Saturday, May 6, 2017

WAYFARER BY ALEXANDRA BRACKEN - BOOK REVIEW

Hello everyone!

I am back with my review of the conclusion to the Passenger duology, Wayfarer by Alexandra Bracken.


It's been a while since I read/finished a duology. I feel like things got wrapped up in this book, but if there was a series to be made into a trilogy, I wouldn't mind it being this one.

This story picks up right where book one left off. I won't get into the plot because I don't want to spoil this or the last book but I will say that there are a lot of adventures in different places, the Vatican 1499, Petrograd 1919, Prague 1430, and Rio de Janeiro 1830, just to name a few. Like the first book, there is time travel to a bunch of these amazing locations and points in time.

Typically, I don't love historical fiction, but Bracken creates a sort of hybrid alternate reality/historical fiction that makes history interesting. There is one point where the characters have dinner with Tsar Nicholas II, and he's just a normal, down-to-earth guy. I found these little additions to history really interesting despite the fact that it was about history.

Like in the first book, Bracken does a great job of the time travel elements. Now that things are explained in depth from the first book, there was less explanation on how it was possible and more information on the story itself, which I think lent itself nicely to the flow of the story.

Also within this book were social issues and tensions of modern day. I don't remember if Bracken had any LGBT+ characters in the first book, but this one saw a lesbian couple. There was also still moments of racial tensions with Nicholas and Bracken addressed these in a positive manner. Gender and 'typical' gender roles are also addressed and like in the first book, Etta is depicted as a strong female character but one who still is able to show emotion when expected; a well-done balance of character.

I think this book was a good conclusion to the duology as a whole. Sometimes I find duologies suffer from second book syndrome, despite the fact that the second book is the final one, but I am happy to report that Bracken was able to avoid this issue. I think the pacing was well done, I found myself constantly engrossed, despite the length of this book. As a second book, I think Bracken did a good job of quickly recapping the important details of book one to help the reader get back into the story.

I would argue that this book had a little less adventure and mystery in it, mainly because there came a point where the goal of the characters was established and there was less time spent exploring like in the first book. Also, due to some circumstances that would spoil things, Etta and Nicholas are separated for most of the book and as such the romance element dwindles. It didn't drive this book as much as it had in the first book, I think, but I'm also not sure that's a bad thing.

I'm not sure I would say it is as good as the first book, but I still think it's a good book. The series as a whole is great, but there is just something this book was lacking that the other one had.

Overall, a great series but not my favourite of the two books.