Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Book Review: " Time Riders " by Alex Scarrow - A MUST READ!!


Liam O'connor should have died at sea when the Titanic sank in 1912.

Maddy Carter should have died in a plane crash in 2010.

Sal Vikram should have died in a fire in 2026.

But moments before death, a mysterious man told them to take his hand- and they were whisked away to safety.

Now Liam, Maddy, and Sal are working as TimeRiders for a top-secret agency with only one purpose: to stop time travel from destroying the world.  Yes, it's possible to travel through time, and there are those from the future who will try to change the past for their own immoral gain.  The teens first assignment pits them against Paul Kramer, a brilliant physicist from the future who plans to lead Nazi Germany to victory in World War II- with apocalyptic consequences.  Can they save humanity and fulfill their destinies as keepers of time?


Ok, so I have to tell you, HANDS DOWN one of the best books I have read in a while.  I am proud of myself too as I picked this all on my own.  I was hangin in a B & N as I always do and also as always, I have to leave there with something.  Its's rare that I go in there without coming out with a book.  Anyway, I spotted this on the shelf, which I can't remember if it was the YA or kid's section, but it was in the new arrivals regardless.  One of my secret sci-fi passions is time travel.  It has been an interest of mine since I was a little boy.  The reason I'm telling you this is because there's nothing more that I love than a really good book about time travel.  The stinky thing is there are so many, 99 out of 100 times it's the "same old stuff."  Well, there was a show once I thought in the 70's or 80's called "Time Cop" or something like that which my pops told me about that sounded similar to him when I gave him the scenario.  Even if there was the same "concept," its definitely got a different story line, and regardless, I absolutely loved it.  It was extremely well written for starters.  It has short chapters, which is my favorite.  I kept telling myself the entire way through that "I can't believe I might have found a great one.... I hope he doesn't disappoint me!"  I can't put my finger on it exactly other than to say it was just a great book.  I do think that the story line was well thought out for sure.  Enough that book 2, called "TimeRiders- Day of the Predator," was only released a week ago in the UK and I pleaded with them to please, please send me a copy even though I am overseas."  And thankfully, they obliged.  Anyway, here's my take on the story in a general sort of way.


The opening is awesome.  Each of the 3 mains here are about to die in some way and in some time.  They are given a chance out. So basically, become a TimeRider or die in about a minute.  The 3 accept.  Stationed under a bridge in NYC, 2001 (Sept 10th and 11th to be exact, right before 9/11) with history being what we know it as.  Their job is to make sure that if anyone in the future with a time machine (although everyone is banned from making them in the future because of the potential damage they can inflict) that goes back and screws things up, they fix.  That simple.  

So after a bit of training, and definitely still wet behind the ears, Liam, Maddy, and Sal along with their boss/mentor Mr. Foster and Bob, who is such a cool computerized/human test tube thingy get their first mission.  By the way, Bob is like 7 feet tall and super strong, etc.  Some guy who worked for the inventor of the first time machine decided to go from 2066 back to 1941 and tell Hitler that he does things wrong and he can help him be victorious.  Well, he does and causes a world wide nuclear fallout where what is left in 2001 is like a picture of hell with these strange mutations of humans.  Basically, the end of the end of the world.

The situation- the TimeRiders have to fix it.  Here's where the writing was just fantastic. From a training mission involving the assassination of JFK to secret messages left many years ago in the Museum of Natural History.  This guy was spot on ever page of every chapter.  The suspense was there for me several times which was cool too.  The other thing that surprised me is I am ok with a trilogy usually, or a series that doesn't go too far deep in, but not with what usually looks like it's going to be more.  I don't know for sure, but he came out (in the U.S. prob next year) with the second book in the series and I am anticipating (and hoping) many more to come.  I will definitely continue on with this series as long as he keeps bringing em the way he did.  

I will definitely give a short review when I get and read Day of the Predator.  I know you guys somewhat value my opinion.  Also, you know that I only review books I really liked a lot.  I have to tell you, this one is definitely worth getting.  I wouldn't steer you wrong (not intentionally anyways) and I would say that this will easily be one of your better reads.  If you pick it up and give it a shot, definitely get back here and tell me what you thought.  I'd love to hear your opinion.