- Publisher: Gollancz
- Format: Paperback | 800 pages
- Dimensions: 131mm x 198mm x 36mm | 544g
- Publication date: 12 July 2012
- Publication City/Country: London
- ISBN 10: 0575099321
- ISBN 13: 9780575099326
- Sales rank: 59,939
Traveling back in time, from Oxford circa 2060 into the thick of World War II, was a routine excursion for three British historians eager to study firsthand the heroism and horrors of the Dunkirk evacuation and the London Blitz. But getting marooned in war-torn 1940 England has turned Michael Davies, Merope Ward, and Polly Churchill from temporal tourists into besieged citizens struggling to survive Hitler's devastating onslaught. And now there's more to worry about than just getting back home: The impossibility of altering past events has always been a core belief of time-travel theory - but it may be tragically wrong. When discrepancies in the historical record begin cropping up, it suggests that one or all of the future visitors have somehow changed the past - and, ultimately, the outcome of the war. Award-winning author Connie Willis returns with a stunning, enormously entertaining novel of time travel, war, and the deeds - great and small - of ordinary people who shape history.
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Constance Elaine Trimmer Willis has won, among other awards, ten Hugo Awards and six Nebula Awards for her writing. She lives in Greeley, Colorado with her husband Courtney Willis, a professor of physics at the University of Northern Colorado.
By Orley K. Marron 17 Jul 2012
I read both books - Blackout & All Clear - in sequence, and found myself experiencing a facet of WWII that I had not studied in depth before. The books vividly recreate scenes from people's lives and brave existence in England during the war, combining historical facts and fiction. The main characters - time travellers who find themselves "locked out" from returning to the future - slowly evolve and acquire the characteristics - and bravery - of the "contemps" around them. As less and less information is available, they must contend with worry and uncertainty, identifying with the citizens who have no preknowledge, but must carry on and do the best possible under dire and uncertain circumstances.
The books are moving and gripping, and many scenes are beautiful. Occasionally there are some sections that seem to be unnecessarily long and sometimes characters take actions that seem artificially haphazard and obscure(just to create added complexity and a sense of urgency). But many of the repeated patterns and descriptions give depth and a sense of reality that would not be achieved through simpler depictions .