By Ryan Graudin
Genre: Science Fiction/Time Travel
Publication Date: September 26, 2017
Bang Bang Rating:
It’s the year 2371 and we’ve discovered time travel and it’s so prevalent that it’s the best job on earth. It’s not the fun kind of time travel though; travelers are only allowed to record history and not interact with anyone but Farway’s mom broke that rule and whoopsie-all hell has broken loose.
Farway McCarthy is the best cadet in the academy, obviously, and he’s on his way to be tops in his class and the pick of any time travel job but whoopsie, he failed his test and now he’s been kicked out of school. So far, we’ve all heard this story before. He’s wallowing in his misery when his spunky and best character in the book, Imogen, cheers him up with gelato because Invictus is set in Italy. While they’re eating their gelato, Far gets a mysterious letter from this mysterious guy with the chance to captain his own ship to travel time to steal valuable artifacts. Of course Far is reckless so of course he says yes and assembles his crew-Imogen, his best friend Gram, and his girlfriend Priya. And yes this is a very diverse crew because Gram is Black and Priya, well you can figure it out.
The Invictus crew is minding their business trying to find a book before the Titanic sinks when some strange girl steals it first then happens to get on their ship. She tells them that she’ll return the book to their boss if she can be a member of their crew. They have no choice but to accept her or their boss with will kill them all.
I’m a Whovian so of course I’ve read my share of time travel books and this is by far the best I’ve read. Graudin’s writing is a breath of fresh air that doesn’t include sappy romances, predictable plots, or convoluted story lines. I’m sure people are going to find holes in her time travel rules but I don’t go into this genre looking for holes. I just want a book that’s not confusing as hell and enjoyable to read. My only issue, and it pains me to say this, is that it was too wordy. I don’t like it when the majority of the words on the page aren’t driving the plot and I felt Invictus did this. I ended skipping through the last 150 pages-YIKES.
Overall, if you are looking for a great adventure through some pretty interesting historic locations with some pretty good writing, check out Invictus.