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Up the Line

Narrated by: Paul Boehmer
Length: 8 hrs and 59 mins
5 out of 5 stars (2 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Being a Time Courier was one of the best jobs Judson Daniel Elliott III ever had. It was tricky, though, taking group after group of tourists back to the same historic event without meeting yoruself coming or going. Trickier still was avoiding the temptation to become intimately involved with the past and interfere with events to come. The deterrents for any such actions were frighteningly effective. So Judson Daniel Elliott played by the book. Then he met a lusty Greek in Byzantium who showed him how rules were made to be broken... and set him on a family-history-go-round that would change his past and his future forever!

©1969 Robert Silverberg (P)2012 Audible, Inc.

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    2 out of 5 stars
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Profile Image for Alexandra
  • Alexandra
  • 12-07-2014

I love time travel stories, but...

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

Before I start, I want to say that I love time travel stories. And I don't have a problem with graphic sexual descriptions. So what spoilt this one for me? I read a review that said "if one forgives the pure and uncontaminated 1970's male chauvinism". I wasn't sure what that meant and didn't take it too seriously. Now I know - and - sorry - as a woman I can't overlook that aspect. The women just aren't real. They seem to be Silverberg's wildest dream. In fact they are men with female sexual organs. They are described by their desirable physical attributes and their dominant role is as sexual partners. All the men ever seem to want are sex and drugs. I do believe that some young men are dominated and driven by their hormones, but even they must have other characteristics. So in short: all the characters retain a plastic unreal feel to them and don't come alive. After a while I found all the casual sex that was going on more irritating than anything. And to female readers: It doesn't read/sound erotic to a woman! It's more like "So I followed her upstairs and we sexed." Or "She expressed her wish to be had and so we got it on..."In between all that there does seem to be a story that might be worth listening to, but after 2 hours I just didn't want to get through all the nonsense any more.To answer the lead question: I need characters that come alive.

Would you ever listen to anything by Robert Silverberg again?

no

Did the narration match the pace of the story?

yes

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

disappointment

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Colin Engstrom
  • Colin Engstrom
  • 29-03-2017

Wow, I don't mind erotica but this is really dirty

What disappointed you about Up the Line?

The story failed to grasp me and the plot was really just a persons sex venture through history to have sex with an ancestor.

What do you think your next listen will be?

Anything with less creepy sex.

Did Paul Boehmer do a good job differentiating all the characters? How?

The overall narration was meh.

You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

Possibly was so bored I did not want to finish it.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Simone
  • Simone
  • 09-01-2015

Ugh, I need a shower!

I love Time Travel Stories. The more paradoxes the better; this book had tons and I loved it!

What I didn’t love was all the sex. Perhaps if I was a 17 year old boy this book would have “done it for me” but as it is, it was just overthetop stupid.

Ok so in the future we are sexually liberated... got it. But can we just take the author’s word for it and move on with the story? No! instead we must slog through all his fantasies. Ugh, it was so geared towards boys with pimples. (Also, there were a lot of objectionable sexual references to children which just disgusted me).

It’s all so frustrating because it just took up space in what was otherwise a great fun time travel adventure.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Jim "The Impatient"
  • Jim "The Impatient"
  • 01-09-2014

Sex and Drugs, No Rock and Roll

YOU THINK I'M AN ORDINARY FOOL OR A GOD DAMN FOOL.
As a big fan of Downward To Earth, The World Inside, At Winter's End, Sorcery of Majipoor, Starborne and House of Bones, I was wondering why more of Silverberg's writings were not available in audible. I am finding out cause the rest of his writings are not so good. This was written in 1969 and is full of hippie sex and hippie judgment. Talk about gays and blacks and such just thrown in to make the writer sound cool. RS is a big historian who loves to include Constantinople in a lot of his stories. Having lived through the sixties with free love, no bras and mini-skirts, I can see how some writers would think the future would be full of naked people having casual sex. RS forgets that all things are cyclical. I was also surprised that RS seems to call Poul Anderson a bigot. Anyways the story sucks.

14 of 21 people found this review helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
Profile Image for Michael G Kurilla
  • Michael G Kurilla
  • 10-01-2019

Time travel as a profession

Robert Silverberg's Up the Line is a time travel story from the 1960's. A slacker 20-something disillusioned with his work decides to take advantage of his college history courses and takes a job as a tour guide taking people back in time to witness the significant historical events related to present day Istanbul (Constantinople, the Byzantine empire, the crusades, etc.). Along the way, he meets several colleagues running side operations while trying to stay away from the time patrol. He also takes an interest in researching his ancestors, but finally runs into a determined tourist who goes off on his own and must pull out all the stops to reset history straight.

While the history outlined is engaging and compelling, Silverberg spends much of the time discussing all the inherent paradoxes that result with time travel and then goes to great lengths to detail caveats that make for a consistent set of operating conditions. Given the time period the story was written there is much attention to sex and sexual proclivities with the general assumption that promiscuity was a social convention unique and specific to the time period in which the tale was written.

The narration is well done with an excellent range of voices. Pacing and tone are aligned with the overall plot.