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Stolen Time

Review

Stolen Time

Dorothy is supposed to get married. Her mother found the perfect man --- rich --- for them to con into marrying Dorothy. But she doesn’t want to marry the surgeon and end up constantly controlled by him or her mother. So she runs. While trying to escape her mother and future husband, she stumbles upon what she assumes is a plane. Finding a plane in 1913 is already strange enough, but right as she is trying to flee her wedding? The timing seems perfect. Despite the cranky and dismissive pilot, Dorothy manages to sneak on the back and travel wherever it leads.

Meanwhile, teenage Ash just wants to find the Professor. As the creator of the first time machine and assembly of the Chronology Protection Agency, made up of the best and brightest young minds from through time, the Professor is a pretty important guy to just go missing. So when Ash doesn’t find him in 1913, he is understandably upset. What shocks him even more is returning home to 2077 to find that the girl in the wedding dress he met in the woods tagged along for the ride on his time ship.

"I could not put STOLEN TIME down. From nail-biting encounters through time to haunting visions of the future, each page pulled me in more in more."

After being thrown into the same time, Ash and Dorothy are forced to work together along with the rest of his team to somehow save the Professor from wherever he escaped to. At the same time, Ash is haunted by pre-memories of his mysterious death. Dorothy and Ash play an important role in the future so no matter what happens --- time must go on.

All I can say upon finishing this book is it was amazing. Rollins creates a version of our future that is darkly realistic. She doesn’t include the classic technology dominated future we have come to expect in our science fiction or other futuristic stories --- hers seems frighteningly near. Seattle of the future is destroyed by earthquakes and tsunamis caused by climate change and overall environmental disaster. The remains of the city are then ruled by a rebel group who want access to technology that they believe should not be just contained in the hands of the elite. This future is not glossed over or magical --- it is real, and that makes it even scarier.

Furthermore, Rollins does an excellent job in crafting her version of how time travel works. Time travel is of a constant intrigue to scientists and for good reason. She strikes the perfect balance of quenching my curiosity on how this time travel works and not drowning the reader in scientific facts and information. She also touches on the idea of fate, and if we can travel back in time and certain things are set, do we have any free will at all? These ideas are woven into the character's thoughts and fears in a natural way that makes me start to question it as well.

Once I started, I could not put STOLEN TIME down. From nail-biting encounters through time to haunting visions of the future, each page pulled me in more in more. What was even more compelling was the characters. Upon picking the book up, I didn't expect much. But I definitely didn’t expect the main character to be a con artist from 1913 who specializes in lying and picking locks. Her desire to be in control of her fate combined with her unique talents makes a character that was fascinating to read.

Time travel novels are not uncommon, but it takes a special something to write one as good as STOLEN TIME. Between paradoxes and loops, history being preset or malleable, Dorothy must face problems she never even imagined were possible. As the team searches through time for the Professor she is forced to face the truth of what her future might mean for the history of the world.

Reviewed by Caitlyn K., Teen Board Member on February 13, 2019

Stolen Time
by Danielle Rollins