Katie MacAlister has long been one of my favorite authors – she’s fun and quirky, and can make some of the most ridiculous situations seem perfectly plausible. Unfortunately, the writing in this particular novel was not as consistent as I was expecting. There were several times where I literally blanked on what I had just read. That being said, the novel was definitely still fun and enjoyable.
Kiya Mortenson is in a bit of a bind. Currently without a job, with a dying car, and with no prospects on fixing either problem any time soon, Kiya is wondering where to go from here. Oh, and she needs to make sure that getting hit by lightning again didn’t do any damage. When her car breaks down (for what is not the first and definitely not the last time), she lucks out with not only car help from a passerby (Gregory), but also a job lined up from the good samaritan’s grandmother. Of course, his grandmother (and the family) are a bit odd – Gregory’s uncles and cousins do little more than sneer at her, and the women in the family practically grab their children and run away if she gets too close.
Turns out that the family are Travellers – like gypsies, but paranormal – and get their name from both their nomadic heritage and their abilities with time. Yes, as in time travelers. Travelers can take time from someone (they have to pay for it in silver, otherwise there can be some pretty dire consequences from the spirits), and the strongest, if they take enough, can actually travel through time. And apparently deja vu is someone stealing your time (or a glitch in the Matrix. But we’re sticking with the time story for this one).
But there is more going on than just stealing time – someone is killing people, and Peter Faa, a member of the Watch, basically a police force for the supernatural, is on his trail. Peter, and his spirit sidekick Sunil, know that Travellers are involved. But he doesn’t know how deep Kiya is in this whole mess, and he’s starting to wonder if he even cares.
Kiya is an offbeat character – how many people you know talk constantly about the inner battles of their id, ego, and superego? She’s a little like that crazy friend everyone has – a great person with a serious case of verbal diarrhea. And since most of the story is told solely from her point a view, we get mostly her mental monologues. Which is interesting, but got a bit tiring after a while. Kiya gets a bit rambly, and that’s where I lost focus a couple of times as a reader. Peter is pretty stuffy in the beginning – he comes across as angry and cold – but warms up as time goes on, which helps with the romance part of the story.
There is a lot of old versus new going on with the characters, and some fun little details (the pugs! oh the pugs!) that made the background of the story a lot more interesting. The romance was a little boring with everything else going on, but the characters were interesting and the plot kept things moving along at a nice clip.
The romance was second to the suspense and the description of the paranormal in this world (actually, the author included appendices on both the Traveller society and a few of their words). It worked overall, but I hope that the romance is stronger in the next books, because I definitely want to read more of this series. The next book is due out in September, and is about the lovely Gregory (good samaritan), so I have high hopes!
So basically, if you are looking for a sweeping romance, something serious with lots of drama, don’t pick this one up. If you are looking for something fun? Go for it.