Sunday, January 20, 2013

Book Review: The Time Keeper by Mitch Albom

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BOOK review
Started on: 14.January.2013
Finished on: 17.January.2013

Title : The Time Keeper
Author : Mitch Albom
Publisher : Hyperion
Pages : 224 Pages
Year of Publication : 2012
Price : $ 18.02 (http://www.bookdepository.com)

Rating: 5/5
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"Try to imagine a life without timekeeping.
You probably can't. You know the month, the year, the day of the week. There is a clock on your wall or the dashboard of your car. You have a schedule, a calendar, a time for dinner or a movie. Yet all around you, timekeeping is ignored. Birds are not late. A dog does not check its watch. Deer do not fret over passing birthdays.
Man alone measures time.
Man alone chimes the hour.
And, because of this, man alone suffers a paralyzing fear that no other creature endures:
A fear of time running out."
This story begins with a man named Dor; when long ago, nobody ever take note of time. He is the first person on Earth who started counting, making numbers. Starting from counting his breaths, measuring things, and remembering moments. As he grew older, he started time measurement by measuring water. Dor invented the first clock, but nobody understood what he was doing. But he never expected, that by trying to measure God's greatest gift, Dor would be punished.

It happened when Alli - Dor's wife - is dying because of a disease. Dor then convince his wife that he will stop her suffering, stop everything that's happening. So he climbed the highest tower, trying to do what the gods had not done: trying to stop time. That was when he landed in a dark place: a cave no one knew have existed and no one would ever find. Dor then discovered that he is inside a cave, where he will not age and he have to understand the consequences and suffering of measuring time. For a long time, Dor have to listen to people who suffers because of time: people who needed longer time, who begged for more and more time, and those who pleaded for another day.
"And thus, unknowingly, did Dor begin to serve his sentence - to hear every plea from every soul who desired more of the thing he had first identified, the thing that moved man further from the simple light of existence and deeper into the darkness of his own obsessions.
Time. It seemed to be running too fast for everyone but him."
Dor time has come - after thousands of years - when he have to find two souls on earth: one who wants too much time and one who wants too little - and teach them what he has learned. Dor listened to the voices, and he caught two voices saying: "Another lifetime" and "Make it stop" - two voices that matches what he's looking for. Those two voices, are the voices of an old man who's very rich and successful named Victor Delamonte and the voice of a young teenage girl named Sarah Lemon.
"There was no one to talk to. No one to comfort her. There was blackness and solitude and she was never, ever going back to that school again...
She thought for the first time about killing herself, the when and the how.
She already had the why."
Victor only has a few months left to live because the doctor found a tumor near his liver; but he is not the kind of person who easily accepts defeat. He then asked the research department to help him look for information related to immortality - which led him to cryonics: a method of preserving human body. While Victor wanted to have another lifetime to live, Sarah is practically the opposite. She fell in love with a boy named Ethan - who she thought was interested in her even though she was the unpopular girl at school. When Sarah discovered Ethan's true feelings and was humiliated, she instantly want her life to stop. And so it is Dor's mission to teach them, a lesson that he had to learn in a very long time.
"Do you understand now?" he asked. "With endless time, nothing is special. With no loss or sacrifice, we can't appreciate what we have."
image source: here. edited by me.
I've always been a HUGE fan of Mitch Albom since I read Tuesdays with Morrie about 4 years ago, back when I was still a high school student. His works never fails to impress me so far, and he did it again with The Time Keeper. At first, I was not expecting much out of this book, because some of my friends told me that it's not as good as Albom's other works. But when he's one of my most favorite authors, I never had a thought of neglecting this book without reading it. I don't know if it's my biased judgement, but I love this book as much as his other works - with almost the similar reason: because it has taught me so much. It seems like I could find a good and striking quote every few pages. Even more, it is also because of Mitch Albom's beautiful writing that has made this story so much more memorable for me. He always writes so beautifully and sometimes even sounds poetic, that makes me want to absorb it slowly - word by word - so that I don't miss anything.

The book itself is written back-and-forth in two parts: the story about Dor back when he started measuring time, and the story about Sarah Lemon and Victor Delamonte. Although it may seems confusing in the beginning - especially because each chapter only consist a few short paragraphs, but I still enjoy it nevertheless. I have so many things to love about this book: how there are people like Victor - who is so blinded with money and power that he didn't want to accept death, and decided to cheat on it; and there are also people like Sarah - who feels abandoned, not-loved, and insecure; and decided to end her life. But what I love the most, is how the readers are being taught about something important through these two people: to value the time we had, and understand that the length of time we have in life is not for us to decide.
"You marked the minutes," the old man said. "But did you see them wisely? To be still? To cherish? To be grateful? To lift and be lifted?"
"We all yearn for what we have lost. But sometimes, we forget what we have."
My favorite part of the book, is no-doubt, the ending. The start of the book seems somewhat a bit slow - I even thought this is going to be a kind of mythical story. But reaching the climax point, everything feels a lot more solid. I almost cried when Dor stopped the time for Victor and Sarah, to show them their future and hoped that it would change their decision. As to what future they sees, I will not tell - especially for those who haven't read this book yet, I really don't want to spoil the good part. That end part makes me reflect upon myself; and try to comprehend the fact that we are not alone in this world. Even when we thought this world is evil, but there is almost always hope and people who care for us. Another good thing about this book is that, even in such a short time, we get to know a lot about Victor and Sarah's life - so I can somehow relate to what they're feeling which led them to their decision.

Overall, it is a very very good book for me. Well, seeing the name Mitch Albom on the cover always gives me a good feeling. Once again, his book has taught me many things and I really hope he will soon release another book - because I'm just craving for more! In my opinion, The Time Keeper is the type of book that I have to read slowly and thoroughly - not quickly scanning, because then all the meaning would be lost. Honestly, right now my hands are itching because I want to write all the beautiful quotes I've read in these book - but some might cause spoiler so I decided not to write them, because I hope you will want to read this book. To end this review, here's one of my favorite quotes in the book:
"There is a reason God limits our days."
"Why?"
"To make each one precious."
by.stefaniesugia♥ .

3 comments:

  1. Masalah selera ya Stef.. kalau suka ya suka ajah ^^
    Aku uda ada dua buku MA tapi blm sat pun yg aku baca. Kira2 aku bakalan suka sama MA ga yaaa~

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. iya masalah selera aja sih xD
      ayo coba bacaaa, siapa tau suka :DD

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  2. beautiful~ >.< wah awalnya sih ga tertarik beli, tapi sudah baca review jadi pengen nih. sayang, aku ga ketemu cover yg sama dgn diatas, baru 2 minggu muncul cover 1, diganti sama cover baru yg mnurutku agak dull sih. moga ktmu lagi cover pertamanya (diatas). hehe :D

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