Posts Tagged ‘Time Travel’

Out of Time by Monique Martin

September 16, 2018 - 2:39 pm No Comments

Out of Time by Monique Martin
Published 20th November 2013
296 pages

Simon Cross was a professor of the Occult, helped by assistant Elizabeth (Lizzy)West, he taught his student the theory behind vampires, demons and other creatures. What he does not expect is an artefact off his deceased grandfather transporting him and Lizzy of to the 1920s. Where he must put all his knowledge to the test.
Simon and Lizzy were likeable characters; however, they were complete opposites. Lizzy strived for adventure and took everything in her stride when they were transported back to the 1920s. Simon on the other hand was cautious and over-protective, what didn’t help were the dreams he had.
The story flowed steadily, and the scenes set in the 1920s were well researched. The scenes where Lizzy got a job in the speakeasy showed how quick she could adapt and as the story continued you get to find out more about her childhood. Throughout the story you can sense their attraction for each other. To the point that I wanted to give Simon a shake and tell him to man up.
The only thing I did not enjoy was the stereotypical British statements and I don’t know why I am surprised that Simon being a British character in America was a tea drinking posh person who went to boarding school. Regular folks can be professor without a boarding school education.
I will dip into the series again, just to see which other time periods they go to

Time Shards by Dana Fredsti and David Fitzgerald

March 23, 2018 - 7:16 pm No Comments

Time Shards by Dana Fredsti and David Fitzgerald

Published by Titan Books on 30th January 2018

442 pages

Reviewed by Chris Stocks

Imagine that spacetime, rather than being continuous, is like a stack of jigsaw puzzles, with each puzzle being an instant in time. Imagine further, as per the premise of this SF thriller, that some unknown temporal Event breaks up these jigsaws into random pieces and stitches the world together again. The result is a patchwork landscape consisting of pieces of varying shape and size, all in the right place geographically, but torn from a random era of history, from the Silurian to the present – and possibly beyond.

Initially the narrative is as fractured as the landscape, told from the viewpoints of a variety of people, some of whom are historical figures, including George Washington, Julius Caesar and Neil Armstrong. However, after these brief episodes illustrating the scope and effects of the Event, the action is then mostly confined to south-east England as seen through the eyes of a smaller cast of characters including Amber, a feisty present-day Californian, currently living in Essex; Blake, a grizzled World War II and ex-SAS veteran from the 1950s; Cam, a young Celtic warrior from pre-Roman Britannia, and Alex Brice, a policewoman from 1985.

Together with a small group of other survivors, they navigate the post-apocalyptic landscape, struggling against fearsome prehistoric predators – from carnivorous dinosaurs to dire wolves and giant scorpions. But, as so often happens in such scenarios, their most dangerous foes are not these creatures but other humans. Here it is a group of Roundhead soldiers, who, mistakenly believing that they caused the Event, want to burn them at the stake as witches and warlocks.

The group rescues ‘Merlin’, a mysterious, catatonic character from these Roundheads. Recovering from an apparently fatal headwound, he reveals himself as a near-future astronomer. He also claims to know something about the cause of the temporal Event – and maybe a way to reverse it…

This is the first book in a trilogy by Dana Fredsti and David Fitzgerald. It is an exciting, fast-moving story with an interesting set of characters, an unusual setting and plenty of monsters – both animal and human. There are a few technical inaccuracies – for example, George Washington could not have identified a herd of elephant-like creatures as Mastodons in 1789, as this term was not coined by Cuvier until 1806 (thanks, Wikipedia!) – but this doesn’t really matter. This is not a work of hard-SF, but a rollicking adventure – and as an adventure story it works superbly. The protaganists are interesting and (mostly) sympathetic, and I enjoyed both the surrealistically patchwork setting and the break-neck pace of the plot. Time Shards ends on a suitably suspenseful cliff-hanger and I look forward to seeing where the adventure leads in the second volume. In summary, a fast-paced read and a thoroughly enjoyable piece of escapism.