43 pages 1 hour read

Blake Crouch


Fiction | Novel | Adult | Published in 2019

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Corruption through Power

From the first time the chair sends Reed back in time, Helena is deeply concerned about how humanity will use its power. Slade repeatedly asks her if she wants to change the world with him, but it isn’t until Helena understands the chair’s true capabilities that she realizes it will fundamentally change the world. Once she realizes this, Helena deeply disagrees with using the chair for any purpose other than seeking to erase alternate timelines and prevent the chair from ever existing. Slade’s backstory seems to confirm that the chair’s power attracts dangerous and corrupt individuals.

John Shaw has a radically different interest in the chair. He wants to use time travel to erase atrocities and make the world a less violent place. Like Slade, however, he fails to grasp how dangerous the chair is until it’s too late. Since John works for a governmental body, higher-ups quickly control his work for political gain, and other countries and terrorist eventually recreate it. Even before this happens, however, Helena notices that some of the people they save from violent attacks suffer mental disturbances after gaining the alternate memories. John’s refusal to accept that the chair is creating harm shows that even in the most well-meaning hands, power corrupts.