Title: Now, Then, and Everywhen
Author: Rysa Walker
Publication Date: April 1, 2020
Synopsis from Goodreads:
In 2136 Madison Grace uncovers a key to the origins of CHRONOS, a time-travel agency with ties to her family’s mysterious past. Just as she is starting to jump through history, she returns to her timeline to find millions of lives erased—and only the people inside her house realize anything has changed. In 2304 CHRONOS historian Tyson Reyes is assigned to observe the crucial events that played out in America’s civil rights movement. But a massive time shift occurs while he’s in 1965, and suddenly the history he sees isn’t the history he knows. As Madi’s and Tyson’s journeys collide, they must prevent the past from being erased forever.
I’m always excited to discover a new book that explores time travel in a new way. In Walker’s speculative novel, the risks and dangers of time travel are highlighted in a new and unique way. Instead of ignoring the difficulties as so many novels do, Walker chooses to confront them head on in a way that often has dire consequences for the characters. Madi and Tyson are two travelers from to very different places in time, but their stories are connected beyond their own comprehension.
Tyson is trained as an historian. In his time, this means that his main purpose being to travel back in time to gain a first-hand account of history while making as little impact as possible. Madi is also an historian, but in her time, that means something more akin to what we know historians to be, that is, until she discovers a book with her name on the cover that isn’t set to be written for a few more decades and a mysterious device unearthed from her family garden. Suddenly, Madi is able to smoothly move backwards and forwards in time, but at what cost? The discovery of some old family journals and a digital record of changes and anomalies in time signifies that something huge has happened and has altered the course of history in unimaginable ways, wiping out a good portion of the population. Time begins to race as Madi and Tyson work to solve this mysterious change and return history to as close to normal as they can.
This book is told in a non-linear fashion. Time moves in mysterious ways. It was a little tough to get used to the style in the beginning, but one it clicked, the novel really picked up. I enjoyed that Walker doesn’t hand the reader all of the information up front. You have to be patient, waiting for it all to be revealed and for the stories to tie together. There is plenty of time to come to know both protagonists well and to understand their worlds.
From what I understand, this book is a part of a greater series, and it’s definitely piqued my interest. After reading Now, Then, and Everywhen I’ll definitely be checking out the other books to fully get to know this world.