On the Watchtower at Plataea by Garry Kilworth

18586183Source: Own Collection
Format: Hardback
Rating:  4 Stars
Reviewer: Laurel

I read this as part of The Time Traveller’s Almanac, edited by Ann and Jeff VanderMeer.

A very interesting story. Time vortices, opposing time travellers and an engaging view of the siege of Plataea by the Spartans.

The story opens telling us that the group of three time travellers are unable to go further back in time than 429 BC. During the course of the story we find out more about why… though not so much about how they actually time travel. What was interesting is that the team appears to be somewhat incorporeal to the inhabitants of the ‘local’ time, and yet they’re able to handle their own equipment.

The description of the Spartans’ siege of Plataea is vivid as well as amusing – when it comes down to the role the time travellers play as perceived gods. I enjoyed the analysis of the Athenians vs the Spartans – not knowing much about that period of history, it was interesting. But more intriguing was the other group of time travellers from the past (ancient Egypt!) who appeared to have discovered the same mode of time travel, thus creating a standoff between the two time travelling groups. To the disadvantage of those who have travelled back from the future.

I don’t really have much more to say about it. An interesting and somewhat amusing, vividly written story.

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