#BookBeginnings The Operator by Howard Gershkowitz

Today I’m reading a friend’s debut novel, The Operator by Howard Gershkowitz for Book Beginnings on Fridays.

Book Beginnings is a fun meme hosted by Rose City Reader blog. To participate, share the first sentence or so of a novel you are reading and your thoughts about it. When you are finished, add your URL to the Book Beginnings page linked above. Hope to see you there!



The Operator*by Howard Gershkowitz

(*Amazon Affiliate link)

Summary:  Harold Russell takes his wife Laura to an historical hotel in Prescott, Arizona for a much-needed vacation.  While admiring an antique switchboard, a young switchboard operator using a brand-new version appears and talks to him. Because his wife can’t see or hear her, Harold wonders if he’s seeing ghosts. Another encounter with the young woman, whose name is Talia, in the middle of the night leads him to realize he’s traveling back in time to 1929. Using his knowledge that the Great Depression is imminent, he and Talia hatch a plan to prevent it. Arriving back in 2017, he finds the plan has failed, but Talia has left him a fortune and another plan to prevent an even bigger catastrophe.

First Sentence:

Journal Entry
December 21, 2016
7 a.m., Starbucks Dobson and Frye, Chandler, Arizona

It’s been a long time since Laura and I have gone away together. I don’t know if it’ll do much good, but it’s worth a try.


I met Howard Gershkowitz at a writers group at our local library a few years ago, so I’ve had glimpses of this novel coming together. It is exciting that it is finally published. He never revealed the ending to our group, so we finally get to learn what happens.

The novel mentions a number of real places in Arizona, which is fun for locals to read.

What do you think?


  1. Bev Bouwer

    It’s always good to read a “locally set” novel. I love the sense of familiarity. Hope you enjoy it.

    • Roberta

      Yes, although I always wonder how well they work for readers who don’t know the area at all.

  2. Lisbeth @ The Content Reader

    I like the opening quote. It is always nice to read a book from someone you have met and which is set locally. I never used to like time travelling, but there has been so many good books in recent years (not to mention Outlander) that I am getting quite fond of them.

    • Roberta

      I know what you mean about time travel. This is done pretty seamlessly.

  3. Laurel-Rain Snow

    I have spent vacations in Arizona, and recall how perfect Prescott would be for a spooky story.

    Thanks for sharing…and for visiting my blog.

  4. Catherine @ Book Club Librarian

    That’s quite an intriguing plot–I’d keep reading on!

  5. Ashley S.

    I’m completely intrigued by this. Sounds like a fascinating read. Thanks for sharing! Hope you have a great weekend! 🙂

  6. Intriguing! I really like the sound of this one and the beginning is great.

  7. Anne@Headfullofbooks

    I often think about going back in time and preventing some catastrophic from happening. I can never decide what to pick. My Friday Quotes and review

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