What did this book do to me? I still don’t know. I do know that I fell in love.
I didn’t know much about this book. I thought it was about time travel (wrong!) and was a revenge story (wrong again). It also meant that I had very low expectations even though I heard a few rumblings that this was a book a feew people liked. It just isn’t widely talked about.
Then I read it. And I was sucked so deeply into this story that I didn’t want to do anything else. I inhaled it. I clamored for next pages. I never wanted to put it down. It inhabited my every thought for the time I was reading. That is what a good book does, isn’t it?
Anyway, this is one of those books that balanced plot and characters really well. Part of that is because a large portion of what drove the plot was actually knowing the characters. As a result if you never got a good sense of these characters, this book simply would not have worked. Clearly, it did work for me because I really fell in love with these characters.
The one problem that I’m running into reviewing this book is if I discuss much of the character growth I have to discuss the characters and how they interacted and how their relationships grew. If I do that I will spoil the plot. So I really can’t say much about the characters without also spoiling the plot, which is a bummer. But know this, I absolutely loved the characters. The various elements in the story that heightened their traits and the events they dealt with made me fall head-over-heels in love.
I will say that in terms of the plot, I pretty much figured out the major twists extremely early on. That said, it was the characters that made it worth the journey anyway. Getting to see how they reacted to those plot points was key. The plot was light. Things happened, but there was also down time to spend with characters. It isn’t the kind of story that is slow, but it isn’t super speedy either.
The biggest problem that I had with the book came in the first 30 pages. That is probably the worst place to have a problem because you’re most likely to lose people there. In those early pages the story was rather info dumpy. You’d get large chunks of explanations about the world. Yes, these explanations were necessary for everything to be understood. Without them things would be too confusing. By putting it at the beginning you had a clear understanding of how things worked. It also allowed you to figure out slow subtle clues along with way. I just feel like it could have been handled a bit more elegantly so it didn’t feel too dumpy. Someone who may be newer to science fiction might be turned away because it can come off as complex. It makes you think.
That brings me to one other thing. This book most certainly falls under science fiction. It is about dimension jumping after all. As a result we are delving into alternate realities, which is a subgenre of science fiction. It’s very science fiction with it’s premise and the mechanics that make the plot move and some of the big elements. However, what makes up much of the story is the characters. It is a romance and a character study more than pure science fiction. It’s about the characters, the science fiction elements help propel the plot so the characters are forced to grow.
I can’t wait for the next book.