Last but not least, here's my review for David's Backward Glass.
I generally don't read YA, but I was deeply impressed with this book. It's spooky, creepy, and a stunner of a debut novel.
Paperback, 315 pages
Published October 8th 2013 by Flux
Format read: E-ARC via publisher
So when I saw Backward Glass on NetGalley and read the description, I was intrigued. The idea of a teen, literally racing against the clock through time was too cool to pass up.
I requested the arc and fortunately for me, Flux granted my request!
Synopsis via Goodreads:
It's 1977, and Kenny Maxwell is dreading the move away from his friends. But then, behind the walls of his family's new falling-apart Victorian home, he finds something incredible--a mummified baby and a note: "Help me make it not happen, Kenny. Help me stop him."
Shortly afterwards, a beautiful girl named Luka shows up. She introduces Kenny to the backward glass, a mirror that allows them to travel through time. Meeting other "mirror kids" in the past and future is exciting, but there's also danger. The urban legend of Prince Harming, who kidnaps and kills children, is true--and he's hunting them. When Kenny gets stranded in the past, he must find the courage to answer a call for help, change the fate of a baby--and confront his own destiny.
Things that worked:
Lomax absolutely nails down the teenaged voice with Kenny. He's smart, curious, snarky, and brave.
(Because honestly, if I experienced some of the things that Kenny experienced, I probably would have run away screaming or curled up in a corner, and become a gibberish mess.)
There is a whole host of secondary characters too, who are intriguing, beautifully written and smart in their own right. They aren't perfect, but that's the beauty of David's world. He's populated his story with characters that I think will have readers speculating for hours.
* The world-building
The heart of Backward Glass is the strength and unique nature of the story.
Without giving any spoilers away, I've read quite a few time travel stories in my time, and I don't think I've ever quite read anything like this.
There are certain rules to the world-building that are so detailed, you can almost see David Lomax with notecards/post-its, organizing his world. This is a world that you will be able to envision, and be able to guess at what the characters could possibly be doing, long after you're done reading.
* The plotting
This is one of those books where you go into the story not really knowing what to expect, and you get bombshells that will both delight you, and pull you through the story.
I spent the first 90% of the book frantically hitting my kindle screen, and then I spent the last 10% of the book almost not wanting to look, because well... you'll have to read it to find out.
* The ending
It's ridiculously satisfying, and leaves room for a sequel. (Or two).
Things that didn't work/Things to consider:
However, I'm going to chalk this up to the fact that I've gotten a bit lax with assuming time travel in fiction works a certain way, and I probably just needed to reread the explanation.
(And if he does write a sequel, I will definitely be back!)
I highly recommend this book for anyone who enjoys science fiction, but also for people who are just looking for something different and unique, in general.
Disclaimer: I received an e-arc from Flux via NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!
About the author:
David is the author of Backward Glass, a young-adult science fiction novel set in Toronto. It’s out this fall from Flux books, but is currently available for pre-order fromt Amazon.ca, Amazon.com, Amazon.co.uk, and Chapters.