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Old 09-08-2008, 04:16 PM
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Alessan is offline
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: Tel Aviv
Posts: 23,966
Originally Posted by ArchiveGuy View Post
I remember finding a book in the seatback of a plane I was on, so I thumbed through it (reading bits & pieces amounting to about 60% or so). Cheap paperback, at least a decade ago (though I got the sense the book was even older by the look of it), in the 200-300 page neighborhood. Don't remember the author, but the name definitely didn't ring a bell at the time.

Protagonist is Tour Guide who works for Time Travel Agency. He takes people back to different periods of time to indulge in period-style adventures, including decadent/erotic behavior. Don't remember all the setpieces, but ancient Rome (orgies, debauchery, etc.) was a prominent setting. There is quite a lot of fairly explicit sexual descriptions throughout the book.

Don't remember any of the plot elements, but I think he ends up falling for this woman (perhaps a redhead?) and sleeping with her, only to discover that she is his ancient ancestor (from the Arthurian age, maybe?). Although there seem to be more liberal provisions involving the interference/undue influencing of time, I believe the Time Travel protocols still involve a couple big DON'Ts, and this is one of them. He becomes a pariah or outcast or fugitive or non-entity or something, but can't remember anything more (including how it ended).

Didn't take the book off the plane, but always wondered about it and always meant to post the inquiry here, so....There you Go!

Up the Line,
by Robert Silverberg (ever heard of him? He's written a couple of books). Byzantium, not Rome, but you've pretty much remembered the plot - except for the fact that he gets into trouble, not for sleeping with an ancestor, but for losing a tourist somewhere in time.

As for the ending, what happens is that