No spoilers in this review of Passenger by Alexandra Bracken! I give it 3.5 stars. It was an enjoyable read but didn’t keep me up late at night. The time travel aspect was interesting, but the pacing was a bit slow.
The main storyline begins in modern day New York City, the home of Etta Spencer. She’s a talented young violinist on the verge of stardom but is unexpectedly thrust into a world of time travel on the night of her pre-debut concert. Etta is soon on a mission taking her all over the globe in a variety of time frames spanning hundreds of years. She is paired with Nicholas on her journey. He is a bit of an outsider in the time traveling world but is the only one Etta feels she can trust. The two are on a race against time to track down an important time travel artifact. They make a good team, but they’re each keeping a secret from the other, which threatens their growing bond.
Nicholas and Etta are likable characters, and their chemistry is fun. They understand each other despite being from different times and places. I don’t often read books about time travel, and I enjoyed learning the rules and parameters Bracken sets for it in this series. A unique element she added is the governance the time traveling families put in place to maintain checks and balances on their power. Bracken offers a different peek into history as we see bygone times and places through a modern girl’s eyes. The discrimination based on gender and race are hard for Etta to swallow, making us imagine what it would be like to witness past oppressions first-hand.
Despite the fact that it was a slow read for me, this is a good book that is worth your time if you want to give a story involving time travel a try! I will stay tuned for book two to see what’s next for Etta and Nicholas!
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