Saturday, November 9, 2013

Review: All Our Yesterdays by Cristin Terrill

All Our Yesterdays by Cristin Terrill
Published:  September 3, 2013
Disney Hyperion
368 (Hardcover)
My Rating:
5 of 5 stars 

What would you change?

Imprisoned in the heart of a secret military base, Em has nothing except the voice of the boy in the cell next door and the list of instructions she finds taped inside the drain.

Only Em can complete the final instruction. She’s tried everything to prevent the creation of a time machine that will tear the world apart. She holds the proof: a list she has never seen before, written in her own hand. Each failed attempt in the past has led her to the same terrible present—imprisoned and tortured by a sadistic man called the doctor while war rages outside.

Marina has loved her best friend James since the day he moved next door when they were children. A gorgeous, introverted science prodigy from one of America’s most famous families, James finally seems to be seeing Marina in a new way, too. But on one disastrous night, James’s life crumbles apart, and with it, Marina’s hopes for their future. Now someone is trying to kill him. Marina will protect James, no matter what. Even if it means opening her eyes to a truth so terrible that she may not survive it. At least not as the girl she once was.

All Our Yesterdays is a wrenching, brilliantly plotted story of fierce love, unthinkable sacrifice, and the infinite implications of our every choice.

This is the book I've been waiting for. Time travel is such an interesting thing and I love reading about how different people imagine it working. The reason I was so excited about this book was because I knew it had time travel, but it was also the reason I was a bit worried about it. Time travel can be a bit confusing even if there is an explanation for it.

The book switched between Em and Marina's POV. Em's world is a future destroyed by the invention of the time machine aka Cassandra and Marina is from the present. It was obvious to me from the beginning how the two characters were connected, especially when Em refused to say the doctor's name and the name of Marina's friend was revealed, but I'm not going to say any more about that. At some points it was difficult to tell the difference between Em and Marina's POV especially at the end, mostly because there were so many characters from the future and the past mixing together. Aside from that, I really enjoyed both of the girl's stories. Em's was a bit more intriguing because her story contains more action than Marina's and in the beginning Marina is very shallow and kind of boring. All Marina ever thinks about in the beginning is how much she loves James, but as the story progressed I warmed up to her because there was more to her than I originally thought.

There is a very complicated love story woven into this book and I'm tempted to call it a love triangle, but that's not exactly correct (and if I tried to explain the love triangle I would end up spoiling some parts so I'm going to stay away from calling it that). The story starts out with Marina already in love with James (her best friend). Normally this would make their relationship less appealing, but the flashbacks to times Marina was with James and the obvious fact that she knew him better than most people allowed me to go along with their relationship. Em and Finn's relationship seemed like that at first, but its clear after awhile that they don't suffer from insta love and that their relationship developed over time. I ended up preferring Em and Finn over Marina and James mainly because Finn is so adorable and sometimes James seemed to be toying with Marina's emotions.

The explanation for time travel was quick so it didn't feel like the author was info dumping and it wasn't overly complicated. The explanation was reminiscent of the one given in the TV show Doctor Who and I don't want to ruin the explanation for anyone because I think it was brilliantly executed so I'm not going to say any more about it.

All Our Yesterdays is definitely one of my favorite books now and I'm going to be looking for more books by this author in the future.

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