Lisa Grunwald Time After Time

Last updated date: October 21, 2019

DWYM Score
7.2

Lisa Grunwald Time After Time

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We looked at the top Oprah Book Club Books and dug through the reviews from some of the most popular review sites. Through this analysis, we've determined the best Oprah Book Club Book you should buy.

Overall Take

In our analysis of 131 expert reviews, the Lisa Grunwald Lisa Grunwald Time After Time placed 10th when we looked at the top 10 products in the category. For the full ranking, see below.

Editor's Note November 4, 2019:
Checkout The Best Oprah Book Club Book for a detailed review of all the top oprah book club books.

Expert Summarized Score
6.5
10 expert reviews
User Summarized Score
8.6
183 user reviews
Our Favorite Video Reviews
What experts liked
This is similar to a time travel romance but has different elements. The history is rich, the description so well done reading it made me believe I had watched a movie. I know Joe and Nora well. I understand a appreciate them and will never forget them.
- Good Reads
Grunwald delivers a satisfying supernatural romance about lovers brought together across time.
- Publishers Weekly
The characters come alive and make us want them to stay that way. The ending comes as a satisfying surprise.
- Kirkus Reviews
March 18, 2019 | Full review
My favorite part was finding out about the magic and the mystery. Recommended to women’s fiction and adult romance readers that enjoy magical elements in their stories. I don’t think I will be forgetting this one anytime soon.
- Delighted Reader
June 14, 2019 | Full review
“Here is a glorious novel to savor and return to again and again. I fell in love with Joe and Nora, star-crossed lovers from a time when women wore gloves, men wore hats and a train ticket could change the course of your life. The spectacular Lisa Grunwald has written a classic story of fate, true love, art, and chance with truth and beauty. You will want to share it with every reader you know.”—Adriana Trigiani, bestselling author of Tony’s Wife
- Penguin Random House
June 11, 2019 | Full review
I thoroughly enjoyed the historical aspect of this story and the chance to learn things about Grand Central Station I didn’t know about prior to reading. I also loved the significance of Manhattanhenge, something else that has somehow escaped my knowledge all of these years as well.
- Ashes Books & Blobs
May 17, 2019 | Full review
A love story with a unique twist in that Joe and Nora can't go beyond that terminal. Their love is confined to a place and time. This is a sweet story and a book you just can't put down. Highly recommended!
- Library Thing
Lisa Grunwald’s supernatural novel Time After Time charts Joe and Nora’s time-defying romance as it unfolds under the arches of New York’s Grand Central Terminal.
- Time
May 29, 2019 | Full review
A swoon worthy combination of heartbreak, romance, character study and the indomitable spirit of adventure. Its characters are memorable, their plights inventive, and the romance that centers it all a little bit enviable, a little bit nightmarish.
- All About Romance
June 24, 2019 | Full review
What experts didn't like
Maybe the premise sounded good but wasn't strong enough to carry a well developed storyline or maybe it was poorly executed, but I found the story and its characters boring and lackluster.
- Good Reads
Starts with an interesting premise. Unfortunately, that was pretty much it. I wanted it to be a great book. But it just wasn’t.
- Adventures of a Bibliophile
June 7, 2019 | Full review
The love story at the book’s heart relies too much on magic, and simmering tensions (such as Joe’s controlling nature) remain underdeveloped.
- Publishers Weekly
There were too many time jumps, too many insignificant secondary characters, and an overall disjointed feel that kept this book from being everything I needed it to be. I didn’t feel that connection between the characters in the way that was needed, which left me feeling utterly disappointed.
- Ashes Books & Blobs
May 17, 2019 | Full review
Cool concept, but I just couldn't get into it.
- Library Thing
Has its flaws, and if you think a little too hard about some of the bigger picture problems, the story will fall apart.
- All About Romance
June 24, 2019 | Full review

From The Manufacturer

A magical love story, inspired by the legend of a woman who vanished from Grand Central Terminal, sweeps readers from the 1920s to World War II and beyond. “Readers who enjoyed The Time Traveler’s Wife will be enchanted.”—Publishers Weekly “I utterly loved this clever, charming, hopeful tale of true love against all odds.”—Ariel Lawhon, New York Times bestselling author of I Was Anastasia On a clear December morning in 1937, at the famous gold clock in Grand Central Terminal, Joe Reynolds, a hardworking railroad man from Queens, meets a vibrant young woman who seems mysteriously out of place. Nora Lansing is a Manhattan socialite whose flapper clothing, pearl earrings, and talk of the Roaring Twenties don’t seem to match the bleak mood of Depression-era New York. Captivated by Nora from her first electric touch, Joe despairs when he tries to walk her home and she disappears. Finding her again—and again—will become the focus of his love and his life. Nora, a fiercely independent aspiring artist, is shocked to find she’s somehow been trapped, her presence in the terminal governed by rules she cannot fathom. It isn’t until she meets Joe that she begins to understand the effect that time is having on her, and the possible connections to the workings of Grand Central and the solar phenomenon known as Manhattanhenge, when the sun rises or sets between the city’s skyscrapers, aligned perfectly with the streets below. As thousands of visitors pass under the famous celestial blue ceiling each day, Joe and Nora create a life unlike any they could have imagined. With infinite love in a finite space, they take full advantage of the “Terminal City” within a city, dining at the Oyster Bar, visiting the Whispering Gallery, and making a home at the Biltmore Hotel. But when the construction of another landmark threatens their future, Nora and Joe are forced to test the limits of freedom and love. Delving into Grand Central Terminal’s rich past, Lisa Grunwald crafts a masterful historical novel about a love affair that defies age, class, place, and even time. Advance praise for Time After Time “I’ll never again set foot in Grand Central Terminal without looking over my shoulder for Nora and Joe, or marveling at the station itself—a backdrop as intriguing as the love story that unfolds beneath its star-studded ceiling.”—Georgia Hunter, New York Times bestselling author of We Were the Lucky Ones “Time After Time doesn’t just re-create the lost New York of the 1920s to 1940s, it inhabits it—and so will the reader, in the company of the book’s wonderful characters.”—Daniel Okrent, author of Last Call and The Guarded Gate

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An Overview On Oprah Book Club Books

Reading more books is a common personal goal, but it’s tough to accomplish without some good recommendations. In 1996, Oprah Winfrey decided that it was time to give her viewers some much-needed guidance on their next book choice.

Oprah’s Book Club started off as a new segment in Oprah’s hit daily talk show. She’d choose one book per month (usually a novel) for her viewers to devour and discuss. The segment was a massive hit, and Oprah’s power in the publishing world remains unsurpassed. One expert estimated that a recommendation by Oprah increased a book’s sales by 20 to 100 times the normal rate. 

During the club’s initial 15-year run, Oprah selected 70 books. They ranged from older classics, like Toni Morrison’s “The Bluest Eye” and Leo Tolstoy’s “Anna Karenina,” to indie titles like Breena Clarke’s “River, Cross My Heart” and Tawni O’Dell’s “Back Roads.”

Oprah shuttered her original book club in 2011, but revived it in 2012 as an online version called Oprah’s Book Club 2.0. Even with her long record of excellent recommendations, it might still be tricky to find an amazing book that works for you.

If it’s been a while since you last sat down with a book and you want to get the most for your money, take a hint from Socrates: “To know thyself is the beginning of wisdom.” Your own interests and life experiences will dictate which books you’re drawn to and which ones you set down after the first chapter.

Do you have children who are growing into young adults (or are you reminiscing about your own adolescence)? A coming-of-age tale among Oprah’s picks might be a good fit for your bedside table. Interested in exploring your family’s roots? Look for a novel featuring people with your background set hundreds of years ago. Itching for a story from a powerful writer? Check out the Classics section on Amazon and immerse yourself in a legendary book. 

Of course, writing and reading are meant to build bridges. You’ll miss out if you only select stories that directly relate to your current or past experiences. Look for Oprah’s Book Club selections by authors from a different race, ethnicity or socioeconomic class to expand your horizons. Stories that you couldn’t even imagine experiencing will open your mind and create empathy for a broader, more inclusive look at the world.

Now that you have an overview of what Oprah’s Book Club was all about (plus some general book-choosing guidelines), trek on over to our Tips & Advice for more detailed information.

DWYM Fun Fact

Oprah’s Book Club reignited a love of reading for millions of people. However, things got tense for OBC fans in 2006. Oprah selected James Frey’s “A Million Little Pieces” for her club in September 2005, and readers couldn’t get enough of Frey’s memoir. It was a true account of his life as a drug addict, criminal and jailbird — or so Oprah thought. 

A few months after her stamp of approval (and after his book sold several million copies), critics began questioning Frey’s stories about his time in rehab and jail. As more accusations surfaced, Winfrey brought Frey back on her show in January 2006 and confronted him. After an intense exchange, Frey admitted that he’d lied about his time in jail and was unsure about other large sections of the book. Oprah also confronted Frey’s publisher Nan Talese on air, forcing her to admit that she hadn’t fact-checked Frey’s account. 

Oprah’s audience booed Frey, and she said that she felt “duped” and apologized to her viewers. However, Winfrey made a personal phone call to Frey in 2008 and apologized for the on-air brawl. The bad book blood was put to bed, but viewers never forgot “Frey Day.”

The Oprah Book Club Book Buying Guide

  • Making room in your life for more reading is admirable, but life doesn’t always want to cooperate. Take a realistic look at how much free time you have before you invest in a 500-page novel. It’s better on your psyche (and your wallet) if you choose a shorter book that you actually have time to complete.
  • That being said, a book’s physical length isn’t always the best indicator of how much time you’ll have to devote to reading it. Short books with complex language, difficult vocabulary and challenging themes can take much longer to read than lengthy books with shorter sentences and quicker action. You can get a sense of a book’s difficulty from the free, short samples that Amazon provides for most of its books.
  • A great book combines a riveting plot with deep, well-developed characters, but many stories lean more heavily on one of those components than the other. Books that are more driven by plot usually (but not always) move a little faster as you read them. Books that lean on character development and move forward by drawing you into the fold of a character’s mind might seem a bit slower. Many readers prefer one over the other, but both types of literature become riveting in the hands of a deft author.
  • Oprah’s recommendations are meant for adults, so the language and themes might not be appropriate for younger readers. If you’ve got kids in the house, give them age-appropriate books so you can bond over reading without exposing them to a book they’re not ready for. 
  • To ebook or not to ebook? That’s the eternal question of the digital age. Choosing an Oprah’s Book Club title in ebook form has a lot of benefits. You can tote it around with your entire library of books in one slim e-reader, so it’s much easier to take with you while traveling. It won’t take up tons of space in your home either — that’s a relief for anyone who’s tried to pack and move shelves full of books. You’ll also save some paper by forgoing a traditional book. However, you might want to go for a physical copy if you have a job that requires staring at a screen all day. Your eyes get tired without a break from screens, and you’ll do your vision a favor by reading a paper book. Traditional books also look lovely in your home.