A Scientific Romance by Ronald Wright (Anchor) 

WHAT if....?

What if H.G.Wells' time machine really existed and someone discovered how to use it?

That's the fascinating premise for this cracking sci-fi/time travel tale.

The book kicks off in 1999 with archaeologist David Lambert writing to his best friend Bird. He has an extraordinary story to tell, one which will propel Lambert and the reader into the distant future.

The narrative style has Lambert addressing his thoughts either to Bird or Anita, the woman they both loved.

It's a journal of sorts, one that Lambert hopes will eventually be discovered. Having come across Wells' machine, he makes the bold decision to try and follow another time traveller, the exotically-sounding Tatiana Cherenkova, for reasons I won't divulge.

What follows is an arduous journey across an empty, post-apocalpytic Britain where initially Lambert's only companion is a friendly puma called Graham. It is a fascinating, absorbing travelogue.

However when Lambert reaches Scotland he has his first encounter with humans, who turn out to be more threatening than any puma.

A Scientific Romance ticks so many boxes, it will appeal to a wide audience and even at the very end you are once again left with the thought what if....?