Top Ten: Dual Timeline Fiction

Top Ten Dual Timeline Fiction

Dual timeline narratives encompass the past and the present, time periods that are both physically and historically distant. But when the timelines meet and connect, they reveal shocking truths, family secrets, deceit and lies, only to show that the past and the present aren't as far apart as they seems. If you like twists and mysteries, and revel in uncovering secrets revealed by the dance between timelines that intertwine and keep you hooked till the end, take a look at our top ten narratives with dual timelines that we have here at the Ōamaru Library.


The Lake House by Kate Morton 
(Adult Fiction, MOR)

70 years after a mysterious and tragic family loss, successful writer Alice Edwane is still haunted by the disappearance of her baby brother at her family's idyllic Cornwell estate. Meanwhile, young detective Sadie Sparrow stumbles across an abandoned lake house while out on her morning run. Both women, from decades apart, are brought together by their suspicions and eagerness to solve a family secret, only to reveal shocking truths about a past long ago...yet more present than ever.


Outlander Series by Diana Gabaldon
(Adult Fiction, GAB)

In 1945, former combat nurse Claire Randall settles for her post war life. While on her second honeymoon to Scotland, Claire is hurled back in time to 1743. Trapped in the same land but what feels like a completely different world, Claire falls for a young warrior and runs from her husband's  ancestor. Torn between fidelity and desire, Claire is unsure if her life back in 1945 is looking for a way to find her, or if she should find a way to return to it.


Furyborn by Claire Legrand
(Young Adult Fiction, LEG)

Centuries seperate two women, both connected by fate, and their power to save the world. Rielle Dardenne risks everything to save her best friend, but exposes herself as one of a pair of porphesied queens. One thousand years late, Queen Rielle is a fairytale to bounty hunter Eliana Ferracora. But when her mother mysteriously vanishes, Eliana joins forces with a rebel captain, only to find a great evil at the heart of the Empire. As their stories intersect, shocking connections are revealed, and ultimately determine the fate of their worlds - and each other.


The Paris Library by Janet Skeslin Charles
(Adult Fiction Rental, CHA)

Based on a true World War II story, The Paris Library follows the story of American Librarian, Odile Souchet living in Nazi occupied Paris and her heroic actions to save her beloved library from destruction. 40 years late, a lonely teenager Lily befriends her elderly neighbour, uncovering her mysterious past and a dark secret that connects them. Both timelines intertwine and come to meet, to reveal how consequences from past decisions and choices can make us who we are.


Love and Other Words by Christina Lauren
(Adult Fiction, LAU)

A tale of love, loss, friendship and betrayals, told in alternating timelines between Then and Now. Once best friends, Macy and Elliot are now strangers as adults. As their teenage memories from a decade ago intertwine, hidden feelings are unraveled to explain how a friendship once so strong has become so fragile with mistrust.


The Girl You Left Behind by Jojo Moyes
(Adult Fiction, MOY)

Two journies weave together over a century from WWI France to present day London, both center on a single portrait that survies a long and troubling history that effects two young women who are it's keeper, turning both their lives upside down but in different eras.


The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield
(Adult Fiction, SET)

When amateur biographer Margaret Lea is chosen by elusive novelist Vida Winter to scibe the last novel of her life story, Margaret is transported into the dark gothic world of Vida's past. Vida, seeing through her last years in life, makes a deal with Maragaret, to reveal her deepset and darkest family secrets and the mystery behind why her novel 'Thirteen Tales' only published twelve.. Like a ghost story drawing Maragret back into her own past, Vida's confessions lead both women to confront their secrets and the ghosts that haunt them.


The Cottingley Secret by Hazel Gaynor
(Adult Fiction, GAY)

Based on the real life event of two grls who convinced the world that they had photographed fairies. In 1917, cousins Frances and Elsie offer their photographs to those longing for something to believe in amid a world ravaged by war. One hundred year into the future, Olivia Kavanagh finds an old manuscript in her late gradfather's bookshop, discovering a forgotten photograph that connects her present life with the girls' past, sharing the sense of believing in the unbelievable.


The Paper Girls of Paris by Jordyn Taylor
(Young Adult Fiction, TAY)

When Alice inherits an apartment in France that has been locked for more than seventy years, she is drawn into a family secret and starts digging through mysteries of the past. During WWII, Adalyn lives a very different life of resistence against the Nazi regime. Both stories intertwine until they meet at a point when Alice uncovers the truth of her grandmother's past and why her grandmother kept her secrets locked away from her family.


The Broken Girls by Simone St. James
(Adult Fiction, SAI)

In 1950, at Idlewood Hall, a boarding school for unwanted and troublesome girls, the mysterious event of the disappearance of a girl is uncovered in the future. In 2014, journalist Fiona Sheridan uncovers a shocking link to the death of her sister when her body was found in the fields of Idlewood Hall twenty years prior. 

Linda Robertson