I would like to thank Blake Brooks at Head of Zeus for sending me a copy of The Psychology of Time Travel by Kate Mascarenhas in return for an honest review. I’ll be sharing my review later in this blog post but first I am genuinely thrilled and delighted to welcome Kate Mascarenhas to Linda’s Book Bag to tell me all about the book.
Published by Head of Zeus today, 9th August 2018, The Psychology of Time Travel is available for purchase through these links.
The Psychology of Time Travel
: Four female scientists invent a time travel machine. They are on the cusp of fame: the pioneers who opened the world to new possibilities. But then one of them suffers a breakdown and puts the whole project in peril…
: Ruby knows her beloved Granny Bee was a pioneer, but they never talk about the past. Though time travel is now big business, Bee has never been part of it. Then they receive a message from the future – a newspaper clipping reporting the mysterious death of an elderly lady…
: When Odette discovered the body she went into shock. Blood everywhere, bullet wounds, that strong reek of sulpher. But when the inquest fails to find any answers, she is frustrated. Who is this dead woman that haunts her dreams? And why is everyone determined to cover up her murder?
Staying in with Kate Mascarenhas
Welcome to Linda’s Book Bag, Kate. Thank you for agreeing to stay in with me and tell me about The Psychology of Time Travel.
It’s lovely to be here Linda.
Firstly, can you tell me a little bit about The Psychology of Time Travel please?
The Psychology of Time Travel is my first book deal and I’m so looking forward to it being out in the world. It’s on sale from 9 August.
(That’s today. Happy publication day Kate and huge congratulations.)
It took around two years to write and stemmed from me wondering what kind of emotional adjustments time travel might involve. My professional background is in psychology and, like Barbara in the book, I have a diagnosis of bipolar disorder.
(I can see that your own background has impacted enormously on the book. I found it fascinating and will share my review in a few minutes.)
What can blog readers expect from an evening in with The Psychology of Time Travel?
It’s a time travel murder mystery that spans the nineteen sixties to the present day. You’ll be in the company of pioneering female scientists and time-hopping sleuths, in a layered, Inception-like plot.
(We certainly will!)
What else have you brought along and why?
Grace, one of the time travellers in the book, enjoys a shot of Genever – which is the Dutch variety of gin. And to eat, maybe freeze dried ice-cream, as that’s available to buy in the time travellers’ headquarters.
For added atmosphere some sixties music might be appropriate. Grace has The Velvet Underground & Nico on vinyl, so we could give that a spin
That sounds like a plan to me Kate. Whilst I get the music on, you might like to read my review of The Psychology of Time Travel. Thanks so much for staying in with me and telling me more about it. Enjoy your publication day!
My Review of The Psychology of Time Travel
Time travel will be at the centre of a mystery death that spans decades.
Goodness me. The Psychology of Time Travel is a remarkable book. It wasn’t always an easy read because of the time frames and number of characters who might be within those time frames and I think it’s so much the better for challenging the reader. Kate Mascarenhas made me question my own morals and questioned my intelligence and thinking so that I was utterly absorbed in, and occasionally disturbed by, reading The Psychology of Time Travel.
This is such an intelligent and compelling read. It felt akin to being part of an orrery where aspects are forever shifting but are all interconnected. I was constantly having to shift my position and assessments about the narrative. I loved the way The Psychology of Time Travel totally ensnares the reader. Kate Mascarenhas weaves thought provoking philosophical questions throughout the story so that I had to consider how I might feel and behave if I were able to travel through time.
The characters are varied and wide ranging as they explore different versions of themselves in time, different sexualities and moralities. I thought Margaret was truly awful and they way she underpins the action is a stroke of genius. She’s a true example of absolute power corrupting absolutely and in many ways The Psychology of Time Travel is a perfect analogy of much of today’s world. I felt I wanted to join the Conclave myself to challenge Margaret face to face.
The magnificent plot is a stunning creation. Kate Mascarenhas uses popular culture, like music, to anchor each time frame really clearly so that each era is very realistic. I usually find novels with multiple time frames quite irritating but this story held my attention without wavering so that I wanted to know what would happen next, particularly to Ruby and Odette.
The most fascinating aspect of The Psychology of Time Travel for me, however, is the exquisite way in which themes are handled. It is perfectly possible to read the book on one level as an exciting murder whodunit across time, but there is so much more to it than that. Kate Mascarenhas mirrors society’s prejudices about lesbianism, mental health, race, science and politics in frequently disturbing ways. Even with the allowances of the 1960s and 1970s some of the views and attitudes felt uncomfortably only too familiar – and wrong, so that the author exposes the appalling attitudes those outside the rules and conventions often face. Barbara’s treatment by the Conclave and Margaret in particular is only one example.
The Psychology of Time Travel is a book that I think might just polarise readers. I found it complex, exciting and intriguing and I really enjoyed it.
About Kate Mascarenhas
Kate Mascarenhas is a part-Irish, part-Seychellois midlander. Since 2017, Kate has been a chartered psychologist. Before that she worked as a copywriter, a dolls’ house maker, and a bookbinder. She lives with her husband in a small terraced house which she is slowly filling with Sindy dolls. This is her first novel.
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