Friday, May 3, 2013

The Accidental Time Traveller by Janis Mackay

Forget falling into the past, it's time to fall into the future. At least, that's what happened to Agatha Black, the that Saul met. In the middle of the road. With a car coming at them.

With such a dramatic start, and with her seriously old-fashioned clothes, Agatha convinces Saul that she really is from the past. Of course, Saul agrees to help her (Although he's also thinking of a 200 pound history essay competition that he could use her help in). But eventually, the two become fast friends, and well, let's just say it's a happy ending.

I liked both characters, but I think the smartest move on the part of the author was to write the book from Saul's point of view. Sure, it would have been more fun to see how kids from the past view the future, but I don't think it's possible to sustain that over a novel. And how do you find new ways to explain "car" and "popcorn" and other modern inventions? It's more effective to have your other protagonist (the one that's not narrating the book) show wonder and note it all down.

And that, became a writing tip. I wonder if that was the point of the story... Nah, that's me over-analysing.

The book was a decent length (over 200 pages if I remember correctly), and I did like both characters. The supporting characters, on the other hand, felt a bit weak. I would have loved more characterisation. And like most modern (that's 201X era to you people from the past/future) TV shows, the Saul's parents didn't appear much or contribute to solving the problem in any way.

Overall, this is a decent book about time travel (in Scotland - I almost forgot, the book's set in Scotland!)

Disclaimer: I got a free copy of this book from NetGalley in exchange for a free and honest review.

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