Jump to ratings and reviews
Rate this book

The Time Keeper

Rate this book
In this fable, the first man on earth to count the hours becomes Father Time.

The inventor of the world's first clock is punished for trying to measure God's greatest gift. He is banished to a cave for centuries and forced to listen to the voices of all who come after him seeking more days, more years. Eventually, with his soul nearly broken, Father Time is granted his freedom, along with a magical hourglass and a mission: a chance to redeem himself by teaching two earthly people the true meaning of time.

He returns to our world - now dominated by the hour-counting he so innocently began - and commences a journey with two unlikely partners: one a teenage girl who is about to give up on life, the other a wealthy old businessman who wants to live forever. To save himself, he must save them both. And stop the world to do so.

224 pages, Hardcover

First published September 4, 2012

Loading interface...
Loading interface...

About the author

Mitch Albom

142 books109k followers
Author, screenwriter, philanthropist, journalist, and broadcaster Mitch Albom is an inspiration around the world. Albom is the author of numerous books of fiction and nonfiction, which have collectively sold more than forty million copies in forty-eight languages worldwide. He has written eight number-one New York Times bestsellers — including Tuesdays with Morrie, the bestselling memoir of all time, which topped the list for four straight years and celebrated its 25th anniversary in 2022. He has also written award-winning TV films, stage plays, screenplays, a nationally syndicated newspaper column, and a musical. He appeared for more than 20 years on ESPN, and was a fixture on The Sports Reporters. Through his work at the Detroit Free Press, he was inducted into both the National Sports Media Association and Michigan Sports halls of fame and was the recipient of the Red Smith Award for lifetime achievement.

Following his bestselling memoir Finding Chika, and Human Touch, a weekly serial written and published online which raised nearly $1 million for pandemic relief, he returned to fiction with The Stranger in the Lifeboat, which debuted at #1 on the New York Times Bestsellers List after being #1 on Amazon. His much-anticipated new novel, set during the Holocaust, is coming in the fall of 2023.

Albom now spends the majority of his time in philanthropic work. Since 2006, he has operated nine charitable programs in southeast Michigan under his SAY Detroit umbrella, including the nation's first medical clinic for homeless children. He also created a dessert shop and popcorn line to fund programs for Detroit’s most underserved citizens. Since 2010, Albom has operated Have Faith Haiti in Port-au-Prince, a home and school to more than 60 children, which he visits every month without exception.

Ratings & Reviews

What do you think?
Rate this book

Friends & Following

Create a free account to discover what your friends think of this book!

Community Reviews

5 stars
35,486 (32%)
4 stars
38,520 (34%)
3 stars
27,051 (24%)
2 stars
7,543 (6%)
1 star
2,137 (1%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 11,243 reviews
Profile Image for Lydia Presley.
1,387 reviews107 followers
September 2, 2012
The Time Keeper by Mitch Albom has been on my excitement list for a while now. Such a great cover, an author I really enjoy, and a story about Father Time - how could I not be excited!

What I expected and what I got were two different things, however. Instead of getting an interesting, complex story about a fantastical creature, I got instead chopped bits of a story, tossed together like a bit of a human salad, and mixed all up.

This story is part Dor, part Victor, and part Sarah, but does not spend enough time with any one of them to make me, as a reader, feel connected to them. I felt a bit of pity for Sarah, was highly annoyed by Victor, and just.. confused by Dor (Father Time). That lack of connection took this book from something that, I was hoping, I would connect to and feel inspired by, to simply a story that, frankly, wasn't really that good.

I think where this went wrong was the way the book was formatted, first of all (bold lettering making a statement before a paragraph about the character). This constantly jarred me and made me realize I was reading a book and kept the characters from fully forming in my imagination. Secondly, Victor and Sarah were just not very likable. Victor, an old, rich man who is dying after a full life, wants to find immortality, and Sarah, a teenager who has just been dumped by her first crush, is suicidal. It wasn't big enough for me, not real enough. Where are the people who have dealt with huge issues and struggling against depression - it's out there: the homeless, the abused. What about those who are working for good and want to continue to live to see that succeed?

I'm disappointed that The Time Keeper didn't work for me. I'm disappointed that I spent all that time (although maybe there's a lesson for me?) anticipating a story that did not live up to its promise. But most of all, I'm sad that I invested my precious time in a story that felt rushed, and unwilling to commit time back to me.
Profile Image for Stephanie *Eff your feelings*.
239 reviews1,234 followers
May 4, 2013
Oh, Dor…..Dor……Dor. You silly man. What possessed you to measure time? You screwed things up for the rest of us. Now we have to BE places at certain times and DO things until the time comes when we are allowed to go home. Why did you do this to humanity? Someone should imprison you in a cave for 6000 years and make you think about what you did, and not let you out until you are truly sorry.

Wait….that is what happened.

Dor was a curious man who lived 6000 years in the past. He wanted to measure things, like the movement of sun the moon and the stars. Back then there was little to do, no xbox, cable television with eleventy hundred channels to choose from, no internet……nothing. So he took up a hobby and discovered time.

One day, the king of the land (a former childhood friend) came to visit Dor to ask him for his help on this tower he was working on. The king thought all of Dor’s gadgets he use to measure time would help bring power to his tower, since he was building it to reach heaven, but Dor refused. He just wasn’t that interested. This did not make the king happy so he exiled Dor.

Dor and his wife, Ali, then went out on the road, leaving their children with some family, and on the way they met some strangers. Dor wasn’t too keen on them but his wife was very social, so they always shared a meal with these folks. Apparent Ali was the touchy, feely type and would hug all these strangers, though Dor warned her not to. Ali contracted a deadly disease and died, Dor was kind of upset.

He stormed off towards the Tower of Babel and climbed the steps, he wanted to have a word with God, he wanted more time with his wife. God responded by sticking him in a cave where he didn’t age a day, didn’t need food, water or sleep for 6000 years. During these years, Dor got to hear all the people bitching about time. One day God decided that it was time to release Father Time (yup), but with homework. Dor was to help two people, yes only two after 6000 years, two very unremarkable and unlikeable people.

Ehh, this was a typical Mitch Album book. You are supposed to learn a lesson from it, like in all his books. In this one you are supposed to learn not to take time for granted, not to rush it, not to wish it away and not to take into your own hands. It was a good book, but it didn’t move me like it was meant to.

It in no way made me think differently about time. Love it, hate it, want more of, or less of it……time is what it is and it doesn’t give a crap about you, it’s going to keep moving forward whether you like it or not.

Also posted at Shelfinflicted
Profile Image for Betty.
402 reviews32 followers
August 11, 2012
Albom's fingers on the keyboard turn out golden prose, whether a column or a book. The Time Keeper is like a combination of precious metal. The story opens with Dor who lives four thousand years ago.

(Edited to add that a person named Sidney who has a private profile complained in a comment 9 months after I wrote this review that I should warn there are spoilers. I don't think this review does, but you can stop reading now if you wish).

back to the review... Albom's explanation of Dor's thought processes in figuring out numbers and time is pure gold.

The silver part of the novel is about a high-school girl named Sarah Lemon. She is lonely and unloved. She has a crush on a classmate Ethan. Sarah is eager for time to pass quickly before their first date. Soon, though, her heart is broken, as happens to unpopular lonely high school girls. Her life is tarnished.

Our platinum character is Victor, the fourteenth richest man. Money, however, cannot cure him when he has terminal kidney cancer. However, he has come up with an alternative use for his money.

Three very different, intertwined characters with different perspectives on Time. Will they meet? How, where, when? How will they influence each other? The answers to these questions are precious gems.

This novel doesn't mention Eccelesiates 3, but it does tell us there is a time for everything: a time to be born, a time to die, a time to .......... I tell you, it is time to read this book!
Profile Image for Tanya.
1,652 reviews
October 16, 2012
In the beginning, I kept falling asleep while reading this book. By the time Dor was compelled to action for his two souls, I was able to push through to the conclusion of the book. I found it satisfying as it reinforces the importance of being in the moment and being grateful for those moments, whether they are good or bad. It reinforces the value of being interdependent with those we love and care about, that we need to be open and honest and fully present for them.

I recommend this to others, but it does feel like you are reading a screenplay initially and it is hard to care about the characters when they are initially presented. It is in their most desperate of acts to manage time for their own purpose that I can relate to them best and feel how they needed one another to move forward to their true destinies.

Quotes I liked:
P 79- "It is never too late or too soon. It is when it is supposed to be."
P 160- "when hope is gone, time is punishment."
P 195- "Time is not something you give back. The very next moment may be an answer to your prayer. To deny that is to deny the most important part of the future."
Profile Image for Liz.
600 reviews504 followers
September 8, 2013
“Knowing something and understanding it were not the same thing.”

A short story before the review.
You know, I have a friend. A very precious one. One, who knows many parts of me better than any other person.
She, more than anyone else, knows how obsessed I am with time. Always was. I am always in time, always counting time and paying attention to it. It can be quite annoying.
She gave me the book and told me to read it, or better ordered me to read it. This friend knew what this book would do to me.
I read it.
It changed some things forever.

This is a story about Father Time. A story about a man named Dor who starts measuring time, something he better shouldn't do.
He is the first one to notice time passing by. He becomes obsessed with time and he loses something. Something very important and after this loss he is banished in a cave.
Alone, not aging, not changing, just hearing.
He hears all the voices who speak about time, over 6000 years.
Eventually, he is granted freedom again with a special hourglass and a unique mission: Teaching two people on earth the true meaning of time.
One who wants more time, more than he is allowed to have.
And one who doesn't want time at all. Who is ready to give everything up, especially the granted time.
“You had many more years,” he said.
“I didn’t want them.”
“But they wanted you. Time is not something you give back. The very next moment may be an answer to
your prayer. To deny that is to deny the most important part of the future.”
“What’s that?”

The write style of this book was very simple, the sentences were kept short and precise, there was nothing complicated about them. Yet, there was something captivating about it. The shortness of the sentences was a strength of this book.
The book showed three different people, with completely different lives.
One who had nothing.
One who had everything.
One who had nobody.

Each character made mistakes. Grave mistakes all of them had to pay for, but they were just normal human beings so their mistakes were just natural. They tried to overpower time and failed at it.

There wasn't something like a real plot in this book. It was more the description of lives. This book showed a certain process without much tension in it. There was neither thrill, nor excitement in this book, but there was understanding and thinking and strength.
This book was deep and it was powerful.

It makes you think about life in general as much as about your own life-style. It makes you reconcider and probably even realize things you didn't before.
I was mesmerized, enchanted, shocked and so much more I cannot name after finishing this book. I just loved it and I know I will come back to this book over and over again...

I highly recommend this book to everyone. Just everyone, without exceptions.
Profile Image for Laurel.
404 reviews193 followers
November 8, 2012
If I were to rate this book, I'd probably give it 2 stars. I feel bad doing that, though, so I'm just leaving it blank. It's not that it's a bad book. It's a nice little fable and has good intentions. Many will no doubt find it comforting and life-affirming. I just found it all a bit too obvious for my taste. Perhaps I'm just not one who feels I need a fable to remind me how precious our time on earth is, or how important it is to try to live in the moment. I'm all too aware of it every day.

Profile Image for Dianne Joy.
37 reviews43 followers
June 15, 2013
That one word that made me lose it and just cry - page 220, last line, last word - "Grace."

Mitch Albom has a way of capturing hearts with every word he writes and how he writes them. This book is not quite like the other books Albom has earlier written, but it is no less good. It is just as great as his earlier works, and I'm currently deciding if maybe, for me, this has been one of his better works.

The Time Keeper is a light read. But it was still full of lessons like a typical Mitch Albom book is - lessons that will keep you thinking, lessons that will fill your thoughts as you lay in bed at night, waiting for sleep to come. After reading an Albom book, I usually feel heavy hearted, sad but inspired. But this one was different. After having read it, I felt light-hearted, inspired just the same, but not sad. Death is a recurring theme in all the Albom books I've read so far, including this one. But The Time Keeper gave a lighter tone to it, which is maybe why I didn't feel heavy hearted when I finished it. The story in general was also lighter as compared to his other books. The characters were a bit more shallow. The conflict was not that deep. But this book is imaginative.I would not have expected Albom to write about Father Time. And I have a feeling that every now and then, when I feel like running out of time, or wishing to stand still in time, or wanting to go back in time, I'll be thinking of him, Father Time.

Needless to say, this book was very well written. The clipped sentences. The sentences in bold letters. The short statements that ended every page,every chapter. I just love it all. Diction. Sentence construction. All of it. It feels all dramatic to me.
I've always been a lover of lines, and I enjoyed all the quotable quotes, and trust Mitch Albom to give a lot of those, that's why love him. He never disappoints.
1 review5 followers
April 6, 2013
For a man so seemingly pre-occupied with how little time we have on Earth and how we tend not to appreciate this amount of time, Albom ironically spends almost no time at all delving into the interiority of his characters beyond the clichéd. Dor is an interesting character on paper, but so little is put into why he has this desire to measure time. The familial and social struggles of Sarah and the devastating childhood of Victor are largely parsed over, so much so that there is little reader investment in the choices that they ultimately make. Unless the novel as a whole is some sort of comment on how our lives move too fast to truly know anyone around us (which seems kind of defeatist and against the point Albom is trying to make in this novel), there simply isn't enough time put in towards developing these characters so that their actions actually have meaning to the reader. It's an interesting concept, but this novel seems like the kind of thing you might pick up at an airport and read on the ensuing flight for a shallow time-killer, and little more.
Profile Image for Phrynne.
3,325 reviews2,145 followers
January 8, 2017
Rather quirky and unusual but still a light read, this is a story about Father Time and the man who discovered time in the first place.
I enjoyed the way it was told in short chapters which circled around three different points of view. There was humour and there was sadness and there was a lot of philosophy about life and death, but it was never deep or hard to understand.
I have not read any of this author's other (more famous) books yet but I certainly will now. This was an ideal book to read on hot Sydney summer Sunday with the air conditioning on full blast! I love days when you just have to stay inside and read:)
Profile Image for Raha.
186 reviews186 followers
November 30, 2017
وقتی خدا روزهای انسان رو محدود می کنه ، یه حکمتی پشتش هست ... اینکه ، هر روزمون ارزشمند و گرانبها باشه
Profile Image for Ali Book World.
348 reviews207 followers
March 23, 2023
قلم میچ البوم رو بسیااااررررر میپسندم!!!!
اما این کتابش خیلی خیلی عجیب بود. فکر میکنم اونطور که باید نفهمیدمش هنور...
باید یکبار دیگه هم بخونمش🥺
خیلی دوستش داشتم.
عمیق، جذاب، پرماجرا و بامعنی 🤝

بعد از "سیم‌های جادویی فرانکی پرستو" این شد دومین اثر مورد علاقه‌ام از میچ البوم😍
رتبه سوم: اولین تماس تلفنی از بهشت
Profile Image for Charlotte May.
720 reviews1,115 followers
August 18, 2017
"Once we began to chime the hour we lost the ability to be satisfied."

3.5 stars!
Now, I love Mitch Albom! But although this one was still fantastic, it didn't hit home in the same way as The Five People You Meet in Heaven or Tuesdays with Morrie
It focuses on a man in the stone age - the first person to discover time - as penance he is forced to forever listen to the outcome of his discovery. That is - the human race constantly asking for more time.
He is sent to save two people on Earth, in order to save himself from his eternal fate. These two souls are an old, ailing man suffering from a terminal illness and a teenage girl wanting to end her life.
Father Time must show them both the meaning of time and what it is to truly live.
A wonderful fable, a quick read.
Profile Image for Mrs. Kenyon.
1,254 reviews25 followers
August 21, 2012
Father Time was once a living man. His name was Dor and he was the first human to measure time. He lived 6,000 years ago when life and time were simpler. After a tragic illness took his wife, Dor wanted to reach the heavens and demand more time. The result of this action was the fall of the Tower of Babel and him being placed in a cave where he had to listen to any mention of time. Sarah is a girl in modern day New York. She wants time to speed up so that she can be with the boy who is showing interest in her. Sarah believes that if Ethan spends time with her, he will see how wonderful she is. Victor is a millionaire in Manhattan. He is dying and wants to cheat death. Victor wants to freeze his body so that it can be healed of its cancer in the future and be given another lifetime to live.

After 6,000 years, Dor is release from his cave and sent to modern times to save these two people. He must learn several lifetimes’ worth of information in order to succeed in this task. He must also determine what he is supposed to do to save them. The Time Keeper will take the reader on a spiritual journey through time. Why is time so important? Do humans spend too much of their precious time thinking about time? This story is told through the eyes of these three different individuals, but the story still flows smoothly as you move through time and locations. Readers of Mitch Albom’s other books with not be disappointed in this novel.
Profile Image for Colleen Fauchelle.
494 reviews63 followers
August 17, 2020
I have always been a clock watcher,wishing time would speed up at school, at work and getting grumpy when people are late.
This is a story about 3 people also wanting to control time to suit them, but of course none of us can do that. The moral is not to give time all the attention but to focus on the moment and enjoy the people you are with, for time flys.
Profile Image for Dale Harcombe.
Author 14 books318 followers
December 15, 2015
This is an entertaining little fable about time and how some people never have enough of it while others wish it would slow down. Dor is one who measures time and ends up in the role of Father Time. The other two main characters are Victor who has cancer and who is running out of time and Sarah who initially wants time to hurry up. Later events cause her to change her mind.
Though it was entertaining and a quick read, this Mitch Albom story didn’t quite involve me the way a couple of his other books have. For someone who wants a light read that just really might cause them to think about time and their own lives this could be a worthwhile read. Sadly, I never connected with any of the characters in a meaningful way. Maybe that was the episodic way the story was told. Or perhaps it was just the theme of this one. It did remind me a little of the work of Jostein Gaader and it was a good change of pace from the book I had read before it. I enjoyed the concept but not so much the way it was written. One of those books, I suspect, you have to be in the right mood for. I will still definitely read others by this author and I am still glad I read this one.
Profile Image for Britany.
991 reviews434 followers
January 4, 2015
3 Lives collide in this tale about Father Time and how time affects all of our lives. Some want it to progress faster, and others want time to slow down. Many take time for granted and don't appreciate the chance that we all have to take a moment and savor these memories.

Dor's life is the main story, as his starts in the times of Babel and ends in present day. He created time and then time stole his life from him. He has a chance for freedom and has to save two lives...

Sarah Lemon, an insecure teen falls in love with a boy who doesn't love her back, and makes her feel terribly about herself. She wants her time to be over. Victor Delmonte is suffering from dialysis and cancer racking his body, he wants time to last forever.

Solid book by Albom, with good life lessons to take away. However, one that never really left the "average" realm for me. Just didn't really connect to any of the characters.
Profile Image for Susana.
489 reviews150 followers
March 19, 2018
(review in English below)

Uma escrita muito básica, quase parecendo dirigida a um público juvenil, sobre um tema supostamente profundo e filosófico mas tratado, quanto a mim, duma forma bastante superficial e previsível.

Uma desilusão, portanto...

A very plain writing, almost as if it were meant for young readers, about a supposedly deep and philosophical subject that was addressed, in my opinion, in a very shallow and predictable way.

A real disappointment...
Profile Image for Abbey.
66 reviews
May 13, 2013
Dor: There is a reason why God limits our days.
Viktor: Why?
Dor: To make each one precious.

Another wonderful and inspiring story from Mitch Albom :)
Profile Image for Lori Henrich.
1,057 reviews71 followers
January 4, 2015
I picked up this book with great anticipation looking forward to turning each page. When I started reading I was frustrated with the style the author chose. I liked his other fiction stories and was expecting to find the same style amongst the pages. Then I found a totally different style and was disappointed. But I decided to keep going and this story is so worth the effort.

The story follows Dor, Victor and Sarah. Dor lived during the early Bible times during the time of the tower of Babel being built. Dor has an obsessive desire to figure out how long it takes for things to happen and invents ways to count and determine time. He winds up in a cave as Father Time where he spends eternity having to listen to people pray for more time. Victor is a wealthy man who is dying from cancer. He faces it the way he does everything else; he wants to find a way to beat death. He doesn't care what his wife thinks and is determined to find a way to live longer. Sarah is a teenager experiencing love for the first time. Her love interest doesn't seem to be as interested in her and makes her live so intolerable that she wants to end it.

Dor arrives on the scene and shows them what comes after they have left this world. He shows them that there is reason God limits our days. To make each one precious. What a wonderful lesson to learn. It is amazing how much time we can waste wishing for more time. Time is precious and we need to take advantage of what we are given.
Profile Image for Carolyn Marie  Castagna.
290 reviews6,226 followers
March 1, 2021
*3.5 stars

A touching story showing how precious time is!
As well as the importance of living your life outside of times constraints. Mitch Albom's books have been longtime favorites of mine, and it was wonderful to return to his beautiful prose!
Profile Image for thewanderingjew.
1,538 reviews18 followers
August 15, 2012
In this advanced copy of Albom’s latest book, he once again takes a simple theme, something we all think about, and he creates an inspirational, extremely creative avenue to explore it. The book is about time and how it affects our lives from moment to moment. We are all, each and every one of us, preoccupied with its measurement. What would life be like without the constraints of time? The book encourages us to think about how simple life would be if we were just enjoying the moment we were in, without thinking of all our other responsibilities in the next moment, the next appointment, the next day, the next problem.
Three children are playing in a carefree manner, running through the fields. They are Nim, Alli and Dor. Dor is consumed with the need to measure, to watch and to investigate how things occur. Alli is a sweet and gentle girl who becomes his wife. Nim likes power and control and he becomes a powerful king who is sometimes a cruel ruler.
Dor creates the forerunner to the sun dial. He is warned not to tamper with measurements by an apparition, but he ignores the warning. Later, when Dor refuses to help Nim build a tower to heaven, so he might defeat the gods and rule from above, Nim banishes him from his kingdom. Leaving his children behind with his parents, he and his wife Alli move away, dejected and lonely, they resettle elsewhere.
When Alli falls gravely ill, Dor runs frantically to the tower that Nim is building, his stairway to heaven, and he climbs it, seeking to reach the top and force the gods to stop time and help his beloved continue to live. When he reaches the top, he is imprisoned in a cave by the same apparition that warned him, years ago, to stop experimenting with his measuring. This apparition is G-d’s representative. He tells Dor he must stay in the cave until heaven neets earth, until he basically learns the error of his ways, until he learns why he should not have inflicted the knowledge of time upon innocent victims. The three main problematic issues concerning the measurement of time seem to be these: wanting to extend time, wanting to slow time and wanting to stop time. Dor wanted to stop time, Sarah wanted to slow time and Victor wanted to extend it. The need to control it is the source of the problem. It is the need for a power that is not in the control of mortal man.
Finally the day comes when heaven meets earth and the apparition reappears. Dor is instructed that he might free himself from the cave if he listens to the unending pleadings of the voices in the pool that was created by his tears, and chooses two to save, two humans who cannot deal with the time they have allotted or the circumstances within which they are living.
Dor hears two voices above all others. Victor, 86, is terminally ill, and wants to find a way to give himself more time, Sarah, 17, is an unhappy, lonely teenager who has deceived herself and is being bullied by social media. She wants to end her time. Dor, himself, wanted to stop time, and the lesson he must learn, from his next trial, is why what he did was wrong.
Using an hourglass and the sands of time, each is led to see the folly of their ways. Each learns that leaving the world, on their own terms, leaves those left behind to suffer. They realize that time is not in their control, should not be controlled and perhaps should not be given so much attention. They discover the drastic consequences of their own behavior and alter their paths. In that way, they also set Dor free and he returns to his own time to be with Alli in her last moments. Although 6 thousand years have passed, he is unaffected by its passage and is able to return to face whatever fate awaits him.
Albom has created a fable about time, about who measured it, about why and how it was measured, and about the consequences for the measurer and those that eventually must live by the tools that measure it. He creates a fantasy about the problems created when we become preoccupied with schedules and the passage of time. He creates the legend of Father Time.
For me, the ultimate message of this little tale is that although we live by time, and we want to control it, we do not own it, we have no power over it and we are helpless in the face of it. Time is the real prison for all of us. We need to live within the moment we have and not worry about the moment we don’t have, the moment that has passed or the moment that is to come. If we try too hard to control everything we do, we are consumed with the effort and lose sight of the actual living and of the enjoyment life provides.
In the end, I was left with some questions. For instance, were the characters symbols of ancient bible characters? Was Nim the pharaoh in Egypt? Was the apparition the son of son G-d? Were Alli and Dor metaphors for Adam and Eve? Was the Mayan calendar the symbol of the end of days for Father Time? Why was Dor’s wish to learn about measurement of time more of a crime than Nim’s wish for power over the people? Weren't both really desirous of the same thing, control? Why was Alli’s act of kindness punished and not rewarded?
Like the other books I have read by Mitch Albom, this book moved me with its simple premise and message.
October 17, 2013
It's Mitch album surely it's good as his other books have been enjoyable. Expecting a great storyline with a depth of meaning and philosophy I found myself becoming increasingly agitated and depressed. Father time starts out as a young curious boy who invents how to read time and marries the love of his life only to have major life changes and ends up in a cave having to listen to people constantly ask for more time in is head. Then we follow a couple of other character storylines.....a young girl with unrequited love and a rich old man dying of cancer..... I have to say I was thinking about the book when I wasn't reading it, and feeling sorry for father time stuck in a cave.....
Halfway through this I wanted to put it down and give up but I persevered. It started to change a little about the 3/4 mark and I thought finally.... But no the journey takes us to a sad place.
It does finish on a positive for some and a negative for others (not to spoil the story should you read it), but I have to say I didn't enjoy it and maybe I missed the whole point but I am happy to swiftly move on and find more useful things for my time
Profile Image for Joy D.
2,068 reviews240 followers
May 9, 2023
The Time Keeper conveys the legend of Father Time. It starts with three children playing in the hills, long ago when time was not measured. One of these children, Dor, becomes obsessed with quantifying time. He pushes his obsession too far and winds up in a predicament, which he can only escape by teaching two people what he failed to learn. Victor is an older person with a disease that will cut his life short. He feels he needs more time. Sarah is a teen who is spurned by her first love and is ostracized on social media. She feels that one more moment of time is too much. The momentum of the book is driven by curiosity as to whether these two will accept what Father Time wants to teach them. It contains a clear message to enjoy life in the moment. It is a short book (240 pages) with a positive message. I think teens, in particular, will relate to Sarah’s story. It is not my usual fare, but I enjoyed it.
Profile Image for Kaitlin.
497 reviews17 followers
January 18, 2013
A waste of a cool idea, and the description is inaccurate. This is bad YA Christian fiction with insufferable characters. It's a 200-page (if you include the 100 white pages) preachy cliche. Tons of references to God's will and God's gifts. The first man to measure time is a "sinner" because...he measured time. Yes, mankind was much better off 6,000 years ago before everyone started thinking and inventing and whatnot.

Other characters include - Victor, the rich finance type who shouts things like "I paid good money for that!"; Sarah, the chubby 17-year-old with daddy issues who thinks like a 6-year-old and hates herself because the cute boy is mean and doesn't love her; Sarah's mom, who is a single mom and is just doing her best but darn it why won't her teenage daughter confide in her?; etc.

The cover of this book is cool, and so is the concept. I was duped. I miss my $7.
Profile Image for Tony.
506 reviews39 followers
September 20, 2018
Absolutely loved this. A beautifully sensitive tale and constructed in such a way that you just don’t want to put it down.

And the moral? Tempus Fugit.

… sometimes.
Profile Image for مُهنا.
175 reviews27 followers
March 12, 2022
A book about hope for a better time.
This book follows 3 main characters and their problem with time. The first wants to learn it, the second wants more of it, and the third wants less.

This book speaks of accepting what we have and making the best of it. And understanding that time is not ours to control or refuse.

The book mentions love shared and warm, love given but not returned, love received and not accepted. It tells of the importance of those around us, the impact we have that we do not notice, the ripples we create with every action or word.
Profile Image for Kelly Kosinski.
262 reviews36 followers
June 23, 2023
Can you imagine being banished to a cave as punishment for inventing the world’s first clock? He is forced to remain there, listening to all the voices crying for more time. All the voices want more days, more years.

He is granted his freedom and given a mission. He must teach two people the true meaning of time.

Wonderful story, uplifting in the end.
Profile Image for Colleen Scidmore.
386 reviews155 followers
October 27, 2021
I have had this book for forever in my TBR pile and I probably wouldn't have gotten around to it anytime soon if it hadn't fit a challenge for one of my groups. I wasn't really excited to start it because tastes change and I wasn't sure what drew me to it to begin with.

I am happy to say I'm glad I got around to this book. It was pretty entertaining.
I didn't think about how important time REALLY is until reading this. We can not live freely on our time table we are always on a schedule with set times to do certain things and planned events. A time to wake up, a ball park time to go to sleep to be refreshed for the next day, etc. So thanks Dor for the chaos that is now life thanks to the invention of time...lol!

My favorite characters were of course Dor and Sarah. Dor was such a good man who really loved his family and especially his wife Alli. And he went through so much because he was inquisitive and wanted to learn how to measure time, it was really heartbreaking. And poor Sarah I just wanted to knock her upside the head at times when she kept thinking there was a relationship with that douchebag Ethan. But she did make one smart decision when it came to him and kudos to her. I also wish with all the pain she was going through she would somehow realize high school is not the end all and there would be other boys. But I remember being that age too and it felt like everything was monumental in the teenage years. Victor I didn't take an immediate liking too but he grew on me...he was a pretty decent guy after all.

This really was an interesting read, I wouldn't call it riveting but I always looked forward to picking it back up when I would have to take a break to do real life things, imagine that! I'm definitely interested in checking out more of Mitch Albom's books especially if The Time Keeper is any indication of his overall writing abilities.
Profile Image for Orsolya.
617 reviews287 followers
October 26, 2012
The first time I read a Mitch Albom book was in my “Sociology of Death and Dying” course during my university days. The above titled course naturally suggests that we read “Tuesdays with Morrie”. Ironically enough, Albom’s latest novel, “The Time Keeper” would have easily blended into the lesson plans of my other elective, “Myths, Symbols, and Rituals” due to the fact that it is a true example of a ‘creation myth’.

If you are expecting a standard, fictional novel, then expect “The Time Keeper” to fall short. However, if you are familiar with Albom’s unique storytelling and successes at imploring philosophy, inspiration, and sometimes even theology while wrapped up in a fictional, fable-like concept; then you are in for a treat.

“The Time Keeper” utilizes the imagery and symbolisms common to creation myths while uniting the lives of Dar (Father Time), Sarah, and Victor. Although each character’s story is somewhat thin, they blanket together to form a thicker depth which causes self-evaluation from the reader. Although not in a standard way, the characters grow and incite reader remorse and emotion.

One of the major highlights of “The Time Keeper” is Albom’s creativity regarding the plot. Although simple and not overly emotionally complex; the mythical elements encourage depth and page turning. In fact, the pace of the novel is a hearty heartbeat which seems to come alive as the story progresses. “The Time Keeper” has many moments filled with inspirational lore, yet they aren’t pushy or melodramatic. Basically, although not realistically conceivable; “The Time Keeper” is still approachable.

The format of “The Time Keeper” may be interpreted as choppy because it bounces between the three central characters but Albom answers all questions with time.

The last ¾ of “The Time Keeper” is somewhat cheesy and not as moving as the former portions of the book. Indeed, one could argue that Albom fashioned a rather predictable ending. Nevertheless, the last two pages caused me to tear up slightly but this was more because of my own projected feelings than due to the story itself (however, since “The Time Keeper” cause my inner experiences to be stirred; it can be congratulated). “The Time Keeper” left me noticing my own feelings towards and of my handling of time which was more than likely Albom’s intent. Plus, on a side note, the novel is a very fast read (one day, at the most) which helps not “waste” time!

“The Time Keeper” is suggested for a creative, quick, and inspirational read. I’m sure my old “Myths” professor is altering her current syllabus as we speak.
Displaying 1 - 30 of 11,243 reviews

Can't find what you're looking for?

Get help and learn more about the design.