When You Reach Me
Clocks and Watches
Since time and time travel are important themes in When You Reach Me, we end up seeing plenty of images of watches and clocks. Time becomes three-dimensional. It's everywhere in the novel. There's Mom's egg timer (2.1), the giant invisible clock in the sky that Marcus sees (10.5-6), Julia's little silver watch that she flings and breaks (28.14-17), and the watch Sal gets for Christmas (40.1), just to name a few. Clocks and watches are a way to measure, or make sense, of time, so the images of all those clocks and watches give us a hint that that's just what the novel is trying to do.