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Debra Hamel is the mother of two preternaturally attractive girls and the author of a number of books about ancient Greece. She writes and blogs from her subterranean lair in North Haven, CT. Read more.


Books by Debra Hamel:

THE BATTLE OF ARGINUSAE :
VICTORY AT SEA AND ITS TRAGIC AFTERMATH IN THE FINAL YEARS OF THE PELOPONNESIAN WAR
By Debra Hamel


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KILLING ERATOSTHENES:
A TRUE CRIME STORY
FROM ANCIENT ATHENS
By Debra Hamel


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READING HERODOTUS:
A GUIDED TOUR THROUGH THE WILD BOARS, DANCING SUITORS, AND CRAZY TYRANTS OF THE HISTORY
By Debra Hamel


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THE MUTILATION OF THE HERMS:
UNPACKING AN ANCIENT MYSTERY
By Debra Hamel


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TRYING NEAIRA:
THE TRUE STORY OF A COURTESAN'S SCANDALOUS LIFE IN ANCIENT GREECE
By Debra Hamel


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SOCRATES AT WAR:
THE MILITARY HEROICS OF AN ICONIC INTELLECTUAL
By Debra Hamel


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ANCIENT GREEKS IN DRAG:
THE LIBERATION OF THEBES AND OTHER ACTS OF HEROIC TRANSVESTISM
By Debra Hamel


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IT WAS A DARK AND STORMY TWEET:
FIVE HUNDRED 1ST LINES IN 140 CHARACTERS OR LESS
By Debra Hamel


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PRISONERS OF THE PELOPONNESIAN WAR
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Delacorte, Peter: Time on My Hands

  Amazon  

4.5 stars

Travel writer Gabriel Prince, the protagonist of Peter Delacorte's Time on My Hands, spends a dreary afternoon in 1994 in Paris's Musée des Techniques. He encounters there the eccentric, 72-year-old Jasper Hudnut, formerly an academic physicist, who is intrigued by a jet-ski-looking machine he finds stashed in the museum's basement. Though Prince is a trifle unnerved by the occasional, near maniacal intensity of Hudnut's gaze, he accompanies his new acquaintance to a nearby cafe, where the conversation turns quickly to politics--specifically to Ronald Reagan's presidency in the 1980s. Hudnut would prefer a world in which Reagan had never been elected. But unlike your average embittered liberal, content to complain about Reagan's ascendancy, Hudnut means to prevent it.

So begins Delacorte's delightful time travel novel, which is at least as likeable as Jack Finney's classic Time and Again--even for readers who do not share Hudnut's political views. Told in the first person, the book is Prince's account of his journey, at Hudnut's urging, to 1938 Hollywood, where the likes of Humphrey Bogart and Errol Flynn, not to mention B movie star "Dutch" Reagan, can regularly be spotted in the Warner Brothers commissary. But changing history is not as easy as it looks. Sometimes you don't get it right on the first try. Delacorte's plot becomes deliciously complicated as Prince attempts repeatedly to manipulate events to his satisfaction. The ending of Time on My Hands will leave you pondering the book's twists, and hoping that Delacorte means it when he says he'd like to write a sequel.

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