I never know to say in these things. I guess that says something about me. I read a lot, write stories, and like books. I like a good debate. Nothing else is to say. :-)
This book was one of the things I liked the most" different. When you read a much fantasy as I do, you are happy to get a break from the same thing time and again, and one that was not too simple and predictable.
This story is told from two points of view Etta and Nickolas. We meet Etta in 2015, she is a violin prodigy about to play an important concert when she overhears something that changes her life forever. The night ends with her being kidnapped and pushed through a doorway through time where she lands on a ship, currently being boarded by pirates in 1776.
And this is where we meet Nickolas, who is an "legal pirate" and as been tasked by a mysterious family to bring Etta to New York City to meet the head of that family for some unknown task. She soon finds out that her family was one of many who have/had the ability to travel through time, and that she is needed to retrieve something for the basically ruling time travel family, and they are willing to kill and destroy anyone in their path to get it. Nickolas is part of this family, but kinda of a black, unwanted sheep, and reluctantly pulled into Etta's quest.
I liked the world created in this story. The ability to time travel isn't some big fix all...it has limitations and lots of rules that the travelers may follow....and there are many dangers, mainly that this kind of ability also draws the worst type of people and the worst type of greed. And it is the goal of Etta and Nickolas to stop one power hungry monster from shaping the world to his own liking and making everyone bend to his will. And he has already gotten on big head start in world domination.
I liked that the characters were all whole people. There were no 1D villains...yes, the main bad guy is terrible, but in the end he is motivated not only by greed...but love. And that twists him into the monster he is. Nickolas is such an interesting character, he was born in a time that placed so many limitations on him, and he is born into a family that placed even more...and he only wants a way out. Freedom. And every decision he makes good or bad, leads back to this, you understand him because of his story. I related to him the most because of his backstory. He is a good example of a POC character and how worthy their stories are to be told. His entire life and struggles and motivations, because he was born into slavery, were so understandable to me. He wants so much and is capable of so much....but is so limited buy outside forces. This is what this book is ultimately about....expectation put on you by society and family and how they become prisons...sometimes of our own making...and the ways our quest for freedom for choice make us or break us. Your race, your gender, your religion all of these things sometimes place limitations on your happiness...and even if you are a powerful time traveler...you can't escape them.
I also enjoyed the romance. There was no forced/plot device misunderstandings meant to keep them apart. All their concerns and fight were real. I understood why Nickolas was so drawn to Etta, and I understood why he also kept his distance. I liked that the entire thing wasn't dragged out for drama and they were both honest and open as much as they could be. It made things less frustrating. I bought it, and that's all that matter when your story is centered on the connection between 2 people.
I have gone on for a minute...but all in all, this was great. And it left off at a good place and a promise for more greatness. I look forward to reading the next installment.