Thursday 17 April 2014

Book ~ "The Fire" (2013) John A. Heldt

From Goodreads ~ When Kevin Johnson, 22, goes to Wallace, Idaho, days after his college graduation, he expects to find rest and relaxation as his family prepares his deceased grandfather's house for sale. Then he discovers a hidden diary and a time portal that can take him to 1910, the year of Halley's comet and the largest wildfire in U.S. history. 

Within hours, Kevin finds himself in the era of horse-drawn wagons, straw hats and ankle-length dresses. Returning to the same time and place, he decides to travel again and again and make the portal his gateway to summer fun. 

The adventure takes a more serious turn, however, when the luckless-in-love science major falls for pretty English teacher, Sarah Thompson, and integrates himself in a community headed for tragedy. 

Filled with humor, romance, and heartbreak, "The Fire", the sequel to "The Journey", follows a conflicted soul through a life-changing journey as he makes his mark on a world he was never meant to see.

It's June 2013 and Kevin has just graduated from university.  He and his family head to Wallace, ID, to clean up his late grandfather's house to sell it.  When his parents and sister go away for a couple days, Kevin finds a diary, old coins and diamonds in a secret hiding place under the floor.  Kevin reads the diary and realizes that his ancestor, Asa, who had owned the house, was a time traveler and the portal is in the backyard.  On a lark, Kevin checks it out and discovers he has sent himself back to July 1910.  Though he spends a couple hours in 1910, when he heads back to 2013, he discovers that he has only been gone a couple seconds.

Intrigued he decides to go back to 1910 and stay longer and packs for the trip taking the coins he has found, a suit from that time period, etc.  Going back in time, he can determine which year he wants to go back to but not when within the year.  This time he arrives earlier in the year.  He finds a place to live, gets a job, makes friends and meets and falls in love.

Obviously he knows about things that will happen in the future ... the world wars, Haley's Comet, the sinking of the Titanic, but most importantly, the fire that will destroy the town later that summer.  His dilemma is whether to use this knowledge to save the town and its people (who are now his friends) or let nature take its course and let it happen.

This is the fifth book I've read by this author and I liked it.  I like reading time travel books when people go back in time ... in this book, Kevin was able to go back and forth to 1910 when he wanted.  Regardless of how much time he spent in 1910 (days, weeks, etc.), when he went back to 2013, he had only been gone a few seconds.

It is written in third person perspective with most of the focus on Kevin.  Unlike the other books by this author that I've read and enjoyed, I found this one could have been a bit tighter ... it seemed a bit long in places and I just wanted to get on with the story.

Kevin adapted to 1910 well but it was funny when he slipped up and used language from the 21st century (like "dude").  He was quite attracted to two women he met and had to remind himself that 1910 was a more "proper" time than 2013.  It was a different time to be a woman ... we still didn't have the right to vote and once we got married, we had to give up our jobs to become wives and mothers.

I wasn't crazy about the ending ... from the time to fire started to when the book ended.  I like having happy endings and was glad that this book had one but I had a hard time buying it.

I received a copy of this ebook at no charge from the author in exchange for my honest review. 

1 comment:

Masshole Mommy said...

This sounds like a fun book.