Every so often, I just need to read something that's light, fun and fresh. Karen Akins' debut book Loop was the perfect fit.
Bree Brennis lives in the future. But she visits the past quite often. You see, she's a shifter - someone able to travel back in time. On a midterm assignment to the past she kinda blows it - she doesn't complete her assignment. - and somehow manages to, well not quite...take a boy named Finn hostage. And the little side deal she was supposed to deliver? Well, she messes that up too. So, she heads back to the past a second time to fix the mistakes - and misses the mark by three years. But she finds Finn again. And discovers that her future self has been back before. Finn is all grown up (!) and apparently has sworn to Future Bree to protect this Bree. So, he hangs on tight when Bree shifts back to the future...where things just aren't right....
Time travel books are fun because there are no rules - the author is free to make them up. Akins has a great imagination - her future gadgets are fun. (Flying pet cows anyone?!) Finn's happiness at finding out light sabres and the Jetson's flying people pods are real had me laughing. As did much of the book. Loop is written with humour, in both dialogue and situations.
And being a YA novel, of course there's a romantic storyline included. But I enjoyed the way Akins wrote it - it wasn't over the top with smoldering, longing gazes but was again written with humour.
The book is written from Bree's POV. I liked her a lot as a main character - she's feisty, funny and fallible. Finn was written just as well. They played off each other well.
The plotting had me circling back more than once, just to keep straight who knew what in the past - or was it the future? A little complicated, as were some of the 'science' explanations. I found myself glossing over some of these just to get back to the story. The push me, pull me between Bree and Finn was dragged out a tad too much. But overall this was a entertaining read and a good debut and the scene is set for the next adventure. Read the first chapter of Loop. This is the first of a planned series,with the second book, Twist, due out in March 2015.
"Karen Akins lives in the MidSouth where she writes humorous, light YA sci-fi. When not writing or reading, she loves lightsaber dueling with her two sons and forcing her husband to watch BBC shows with her." You can keep up with Karen Akins on Twitter.
Sound like a fun read to you? Well, thanks to St. Martin's Press, I have a copy to giveaway to a random reader. Simply leave a comment to be entered. Open to US only, no PO boxes please. Ends November 8/14.