Thursday, April 10, 2014

Book Review: Echo in Time by C.J. Hill (Whitney Finalist 2013)

Title: Echo in Time (Erasing Time #2)
Author: C.J. Hill
Enjoyment Rating: ***
Source: Digital Copy
This book would be rated: PG-13 for violence

The sequel to Erasing Time, Echo in Time follows the saga of two sets of twins-- Taylor and Sheridan, sisters who have time jumped from the 21st century to the 25th, and Joseph and Echo, 25th century brothers who were separated when Echo died in an attach several months earlier.  When Taylor and Joseph are sent on a mission to destroy the Time Strainer, Taylor just wants to hurry up and get back to adjusting to her new life, but Joseph wants to restore Echo's life. When he succeeds, he finds that one small difference in the fabric of time can change lots of things, and the existence of the entire group falls into peril.

I've decided that what makes an enjoyable sequel for fans of a first novel is entirely different from what makes a book an award-winner. My guess is that C.J. Hill did a lot of character building in her first novel-- fans of the book know who the characters are (what their desires and motivations are), and now they want them to do something. But contest judges have to look at the novels in isolation, and what I see here is a lot of exciting action, a strong finish, an exciting conclusion, and bad guys with laser boxes around every corner, but what I don't see much of is what I like best in novels-- the character development. This is one of those second novels where I feel like I've been thrown into the water to swim without a life preserver, and I flounder around a bit before I find my footing.

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