Book Review: How To Stop Time by Matt Haig

Finally, another book review. Sorry it’s been a bit quiet on my end – lots of isolating to do and I’ve been kinda busy. But I had the time to read this, which I’ve been excited about for a while.

I first heard of Matt Haig on Twitter, and when I did, I couldn’t stop hearing about him it seemed. He speaks openly and loudly about his issues with mental health and he’s sort of a pillar in the community. Also, friends were recommending his books left and right so I was happy to finally get around to reading it.

The plot probably sounds familiar: How To Stop Time is about a man who doesn’t age. Or, doesn’t seem to at least. The thing is, he ages a lot slower than the rest of us, and when we meet him it turns out he’s been alive for hundreds of years.

You can imagine the plot that develops from there, and it’s sort of a mix between a contemporary mystery and historical fiction as we look back at our protagonists former life (or should I say lives) as he tries to find his footing in the now. It’s very fascinating, and the way Haig writes about it makes it doubly so. He seems to have done his research when it comes to the historical aspects and it’s a gripping and simultaneously very interesting book.

I loved almost all of it.

Without spoiling more of the plot, what really didn’t do it for me was the ending. In one sense, it didn’t feel like there was one. The whole book just crumbled and collapsed when Haig tried to tie up the loose ends. Maybe it was just me who saw it going another way, maybe I was just expecting more, but I was really disappointed at the way it turned out.

To me, it was like Haig at done all this research, set up this historically fascinating and relevant world only to tear it a way in a few lines. And not in a satisfactory way either.

Now that I look back, maybe I started with the wrong Haig book. I don’t doubt that I’ll enjoy his other works, because after all, this is really well written, but I hope he has managed to end his other stories differently.

Would I still recommend this book? Definitely. It’s really gripping for the most of it. Hopefully you’ll have a better experience than me.

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