Tuesday 30 January 2018

Book Club Picks #10 The Girl from Everywhere

Nix Song has lived aboard her father's ship, The Temptation for as long as she can remember. However, The Temptation is no ordinary ship. As long as Captain Slate has an accurate hand drawn map of the location and time he wishes to travel to, he can guide his ship there. Captain Slate's dreams lay in Hawaii in 1868, when Nix's mother was still alive. He is determined to go back and save her life with modern medicine. Nix however, has other plans. She loves her life aboard The Temptation, and is reluctant to give it up. There's also the risk that saving her mother will rewrite her whole history, causing her to lose everything. Nix must decide if she is willing to take the risk, or if she should leave her father behind.

 The Girl From Everywhere is the first book in a duology by Heidi Helig. It follows Nix, a girl who has spent her life on her father's ship, The Temptation, which Captain Slate is able to navigate through time and space. Basically this is what it would be like if the TARDIS was an awesome sailing ship instead of a police box. Captain Slate only needs two things to make this happen. An accurate and detailed map of the location, and the belief that it could exist. I was excited when I discovered it was possible to travel to fictional places too! The possibilities are endless, and if I was in Nix's position, I would constantly be creating my own worlds to travel to, along with commissioning JK Rowling to draw me a detailed map of Hogwarts. You can probably imagine my disappointment when I discovered that the majority of the book takes place in one location, and it's not even a fictional one!

Although this was the biggest disappointment in the book for me, I did actually love the location. The majority of the book is set in Honolulu in 1884, and it is a beautiful location. I adored Heidi's gorgeous descriptions, and it made me wish that I could visit Honolulu before it became the huge city that it is today. I loved that everything was historically accurate, as I pretty much knew nothing about the history of Honolulu before reading this book, so I loved that I was constantly learning. There were several times when I stopped reading to research more on a certain subject, particularly on the subject of the monarchy. As Heidi grew up in Hawaii, she was aware of local legends from her childhood, and I loved how she incorporated them into the book, particuarly the Hu'akai Po.

I felt as if I wasn't interested enough in the characters themselves, particularly Nix. She seemed a little two dimensional to me, and I just couldn't make myself become emotionally invested in her. I felt the same way about Blake, and felt as if his main purpose was to be a barrier between a romantic relationship happening between Nix and Kashmir, essentially creating an unnecessary love triangle. Although I loved that Blake was full of local legends, and showed up to save the day, I felt as if he was mostly there to give Nix and the reader information that would later be important to the plot. Blake was pretty much a background character, like the NPC in a video game that conveniently appears to guide the player in the right direction, only to fade back into the background. Everything that Blake did seemed to be for Nix's benefit, and he seemed more like a catalyst than a character.

The one character that I did actually like was Kashmir, and I was happy that he was central to the plot. I was worried that his main role would be to act as the love interest, so I was happy that there was more to him than that. I loved how kind he was, and that he was extremely loyal to Nix and Captain Slate. However, I did roll my eyes over the typical hostility between Kash and Blake, as it's such a cliché for the two men to hate each other in a love triangle. Although I didn't care much for the majority of the characters, I did love that they were wonderfully diverse, and I particularly loved that one of the female crew members had a wife.

The plot overall was a little too slow for me. I initially thought I was going to love it, as they travelled from 1774 India to 2016 New York, and then onto 1884 Honolulu in a short space of time. As the book is marketed as time travel, I expected the book to go on as it started, so I became a little bored towards the middle, as all that seemed to be happening was planning on how to rob the treasurey. I did however love when they travelled to a fictional version of China, as this was the only time we personally experienced something like this, rather than Nix just telling us about something that had happened in the past. Although I loved this part, I was also extremely confused in regards to Joss, the woman who had given Nix the map. I feel as if I didn't understand something shomewhere, and I got extremely confused over her timeline. I'm not sure if this was just me being stupid, or if it just wasn't explained well enough.

Although I did enjoy various parts of the book, I unfortunately didn't enjoy it as a whole as much as I thought I would. I am interested in Nix's story enough to read the sequel, but I think I will take a little break and read some other books before I jump back into Nix's world. I think that in order for me to enjoy the sequel more than I enjoyed this one, there would have to be character development, a more action packed plot, and a lot more time travel

The Girl from Everywhere is now available to purchase!

  | Amazon Book Depository

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