Time’s Twisted Arrow (The CHRONOS Files #1) by Rysa Walker
Genre: YA Fantasy/Adventure
They weren’t panic attacks. Of that, seventeen year old Kate is certain, no matter what the shrink told her parents. But it’s even harder to accept the explanation offered by her terminally ill grandmother – that Kate has inherited designer DNA from the time-traveling historians of CHRONOS, who were stranded in the past by a saboteur. Kate knows that her grandmother’s story could easily be the brain tumor talking, but that doesn’t explain the odd medallion or the two young men – one of them hauntingly familiar — who simply vanish before her eyes on the subway. It doesn’t explain Trey, the handsome stranger who now occupies Kate’s assigned seat in trig class. And it definitely doesn’t explain why Kate is now in an alternate timeline, where leaders of a previously unknown cult hold great power and are planning a rather drastic form of environmental defense.
In this new reality, Kate’s grandmother was murdered at age twenty-two on a research trip to the past, which means that Kate’s mother was never born, her father doesn’t know her and, for all intents and purposes, she doesn’t exist. The only thing keeping her from disappearing entirely is the strange blue medallion around her neck, and the only thing keeping her sane is her burgeoning relationship with Trey. To restore the time line, Kate must travel back to 1893 and keep herself and her grandmother clear of H.H. Holmes, the serial killer who is stalking young women at the Chicago World’s Fair. But that choice comes at a price – she’ll remember the past few months with Trey, but when he looks at her, he’ll see a total stranger.
Cover Talk: I like the cover for the most part. I dig the twisted looking clock, but I was hoping the cover would look more like the medallion that is mentioned in Time’s Twisted Arrow. Maybe some period looking silhouettes in the background to show the time-jumping.
First Line: “The heel of my pretty, but totally useless, white kid boot ripped a six inch gash in the hem of my skirt as I whipped around the corner.”
Why I Read It: Time travel is one of my “yes, please!” topics when it comes to books. I will give anything to do with time-travel a chance. I haven’t encountered it much in YA, so I was pleasantly surprised when I saw this tour pop up on Xpresso Book Tours.
Characters: Kate is such a strong and smart character. I really love that she is so open to something that most people would not believe. I suppose it helps that she has experienced unexplainable things and can see things that other people can’t. I also love how she has moments of doubt but that she gets over it to protect the ones she love. Very noble. I really like her.
Katherine, Kate’s grandmother, is my favorite! Oh, my gosh, I want to be her. I do not envy her her life and all of the heartache she had to go through, but she has huge library. I’m imagining the library in Inkheart and Helen Mirren as Katherine.
Trey is too perfect! Seriously, he is such a sweetheart and I love how much he wants to help Kate, even when they don’t know anything about each other. He could have carted her off to a looney bin, but instead drives her around and accepts her crazy sounding ideas of time-jumping.
Plot/World-building: When I read the synopsis, I was a wee bit afraid that I wouldn’t be able to keep up with all of the time-jumping, alternate realities bit. I can keep up with it fine on Doctor Who, but I was weary that in a novel it would become too convoluted for me to enjoy. But Walker does a great job at presenting this world through Katherine and Conner’s lessons/diaries/journals. Also the CHRONOS gene is brilliant and also easily explained.
One of my favorite parts of Time’s Twisted Arrow is the religious cult created by Saul, or as he calls himself, Brother Cyrus. I have a fascination with cults and religion and this was a very well thought out and executed addition to the story. I also enjoyed the fact that there is quite a bit of romance in this book, but it’s not the main point.
The ending of this book is by far one of the best that I have read in a while. There are a couple of characters that make an appearance in the end and allow for something really interesting to happen in the second novel. And speaking of second novel. I need it. Now.
Final Thoughts: Wonderful characters, flawless descriptions, high stakes, action, romance, and time-jumping. I seriously cannot recommend this book enough. It is absolutely amazing.
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