by Amalie Jahn
If the option of time travel does become an actuality in our future, I think Amalie Jahn unravels Brooke Wallace’s story similarly to how it would happen in real life. I’m still hooked on the discovery of time travel set forth by this government in what is deemed to be the future of science at it’s best. However, subtle sci-fi creepiness sets forth when it’s explained that time travel can affect your life in the future, for example, the case of one woman revisiting her honeymoon 64 times (sounds like something I would totally do) and returns to reality in present day, realizing she’s been divorced for twelve years. It’s meddling. As Dumbledore said, “Mysterious thing, Time. Powerful, and when meddled with, dangerous.” Oh how this book only verifies that potential.
Jahn has this entire initiative down to a believable art. One trip per person to use in their lifetime as an adult, citizens have to take classes on how to travel and some even undergo intense therapy to deal with emotional implications. I love how the main character Brooke is using her one trip to save her brother, who passes due to the rare disease identified as Pulmonary Fibrosis. She is a truly individualistic character who researches endless and possible ways her brother could have contracted the sickness. I also love how the setting of this novel didn’t give me dystopian vibes. It was just a sensible and grounded set-up for a developed time.
We watch Brooke stop at nothing when it comes to obeying the laws of time travel, reveling in repeated moments of the past with her brother that she took for granted, and changing the course of his life so that he avoids contracting the disease. Brooke deals with her grief, journeys through self-discovery, and relentlessly embodies a character who will stop at nothing to achieve her goal.
One of my favorite heartfelt moments, (I usually reach for a cookie during times like these) is when Brooke’s mother offers up her own, time travel ticket. “You can have my trip,” my mother replied without a moment’s hesitation. The sacrifice parents make for their children, especially mothers…..(sighhhh….this is when I now reach for a second cookie).
Point being, I could feel for these characters because Jahn accurately pinpoints specific emotional triggers for this grieving family. I can only imagine my determination would match the courage Brooke displays in this plot. So you’re left wondering when Brooke returns back and forth between realities, WILL SHE SUCCEED? Or will you end up reaching for a dozen cookies in sorrow as it ends tragically?
Clearly, I got a bit wrapped up in the irony of time travel and how it relieved emotional hardship in people’s lives, yet it altered their timelines and irreparably could destroy them. Also, of course, romance wiggles it’s way into the wavelengths of time and causes distress between what could be and what should be. (More reasons to hug your pillow).
This book is a great teen Book Club read. I probably thought of 80 discussion questions to lead a group with. It’s even perfect dinner table conversation. Like how this concept could progressively become a modern reality, to how your journey back in time would change the course of another person’s life. As Jahn refers to it, “the retribution that other travelers were changing timelines” in other peoples’ lives. Ah! It’s crazy to think about. Already my mind is wandering around the possibilities of what would happen if even the tiniest tweak in your life changed. Definitely a novel for critical thinking.
Travel back in time to add this book to your library, which should have been sitting there minimum 9 months ago. Be in charge of your own destiny by clicking The Clay Lion (The Clay Lion Series) (Volume 1). Why not add the entire 3 part series? The Clay Lion Series (3 Book Series)
“We have to have faith that we’re on the right path. That we’re living the life that was made for us.” – Brooke, Amalie Jahn, The Clay Lion
“It was as if he knew something was wrong with me. That I didn’t belong theree, in that place and time. – Brooke, Amalie Jahn, The Clay Lion