Thursday, January 7, 2016

#Thursday Review - Passenger by Alexandra Bracken (Young Adult, Science Fiction)

Series: Passenger # 1
Format: E-Galley, 496 pages
Release Date: January 5, 2016
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction

passage, n.
i. A brief section of music composed of a series of notes and flourishes.
ii. A journey by water; a voyage.
iii. The transition from one place to another, across space and time.

In one devastating night, violin prodigy Etta Spencer loses everything she knows and loves. Thrust into an unfamiliar world by a stranger with a dangerous agenda, Etta is certain of only one thing: she has traveled not just miles but years from home. And she’s inherited a legacy she knows nothing about from a family whose existence she’s never heard of. Until now.

Nicholas Carter is content with his life at sea, free from the Ironwoods—a powerful family in the colonies—and the servitude he’s known at their hands. But with the arrival of an unusual passenger on his ship comes the insistent pull of the past that he can’t escape and the family that won’t let him go so easily. Now the Ironwoods are searching for a stolen object of untold value, one they believe only Etta, Nicholas’ passenger, can find. In order to protect her, he must ensure she brings it back to them— whether she wants to or not.

Together, Etta and Nicholas embark on a perilous journey across centuries and continents, piecing together clues left behind by the traveler who will do anything to keep the object out of the Ironwoods’ grasp. But as they get closer to the truth of their search, and the deadly game the Ironwoods are playing, treacherous forces threaten to separate Etta not only from Nicholas but from her path home . . . forever.

Passenger is the first installment in a brand new series by author Alexandra Bracken. The same author who brought you The Darkest Minds series. Passenger created a whole lot of buzz from almost everyone who went to 2015's BEA conference. They say this book is supposed to be a cross between Outlander and Time Bandits. Passenger mixes together time travel through different countries and eras, romance, and adventure while featuring two distinctly different characters in Nicholas Carter, and Henrietta (Etta) Spencer.

While Nicholas is from an era where the American Revolution is charging ahead at full steam and knows all about traveling through passages to different places and times, Etta is a violinist of some renown who ends up getting her world turned upside down after she travels back to the 18th Century and finds that she is the key to finding an item of some importance that is causing some major rifts between the families who can time travel.

Passenger alternates between Nicholas and Etta at times, and actually starts out with Nicholas and his half-brother Julian searching for a lost item of some importance. I actually agree with some of my more intuitive reviewers that the opening of this book was incredibly boring and the final part was the most interesting, action packed, and heart breaking. It wasn't until Etta found herself aboard a 18th century ship along with her "captive" Sophia Ironwood, that the story actually started to get it's sea legs. It wasn't until Etta met the nefarious Grandfather Ironwood and was given no choice but to travel with Nicholas to find the item of some importance, that my interest started focusing in on what was happening. 

Etta has a whole lot of catching up to do in order to be anywhere near as formidable to those who have traveled through passages for centuries. She had no clue about her own mother's exploits, or the fact that there are three distinct families that travel through time. Etta is a character who isn't going to allow herself to fall into social racism situations. She is who she is, and her heart loves who it loves. I can't be angry with the romance, yet I found myself wishing it was cut down by about 100 pages.

I loved the traveling aspects of this story. From modern NYC, to 18th century NYC under British assault. From London during World War Two, to 16th Century Syria, and 17th century Cambodia. I loved that Nicholas was a freed slave who just wanted his freedom from the Ironwoods and to become Captain of his own ship, and to sail the seas without worry about being pulled into someone else's problems. I love that Nicholas was written as a very astute and educated character, and not someone who has no education because of the color of his skin.   

Even though I had some minor issues with Passenger, I won't be stopping now until I find out what actually happened at the end of this book. Book # 2 called Wayfarer is actually supposed to be scheduled for the fall of 2016, or early 2017. See you then.

1 comment:

  1. I've been looking forward to reading this one. It sounds fun.