I ordered this book way back when it first came out – in hardcover no less – because I liked The Darkest Minds series by Alexandra Bracken. I only just got around to reading it, and I’m not quite as enthusiastic about this series debut as I was about her other work.
Apparently people’s attention span isn’t very long on the internet (by which I mean to say mine isn’t), so have a list.
– THIS BOOK IS SOOO LONG. As in, it FELT long. It could have been edited considerably. A lot of things weren’t very relevant and never came back up again. It really dragged sometimes, and it was a bit of a struggle to get through. If it hadn’t been for the fact that I liked the author’s other books, I may have DNF’d it.
– The romance was so forced?? They had like one conversation in the beginning and suddenly they were in love. I mean they basically spend a week together before they profess their love. It was an eventful week, admittedly, but still.
– It was a bit preachy sometimes. I feel like it would have been enough to show the cruelty of a certain era without then spending pages and pages explaining WHY it’s so horrible.
– Some things just plain didn’t make sense. I know it’s a novel about time travel, but I some things didn’t add up within the world.
– The protagonists were a little boring.
– SUCH. A. CHEESEFEST.
– I want to know what happens, but I’m also annoyed that I’ll have to read the sequel? So yeah. Not great.
+ A lot of different settings! From Hamilton-era America over WWII London to 17th century Syria, it was great to explore the different eras.
+ Etta wasn’t the most interesting character, but some of the side characters, like Sophia and Etta’s mother, were more intriguing (though to be clear I did NOT like her mother).
+ Time travel politics! There was a system and a history, and I’d like to find out more.
+ Things got a little more interesting towards the final showdown.
The story didn’t really stick with me very long after I set the book down, and I’m not particularly eager to read the sequel (though I still might). The worst problem, however, is that I just didn’t really fall in love with the characters. I enjoyed parts of it, but I was left a little underwhelmed by everything. Since I like this author’s other books, I’ll give it an optimistic three cupcakes.