The End of Eternity
By Isaac Asimov
First Published: 1955
Review © 2009 by Stephen Roof
Genre: Science Fiction, Time Travel
The End of Eternity by Isaac Asimov makes for an enjoyable light read about time travel. What’s original about this novel is that time travel has become commonplace but tightly controlled, and a whole organization has been developed to make changes to history in order to benefit mankind. Members of this organization are called “Eternals” who travel between centuries as easily as traveling in an elevator. They are trained to carefully evaluate what changes to history will create the most benefit for mankind as a whole without getting emotionally involved with any individuals that could be affected by the changes.
As a highly trained technician within the Eternals, Andrew Harlan’s life is highly regimented and isolated. Yet somehow, he falls in love. Under this new spell, Harlan completely loses his objectively. The repercussions threaten to change all eternity.
As you might expect from a novel about time travel, there are a few paradoxes. In fact, there are so many paradoxes that it’s impossible to keep track of them all. It’s best to not try to analyze things too closely but rather to sit back and enjoy the ride which has fast pacing and plenty of unexpected twists.The End of Eternity is a much better than average book about time travel but seems to be aimed more towards juveniles than adults, at least in regards to the unrealistic love story. For teens, this novel would be rated as a top pick but for adults, this is only an above average light summer read. However, if you enjoy tales of time travel, you’ll definitely want to pick this up.