Book Review: The Outcasts of Time


The Outcasts of Time by Ian Mortimer

Homo homini daemon – man is a devil to man – that is the prevailing theme behind this moving story by historian Ian Mortimer.  The Outcasts of Time opens deep in the heart of that most troubling period in English history, the time of the plagues, where we are introduced to our protagonist during his darkest hours.  In the heat of the moment, John of Wrayment makes a decision that will have significant repercussions for the rest of his life – the last six remaining days he will face on Earth.

Mortimer, known for his Time-Traveler’s Guides to history, once again takes us on a journey through the changing centuries, but this time we have our own personal guide…a beautifully crafted, complex and sympathetic man by the name of John of Wrayment.  Each century is expertly constructed in such rich, heart-rending detail, I often felt as if I too had followed along on John’s pilgrimage.

More than a story, this novel is a lesson in humanity.  What do we do with the bounty we have been given?  How do we help our fellow man?  These are the questions left lingering in my mind after finishing The Outcasts of Time.  Easily one of the best books I’ve read all year.

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