I wonder if there’s ANY supernatural element that hasn’t been covered in Young Adult in the wake of Twilight’s popularity… there have been mindreaders, angels, consorts to Greek gods, vampires who are really angels, magicians, citizens of the lost city of Atlantis, more angels… and now there’s time travelers. However, I was really sucked in by the ad copy that promises past-life experiences. I thought immediately of L.J. Smith’s Night World: Soulmates, which may be my favorite Night World book.
THE PLOT: Jenny is kind of a social outcast. What people don’t know about her “weirdness” is that she can read people’s past lives through touching them (so, shockingly, she goes out of her way to avoid touching people). When she receives a freaky message through a ouija board, though, Jenny’s powers seem to kick in greater than ever. She meets a boy named Ben who seems standoffish at first, but in his attic, he and Jenny find a music box that contains instructions for putting people in a trance. Jenny and Ben realize they share a past history with Nikolai, a young man in their shared dream, who lived around 1917. Oh, and Jenny was one of the Romanov princesses…not Anastasia, thankfully; she was Grand Duchess Maria. But then Jenny realizes Nikolai is hanging around in the present, and how is that possible???
MY TWO CENTS: I really liked this book until about halfway through, when it started to slow down a bit. At first, even the writing reminded me of L.J. Smith’s (before her writing hiatus). It was very straightforward and yet painted a very clear picture without too much description. I did get a little disappointed in the second half. I enjoy both Romanov-related history and reincarnation stories, but I just wanted a little more from the book.
BOTTOM LINE: It’s definitely worth giving this book a read if the subject matter appeals to you. I do hope the romance heats up a little, though. I was more interested in the friendship between Jenny and Ben than the “timeless love” of Jenny and Nikolai.
TEACUP RATING: I give this book three-and-a-half teacups. The first half was much more interesting to me than the second, so I have hopes for the obvious sequel…which I’ll be happy to read.
ON SALE DATE: The book is avilable as of today, October 8, 2013.
Note: Review is based on an ARC provided by the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.