness it for myself.
Joe and Nora. It is so rare for me to absolutely love two characters equally. Usually, I'll feel more of a pull towards one over another. But in the case of Joe and Nora, I just felt love. Pure love. It's hard to describe, but I really did fall in love with both of them and in love with their unique love story. I was rooting for them as soon as they first laid eyes on each other. I felt the pain and confusion Joe felt every time she would vanish. I relished in their happiness and joy upon being reunited and staying together. And I was in awe of their selflessness and sacrifice.
If you're looking for a beautiful love story that will effortlessly transport you to a different time and place, THIS is the book for you.
I received this book through NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.