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Paradox Bound: A Novel Hardcover – September 26, 2017
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“Lively, likeable, and wonderfully amusing.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review)
“A fun, almost sweet sci-fi thriller...[our heroes] visit different periods of American history and continue to narrowly escape danger, all while exchanging sassy comebacks. For fans of Ernest Cline.”—Booklist
“Always entertaining. . . . the action is swift and the faceless agents suitably chilling.”—Library Journal
“One cool novel. It has time travel and murders and faceless villains (I mean that literally) and I have a crush on the heroine. If the Tardis were a Model A Ford, this might be Doctor Who meets National Treasure.”—F. Paul Wilson, New York Times bestselling author of the Repairman Jack series
“A fast and resonant time-travel thriller and tour of America, bursting with fun ideas.”—Django Wexler, author of the Shadow Campaigns novels
“So good you'll want to invent time travel and send a copy back to yourself, just so you can read it again for the first time. A tour de force.”—Jason M. Hough, New York Times bestselling author of The Darwin Elevator
About the Author
- Item Weight : 1.35 pounds
- Hardcover : 384 pages
- ISBN-10 : 0553418335
- ISBN-13 : 978-0553418330
- Dimensions : 6.5 x 1.3 x 9.5 inches
- Publisher : Crown (September 26, 2017)
- Language: : English
- Best Sellers Rank: #573,915 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
- Customer Reviews:
Top reviews from the United States
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I recommend avoiding reading anything but the official description, but if you can skip that too, so much the better. Thus, I've included nothing of that in my review. I find that the less you know, the more enjoyable the tales become and that was certainly true here with "PB".
Finally, I want to note that I've read these books together with my 14-year old son (his mother and I have been reading to him all kinds of stories every night since he was an infant) and he's also a huge fan of everything we've seen so far from Mr. Clines -- though note that I'm not necessarily recommending this for young teens as I've had to omit some minor language and brief descriptions of violence along the way.
If you pick this up for yourself, I hope you enjoy it as much as we did!
I will give Clines props on his imagination. He did give the whole idea of how people time traveled and why a brand new spin. This is a bit like a mash up of National Treasure/Back to the Future with Matrixx elements. I did like the idea of all of it for the most part.
***“So the whole American Revolution happened because of an Egyptian god?”
“Such a silly idea, I know,” said Harry. “If it was true, there’d be giant obelisks in the nation’s capital, pyramids on the currency, noticeable things like that.”***
While I really enjoy most of Clines works because of the way he weaves pop culture and humor into a story that has elements that always remind me a little of the Twilight Zone and anything JJ Abrams has done this one missed the mark for me just a little.
Mostly it has to do with the Time Travel. I’m already not a huge fan of that idea but then the rest was a lot to do with cars and history. I don’t mind either but it was just missing some of the pop that I really enjoyed from his other books.
Still it isn’t a bad story, for the most part I enjoyed a lot of it. There is Eli who lives in a town that pretty much is stuck in the 80s. Harry or Harriette has shown up in his life a few times throughout the years and it has made an impression on him. So much that he is just sure that the next time she blows into town he’ll run off with her. So he waits…and waits…and waits. It doesn’t go quite like he expected. It didn’t go like I expected either but eventually we all end up on the road.
***What little Eli knew about being on the run was from half-remembered movies and less-remembered childhood novels about teen investigators. He didn’t think either source could be thought of as reliable. He also didn’t have much else to go on.***
There are some great moments in this book. I loved the idea of the town Hourglass. I sort of time travelers resort that you can only go to 3 times in your life because while you are at one bar in the town another you is just down the street at a different bar.
Also winning are the bad guy singular and the bad guys plural. The faceless men are all very strange and creepy. In a small way they completely reminded me of the Agents in the Matrixx. Some parts of this were so strange and unique that Clines again gets mad props for being so creative.
The biggest draw back to the story is that some of the stuff is just breezed over. Specifically how time travel works. I mean yes to some extent just because you ride in a plane doesn’t mean that you understand the physics of the plane to explain to someone else but I still wanted someone in this book to understand it and explain it a little to me. My last super small complaint was the lack of romance, I wanted a little more of that for our two MCs although I'm not even sure if I wanted it between the two MCs.
Not my favorite of Clines works. If you have never read him I’d totally suggest reading 14 or Ex-Heroes as both are a lot of fun. Still if you like history and classic cars then this could be your favorite of his stories.
Audio Note: Ray Porter did a great job narrating this book. He is one of my favorite narrators and his voice is a pleasure to listen to.
Clines once again skilfully crafts a protagonist with both strengths and flaws and let's us into the inner workings of what our protagonist is thinking.
In addition to the typical post-modern questioning by his protagonist that Clines presents so well, he also uses Paradox Bound as a way to stretch himself and explore some new themes, such as the current political climate in America, what it means to be an American, and what the American dream entails.
There is a lot to recommend in Paradox Bound and fans of Clines or witty sci-fi should definitely check it out.
The Audiobook narrated by Ray Porter was an added joy. Ray seems to read Mr. Clines thoughts as he performs the novel. They are not a new combination and Ray can often be heard narrating Peter Clines novels. There is a magic there that keeps your ear and mind stuck to the story and draws you in deeper. Ray, as a narrator, sets some high standards for others out there. He has developed the characters sounds to the point of being unique (such as the Faceless Men).