Skip to main content

The Key to Happiness by Gwyn Cready



I've been reading The Mammoth Book of Time Travel Romance (2009) and The Mammoth Book of Irish Romance (2010) recently. Surprisingly, I liked the time travel anthology much, much better than the Irish romance anthology. There are only a couple entries from the time travel book that I didn't appreciate at all, and almost the exact opposite for the Irish stories. Pretty surprising since many of my favorite authors' books are set in Ireland.

Anyway, over the next couple of weeks, I plan to write postings on some of the short stories from those two collections.

I really enjoyed Gwyn Cready's The Key to Happiness. A man goes back in time to stop the woman he loves, an unrequited passion, from making a life-altering decision. She'll have the appearance of every happiness for years, but then one action causes everything to crumble around her, destroying the essence of who she is and leading to complete misery.

There are rules to his time travel episode. He can't talk to his young self in order to influence his past actions (or lack of action) or he'll immediately disappear, and, even if he limits himself to speaking with her, she won't be able to remember what his older self tells her after he eventually leaves the scene of the past.

Will he be able to influence her decision when she won't consciously remember their conversation? And will he be rewarded in some way for his selfless act to aid the woman he loves?

I found the concept original, intriguing, and perfect for the short story format. I definitely didn't feel the need to read a book-long version of the story.

Best of all, I haven't read anything by Cready before, so I've found a new-to-me author to enjoy. Read more about the author at her site here.

My overall personal rating of The Key to Happiness from The Mammoth Book of Time Travel is a B+.

Comments

Hagelrat said…
well I can certainly appreciate the cover.
StephanieD said…
I just read a time travel love story, The Kingdom of Ohio- wonderful and heartbreaking!
Nice review. sorry you didn't like the irish set as much. time travel sounds really cool though.

lauren
Hagelrat--The cover was what caught my eye since Barnes & Noble had the cover facing out on the shelf. Not a bad-looking fellow, huh?

StephanieD--I'll have to check into The Kingdom of Ohio because I do enjoy time travel.

Shooting Stars Mag--I bought the Irish set after liking the time travel one so well, so that doubled my disappointment, I think.
Keli said…
I was so looking forward to reading this as I love Time Travel Books, but then you said short stories and I just can't get into short stories. By the time they get together, the story is over!

Popular posts from this blog

If Nobody Speaks of Remarkable Things by Jon McGregor

The May selection for my work book club is Jon McGregor's If Nobody Speaks of Remarkable Things (2002). The novel follows various individuals in one neighborhood on a particular day, an ordinary day that ends with a terrible tragedy.

Here's the short set of questions I e-mailed to book club members yesterday, along with my own responses.

Did you have a favorite character, or one that spoke to you the most? Who and why?
The father with the burned hands is the one who stayed with me the most after reading the book.

Did you notice that the day on which the events unfold is actually the same day that Diana, Princess of Wales, died? Does knowing that make any difference in how you see the story? I wouldn't have made the connection if I hadn't just watched some of the coverage of the Royal Wedding. To quote the author, he chose this particular day because his novel is about how ". . .everyday miracles of life and death go unwitnessed in favor of celebrity and sensati…

Current Little Pleasures

Girls' weekend in Omaha with Maya and her friend.

Happy Buddha:  Sweet Orange and Cedar Shower Foam from RITUALS

Time for iced or blended peppermint mochas.

Shopping for little gifts for Maya's Japanese pen pal.  They were matched through their schools, and we're hoping she can stay with us for a few days this summer.

The flock of wild turkeys, foxes, and other assorted wildlife entertaining us this fall.

Thanksgiving plans to visit my sister.

Hallmark Channel's Countdown to Christmas is back!

Current Little Pleasures

Christmas Keepsake Week, July 14-23, filled with Christmas movies on the Hallmark Channel.

Sending Christmas (in July) cards with a Peace greeting to some of my favorite people.  Why not??

Scott Tube Free Toilet Paper--nothing to recycle.

Haagen-Dazs Coffee Ice Cream--always!

Baby Driver movie.

Seeing photos from my sisters and niece on Facebook during their Italy trip.  I can't imagine they will want to come back home!

What are your current little pleasures?