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review 2020-06-03 13:01
The Lemoncholy Life of Annie Aster
The Lemoncholy Life of Annie Aster - Scott Wilbanks

by Scott Wilbanks

 

Oh my, where do I start? This is a time travel book, my favorite subject, with an interesting selection of misfit characters. As far as the mechanism for time travel goes, it's a simple magic door, or actually a more complex magic door than the usual, but we're only given hints about how it actually works.

 

It starts out in 1895 with some rough city life and the leader of a sandlot gang being warned to flee, though we don't yet know why. The gang are pickpockets and scrounge food in an almost Dickensian situation, only they're in Kansas City. Then we move out into the country in Kansas and still in 1895 and meet Elsbeth Grundy. She owns a farm, but one day finds a house on her back 40 and writes the occupant a letter of complaint.

 

The letter is received by Annabelle Aster, only she lives in 1995 San Francisco and sees the farmhouse as an intruder into her back yard in her own time and location. There was an anomaly about other girls swooning over David Cassidy when Annie was growing up, which seemed to be in the wrong era, but otherwise so far so good.

 

Annabelle writes back to Elsbeth, explaining her side of things and the story begins to develop into something that becomes very interesting and intricate. Annie shows the farm to her best friend, Christian, who has his own strange experiences of repeatedly seeing a face in a crowd. On one occasion time seems to slow down while this is occurring, then speeds up again.

 

There's a great quote in reference to dumbing down writing: "Never lower yourself for others. Make them rise to you. Whether they can or not is their burden, not yours."

 

The writing for this story is very good and I considered giving it the full 5 stars, but a few things towards the end could use some clarification and I had to stretch belief a little far concerning something about the bad guy's sidekick.

 

The story did include an excellently written high tension climax, some very creative methods of self defence and the most erotic kiss I've ever read, ever! The erotica writers could take some lessons from this.

 

I'm being careful about saying too much about the plot because part of the joy of reading this story was discovering the intricate connections along the way. It involves a stage magician, a murder, some rough business dealings and hiding a baby in time. I found it all very original and absorbing and pretty much read the second half of the book in one sitting.

 

In places it feels like a nice story of friendships between women, or an in-depth look at flexible morality issues, or a high action story of intrigue. There's something of everything in there and plenty of mystery to boot. Most importantly, it was a great read and will leave me remembering the characters for some time to come. I'll also be keeping an eye out for anything else written by this author.

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text 2020-05-31 17:00
The Book of Revelations
The Book of Revelations - Shanna Lauffey

by Shanna Lauffey

 

My review is here

http://lorahatesspam.booklikes.com/post/2623337/the-book-of-revelations

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review 2020-05-28 14:45
The Future Memory Man
The Future Memory Man: Episode Five of The Chronicles of the Harekaiian - Shanna Lauffey

by Shanna Lauffey

 

This is the fifth book in the series and the plot convolutions just get more interesting. One of the high points of this episode is that we finally meet Harlan, the time traveler Physicist who has been mentioned a few times since the beginning.

 

I love good science in a time travel novel and this one has obviously been well researched. I found myself looking up information on particle physics and finding books referred to that really exist. I now know a few names of top real life scientists in the field of temporal physics!

 

The beauty of it though, is that the story flows neatly despite the scientific information and it is accessible to the common person. I've never studied physics, but I followed just fine.

 

Apart from that, the character development continues to grow. There were multiple points of view and I'm starting to really get to know the subtleties of Marcus. We also get a look into some of Kallie's background and the changes that have happened over time with Connor start to come into focus.

 

It's tricky to review a book this far into a series because I don't want to write spoilers for previous episodes, but the plot deepens and takes some interesting turns. These are just getting better as they go along.

 

If you like time travel stories at all, read this series!

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text 2020-05-23 15:41
The Final Episode!
The Book of Revelations - Shanna Lauffey

I've been following this series from the beginning and it has kept getting better and better throughout. I don't follow many series and easily get bored with them, so this is a real exception. It has elements of Mystery and Thriller and even a touch of Romance, but technically it's Science Fiction because of the time travel.

 

Only there's no machine. The Time Shifters can slip through time or across distance at will, but not at the same time. And they can only move forward and backward within their life span. It's a very original concept and well executed.

 

I'm both looking forward to and dreading reading the last episode. I'm going to start today. Dreading it because then it will be finished!

 

I hope this author writes more. Oh and the paperback version is in two omnibus editions and called The Time Shifters Chronicles volumes 1 & 2. I'll add the second one to the database, the first one is already there. The series is also in audiobook.

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review 2020-05-17 14:46
Time Storm Shockwave
Time Storm Shockwave - Juliann Farnsworth

by Julienne Farnsworth

 

Have to love time travel that starts with an Einstein quote.

 

The Prologue explains a load of science, so it's definitely my kind of thing. The Earth's magnetosphere and the relationship of time, electromagnetic energy and gravity in Einstein's theories are neatly explained within context of the story. It also gives a theory of naturally occurring wormholes to explain things like the Bermuda Triangle.

 

So, the story in Chapter 1 starts with the sinking of Mauritania, then shows a tribal group of Time keepers in 98b.c. building pyramids, then jumps to 1943 and the military experimenting with time and space travel in the Bermuda triangle. At this stage it's not clear where the story is going to go, but it has reasonably good descriptive writing and I found myself feeling drawn in. There have been a few typos, but not so many that it brings me out of the story.

 

Some Bermuda triangle time and space distortions get into this one. The instruments and pilots on a routine military flight in the triangle become disoriented and suddenly find themselves off the Pacific coast. The cover up of the anomaly is more frightening than the anomaly itself, but recorded in history as a mystery.

 

Eventually we meet our protagonist, and Marine Biologist named Mark who is studying electromagnetic energies in the Bermuda Triangle area. His assistant, Stewart, is scared of the ocean, but swallows his fear to help his friend. Enter Ashlyn, a strange woman who arranges to meet Mark. Stewart immediately doesn't trust her and we soon learn why.

 

The story has out of the ordinary characters, some interesting twists and turns, and a few surprises. Much of it reads more like an espionage story, and around halfway I was wondering what happened to the time travel aspect. It does come back in later on. However, the story started to lose me just after halfway. Ashlyn, for reasons I don't want to spoil is supposed to be very sharp, but suddenly starts behaving stupidly. The typos increase in the second half and the story moves into the fantastical, which isn't a problem in itself but I suddenly felt like I was reading a different story.

 

In its favor, the story has a lot of references to genuine Physics and had me looking up a few things. The factual information is entwined with some science fiction fairly neatly, which enjoyed. However, the tone of the story changed in ways that made my assessment plummet from a possible 5 star read to the 3.5 that I've given it. I'd say it's a worthwhile read for time travel fans, but not going on my favorites shelf.

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