The philosophy of time can be a confusing subject, with long winded ways of saying the obvious, but in this book Novikov manages to avoid falling into this trap. As an expert in relativity, Novikov shows that modern physics can give more substance to discussions about time. He desciribes how ideas about time have developed, from the thoughts of Plato and Aristotle, up to the 20th century. The bulk of the book investigates the nature of time from the general relativistic viewpoint, looking at the big bang and black holes. The final chapters of the book look at the possibility of time travel via wormholes in space. Overall the book presents some deep ideas in a non-technical manner.
In common with many popular science books, this book is partly autobiographical. However, I thought that this was the weakest aspect of the book - Novikov's anecdotes don't seem to fit in very well. That said, it does give a useful function of showing the Russian involvement in fields where the western researchers are better known. One sees how similar work was carried out on both sides of the iron curtain, with Yakov Zeldovich corresponding to John A. Wheeler, and similarly Novikov to Kip Thorne - both of whom can lay a claim to starting the recent interest in wormholes.