*I received an ecopy of this book from the publisher. This has not influenced my review.*
*Note: If you’re one of those people who likes going into books completely blind, maybe don’t read this. Otherwise, I’ve hidden all the things that are actual spoilers.*
I’m gonna keep this review simple and go with some lists. You can’t go wrong with lists.
Things I Liked:
– The premise was intriguing. I normally avoid time travel books, but this one just sounded good, and my favorite thing for a while was just the way Damien and John were both constantly so confused by each other (things like technology, style, people being alive or dead, slang, etc.) since neither one realized they were from different times. The author did a really good job with that aspect. But even once Damien figured out what was going on, the time travel was still intriguing for the ways it was impacting Damien’s life and relationships.
– The relationship between Damien and Levi was interesting too. First it was just because of the student-professor thing and seeing the way they had to hide it and the effect it had on the two of them and their relationship. But further into the book, it was because, with the other things happening in the plot, their relationship and its problems became more complex.
– The romance was not the same old, predictable thing. Even though the love triangle mentioned is pretty much the focus, this is not a romance in the sense that it won’t fulfill all the tropes and expectations.
– There was disability representation! I didn’t even know when I picked up this book that the main character had epilepsy. It was somewhat related to the sci-fi aspect of the book, but in a way that still seemed like good rep. (Although I have to say, I do not have or know much about epilepsy to be able to say whether the portrayal was realistic. I can only say it seemed like it was.)
– I felt bad for Damien when his friends and family didn’t believe him, and the way Damien felt and reacted as well as the way everyone else felt and reacted was complex and realistic.
Things I Disliked:
– The 1st person, present tense POV did not work for me.
– The writing had a lot of telling and not a lot of showing. And a lot of it was unnecessary, like all of MCs feelings and thoughts about little things that weren’t important, or things that could’ve easily been showed and inferred. It read more like a diary or like he was explaining a story to a friend even though there wasn’t much (or maybe any) direct breaking of the fourth wall that I noticed.
– Levi and John (the two love interests) were inconsistent in the beginning (but they eventually evened out).
– Damien was not particularly likeable. *SPOILER* I just couldn’t excuse his cheating. *END SPOILER* I was hesitant to put this in the dislike section though because selfishness is a realistic personality trait, especially for a late teen or early twenty-something. (I’m not saying everyone that age is selfish, but I know I was more selfish in some ways at that age without always even realizing it while I was still experiencing a lot of new things relationship-wise and kinda figuring things out. I’m not saying I did what he did or that his actions were ok, just that his actions were believable.) And it wasn’t like his selfishness was excused—he recognized it and felt guilty, and everyone else was angry and hurt and telling him off for his behavior, so there were consequences.
– I had one little niggle with the time travel. *SPOILER* I was ok with it at first when Damien’s time traveling had already happened in the past and had already had it’s effect in the present. You know, like, even if he hadn’t done it yet, it already happened in the past. But then he managed to change the past, which just bothers me in time travel books. And I would’ve liked to have more information about the new present time and how his relationship with Levi was different. *END SPOILER* But that’s precisely why I avoid time travel books, I almost always have issues with them. Other people might not mind this.
So overall, I didn’t love all the telling in the writing, but I thought the premise was intriguing and the romance interesting and unpredictable!
Anyone who likes time travel, flawed MCs, and unpredictable, atypical romance.