I haven't read much fiction recently. A while ago The Time Traveler's Wife came in my direction and I have just finished reading it.
This is a beautiful love story set in modern day Chicago. The lovers are Henry and Clare. Their author, Audrey Niffenegger, brings them to life and love in an intense yet gentle fashion. They are beautifully formed, completely credible characters making their lives in artistic and academic circles.
The twist in the story is, of course, the time travelling. Henry suffers from a genetic condition that causes him to be displaced in time (and space) at unpredictable moments. As a result their relationship builds over an even longer span than normal. In the opening of the story Clare is a child and Henry is arriving in her time now and then from some years in the future when he is an adult.
Yes, it may sound weird. Yet Audrey Niffenegger introduces the whole process in a credible way, so that from the beginning the attention is not on the technicalities of the temporal displacement, but on the characters, their lives and relationships. The reader does have to pay some attention to the metadata heading each scene indicating the date and the ages of Henry and Clare. But, once you get the hang of it there is no real distraction from the story.
So I am left in wonder. Wonder at the human condition in which such love between a man and woman can grow and flourish. Wonder at the human imagination that can produce such a story, carefully crafted, holding our attention, bringing us to tears and joy as the characters live through the pages of the book and in our minds and imaginations so vividly that you would not be surprised to meet them on a visit to Chicago.