cover image Time Travel: A History

Time Travel: A History

James Gleick, read by Rob Shapiro. Random House Audio, unabridged, 8 CDs, 10 hrs., $40 ISBN 978-0-7352-8588-0

Voice actor Shapiro chooses a conversational style of delivery for the audio edition of Gleick’s mind-bending book on the cultural history of the concept of time and that concept’s evolution in literature and science. Shapiro does an excellent job of relaying this in-depth look at the impossible. Given the complexity of the author’s research, a narrator could easily fall into professorial lecturing or an exhaustive, ear-numbing exposition of complex concepts, but Shapiro, while keeping his pacing steady, uses cadence to help convey Gleick’s complex ideas and manages to make his delivery upbeat and engaging. He mines the material for its humor and gives what he finds just the right smile-inducing spin. His smooth, confident narration makes the audiobook both entertaining and informative. A Pantheon hardcover. (Sept.)