In 2013, sixteen-year-old Alora is having blackouts. Each time she wakes up in a different place with no idea how she got there. The one thing she is certain of? Someone is following her.
In 2146, seventeen-year-old Bridger is one of a small number of people born with the ability to travel to the past. While on a routine school time trip, he sees the last person he expected—his dead father. The strangest part is that, according to the Department of Temporal Affairs, his father was never assigned to be in that time. Bridger’s even more stunned when he learns that his by-the-book father was there to break the most important rule of time travel—to prevent someone’s murder.
And that someone is named Alora.
Determined to discover why his father wanted to help a “ghost,” Bridger illegally shifts to 2013 and, along with Alora, races to solve the mystery surrounding her past and her connection to his father before the DTA finds him. If he can stop Alora’s death without altering the timeline, maybe he can save his father too.
When I started this book, I was really interested in the premise – time travel is fun, always, of course, but I wanted to see this story about a futuristic society of time travelers. The futuristic world has more than time travelers (they have teleporters and mind manipulators), and they use them only to observe and record history for entertainment purposes. Bridger, on one such mission, finds his dead father in the past and is urged to go looking for a ‘ghost’, essentially a girl who was in the past (as from his perspective). On the other side of time, you have Alora who is living through typical high school bullshit, including tolerating daily bullying from her sort-of cousins. She is starting to get blackouts where she shifts out of places, and if you guessed that she is one such teleporter, ding ding!
While the story base of the future world and the abilities was quite good, the plot itself was a bore. For much of the plot, nothing is happening. Bridger comes to spend months in 2013, but doesn’t do much of anything. Alora herself is passive and is just, you know, scared about what is happening to her, but not telling anyone or doing anything about it. Mixed in is a serial killer plot, which did not blend well with the main sci-fi story going on, and just took time away from the latter. Towards the climax, some bombshells were dropped, but they could have served better as within the plot of this novel too. Overall, it dragged on teenage angst and murder mysteries in a sci-fi plot and felt like a disconnected mess in totality.
Received an advance reader copy in exchange for a fair review from Sky Pony Press, via Edelweiss.