Sunday, January 18, 2015

REVIEW: The Sun, the Moon and Maybe the Trains

The Sun, the Moon & Maybe the Trains
Rodney Jones

Genre: Young Adult, Time Travel
Publisher: Red Adept Publishing
Publication date: 9.28.2012
Pages: 252

Recommended by: Red Adept Publishing, Read 2 Review
Date read: 1.17.2015

Summary: John Bartley's days are filled with working in the mill or the garden, and he can't wait to see Zella at the next barn dance.  But when he stumbles through a hidden portal in the forest, everything he's ever known falls behind him.
            A hundred and thirty-four years behind, to be exact.
            Tess can't quite believe John's tale of time travel.  Does he really not know what a cell phone is?  A car?  Indoor plumbing?  To convince the girl he's swiftly falling for that he's not crazy, John must delve into Tess's history - his future - and solve the mystery of his hometown's demise.
            But when they learn it's fate, each faces a wrenching choice.  Save their love or save their past?

I find time travel books to be fun reads, so when Red Adept Publishing sent this my way, I was excited to give it a try.  

It is a little slow starting out, but once John finds himself in the future, things pick up and the story becomes a lot more interesting.  I love how the title of the novel is actually found in the story - I always like seeing an author bring the two together.

My favorite part of the story is when they first meet.  Even though she's not sure about him, she's very kind and understanding.  We learn a lot about the two of them (their personalities, how they treat others, etc) during this conversation and it made me really like both characters.

I did have a few issues with the book, though.  

I find first person writing to be either a hit or miss with me.  It often sounds like someone is writing in a journal or telling a rather long story to someone, sometimes feeling a bit tedious and forced, and this is how I felt while reading this novel.  The author does a good job, don't get me wrong, and maybe it's just me, but I had quite a few "eh..." moments where I got a little bored learning about things that I didn't exactly think mattered, especially at the beginning of the story.

I like Young Adult books, but this felt more like Middle School or High School.  There were times that both characters felt very young and immature, which I can understand from John, considering he knows nothing about this time period and he has a lot to learn, but she wasn't new to this.

There were questions that I wanted answered (i.e. the portal, how it came there, why it was there) that didn't get answered, which was disappointing.  (Maybe this will be answered in book two.  I'll be beginning that in a few days, so we'll see.)

I didn't like the ending.  I won't go into detail because I don't want to ruin it for potential readers, but if I didn't know about book 2, I would be really sad and disappointed.  

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