How to Stop Time

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"The first rule is that you don't fall in love, ' he said... 'There are other rules too, but that is the main one. No falling in love. No staying in love. No daydreaming of love. If you stick to this you will just about be okay.'" 

A love story across the ages - and for the ages - about a man lost in time, the woman who could save him, and the lifetimes it can take to learn how to live

Tom Hazard has a dangerous secret. He may look like an ordinary 41-year-old, but owing to a rare condition, he's been alive for centuries. Tom has lived history--performing with Shakespeare, exploring the high seas with Captain Cook, and sharing cocktails with Fitzgerald. Now, he just wants an ordinary life.

So Tom moves back to London, his old home, to become a high school history teacher--the perfect job for someone who has witnessed the city's history first hand. Better yet, a captivating French teacher at his school seems fascinated by him. But the Albatross Society, the secretive group which protects people like Tom, has one rule: never fall in love. As painful memories of his past and the erratic behavior of the Society's watchful leader threaten to derail his new life and romance, the one thing he can't have just happens to be the one thing that might save him. Tom will have to decide once and for all whether to remain stuck in the past, or finally begin living in the present.

How to Stop Time is a bighearted, wildly original novel about losing and finding yourself, the inevitability of change, and how with enough time to learn, we just might find happiness.



My Review:


5 timeless stars

...this ended so lovely..

Timeless, elegant, exquisite, thoughtful and a sweet surrender. This was one of my favorite reads of the year thus far.

Tom has lived a long time. A really long time. He does not age at the same rate as regular 'mayflies'…normal mortal humans. He is not immortal, but every human year equals and affords him many more than normal. When others are turning grey, he not so much shows but the earliest sprouts of plume to shave. Soon, he outlasts his friends and family. He is seen as the witch’s son and has to flee from one place to another. The world is not ready for a human like him. He has to keep secrets wherever he goes.

This is a blessing and a curse. Born in the sixteen hundreds’, he has traveled on Captain Cooks ship, played Shakespeare on stage, lived in wars, seen cities rebuild, lost his wife and his daughter, lived in solitude or hid and quite amazingly has gone through all the stages of human emotions and transformations these experiences afforded him. This has also made him tired. Tired of humans not learning from mistakes. Tired of events in time repeating themselves.

Told in first person narrative, he is telling his story injected with flashbacks of those times above for the reader to grasp the scope of his experiences. How he became, what he has seen, and that of a loss he is desperate to uncover. And that is where he is at now.

The Albatross Society is there to protect people like him. Yes, there are others. Tom has met the leader of the society several times. He has guided Tom’s life and provided him with opportunities to go places every 8 years to start new and switch up his circumstances. Tom is getting a bit weary with this life and all he wants is to be ordinary, with a job and live quietly while uncovering the loss of someone dear to him. The society has made promises to aid in this endeavor for years, but it just doesn’t come to fruit. In the meanwhile, Tom’s ordinary life takes a turn of events he tries desperately not to fall for…. Love. The one thing he is never supposed to feel or have.

"The first rule is that you don't fall in love, ' he said... 'There are other rules too, but that is the main one. No falling in love. No staying in love. No daydreaming of love. If you stick to this you will just about be okay.'"

So, what is he supposed to do? The conclusion is a sweet surrender that even mayflies have come to grips with…..Time.


This was written so insightful of the different facets to life. The lifetime of humans, the growth and changes that take place with age, the struggles and joys of the different phases we enter during our life time, as well as the patterns in history for the last couple hundred years.

I enjoyed this for its’ calmness, the reflections and the quotes or ideas pondered in the novel. This may be the perfect read for me, as I am middle aged, and have experienced loss and joys and a few phases of life, but also because I love history. And I know, by no account is this a flawless historical work of art, nor does it serve as a scholarly tool, but I enjoyed living in the moments with the character during his telling of the different time periods. It was vivid, the backgrounds were researched and well executed into the story line and I savored the experiences. It culminates to the sweet surrender of life and time itself.

This is not a fast paced, action packed read. But if you like something lasting for your palette and your heart, move this book up onto your tbr pile. It is lovely and divine 😊