My own unapologetic opinions on books and writing.
by Shanna Lauffey
(Sorry for repeat, but my review disappeared!)
I'm definitely hooked on this series. The second book continues soon after where the first book left off. The author has said on her blog that she looks at the episodes like television episodes, and I can see that. Each episode ties up the immediate situation neatly, but there is a larger, continuing story. You don't get left on cliffhangers, but you can see there is going to be more to tell.
This one even gave hints about what the third story will be about and I'm really looking forward to it as it sounds like we're going to get to know Marcus better and get some extensive time travel information about how it all works and why there can be exceptions to some of the rules.
That's one thing that was introduced in this episode, a couple of exceptions to what had appeared to be solid rules, but they are done in a believable way. It all makes perfectly good sense.
It starts out with Akalya realizing that she's been too far in the past for too long, but she has a few things to do before she returns to her own time. Like in the first book, we get a real feel for times and places where she travels, including 1969 San Francisco. I really enjoyed that part. Some of the convolutions of time travel come up and we get to know a few characters from the first book better, as well as meeting a couple of new people. How important any of them will be over the course of the full series is hard to tell at this point, but there are a few definite main characters that I expect will keep showing up.
Most important besides Akalya herself is Marcus. I don't want to write spoilers for those who haven't read the first book yet, but Marcus is the strong, quiet type and the dynamics between him and Akalya has been a real tease. We learn why she has an Arabic name and some of the culture of the time shifters and I thought that the information about where some of the strange terms that were in the first book came from was artfully worked in.
The story, like Time Shifters, strikes a balance between Akalya's relaxed attitude towards crisis and some fast action when she needs to escape a situation. As she says somewhere in the book, time is her playground. Only now some limitations are being put on her movements because those who want what the time shifters have are closing in and learning from their own mistakes. It is up to the time shifters to stay a step ahead as the enemy begins to learn too much about their habits and to set traps.
I'm not going to hesitate to give this one the 5 stars I should have given the first one. As the second book in a 10 book series, it's sort of transitional, expanding on the information from book one and setting up book 3, but the writing is well done and the feeling of visiting the places and living through the time periods is mesmerizing. A fully enjoyable experience.