I am in a reading slump. I feel like I hit my double cannonball and then a wall. I keep starting books and putting them down after about a chapter or two. And the few that I have finished are ones I haven’t really wanted to write a review for. However, this was a gift from Lauri for the Cannonball Book Exchange and I would feel like a heel if I didn’t write a review saying just how much I liked this book. And I did, I liked it a lot. It’s funny and quick moving and I will absolutely be picking up the rest of the series at some point. So thank you Lauri, for introducing me to St. Mary’s.
Maxwell is a historian, she’s part of an elite group of historians who travel through time to witness historical events. This book is kind of an introductory book, and so the plot is mostly the historians madcapping from one time period to the next with some vague hints about something or someone threatening the fabric of time. It is, in a lot of ways, very similar to Connie Willis’s Oxford Time Travel books however it lacks the… anxiety inducing things that make those particular books unreadable for me. So while I think those are probably better books, I enjoyed this one much more.
My biggest quibble with the novel is that the villains in this novel all wear super black hats. They aren’t just wicked, they’re EVIL and wicked and horrible people. And I really wish that Taylor had allowed for some nuance. There’s a character who is revealed to be a traitor, but not until after he sexually assaults our hero. He isn’t just a dick, he’s THE WORST.
My other complaint is that one of the moments of drama happens because of my least favorite trope ever. The one where character A keeps something from character B for one reason or athother. Character B finds out about it and jumps to the very worst and wrong conclusion and blows up at A about it and then there is fighting and drama, and they’re all adults mind. There’s also the fact that non of this was quite true to the characters, as in I didn’t really understand all the jumping to conclusions that character B makes as this character is one of the more adulty adults in the novel. So this section felt very added into the novel to make drama. I hate this kind of trope, and I rolled my eyes quie a bit through this section of the novel.
However, as I said above, I really like the book. I’m looking forward to the others.