All Our Yesterdays by Cristin Terrill
Publisher: Bloomsbury Childrens
Publication date: August 1st, 2013
Number of pages: 362 pgs
Purchase: Amazon | The Book Depository
Em is locked in a bare, cold cell with no comforts. Finn is in the cell next door. The Doctor is keeping them there until they tell him what he wants to know. Trouble is, what he wants to know hasn't happened yet.
Em and Finn have a shared past, but no future unless they can find a way out. The present is torture - being kept apart, overhearing each other's anguish as the Doctor relentlessly seeks answers. There's no way back from here, to what they used to be, the world they used to know. Then Em finds a note in her cell which changes everything. It's from her future self and contains some simple but very clear instructions. Em must travel back in time to avert a tragedy that's about to unfold. Worse, she has to pursue and kill the boy she loves to change the future.
Cristin Terrill's debut novel is nothing if not outstanding. It bridges the lines of dystopia, sci fi and time travel. It begins with a girl and a list.
The list is something not to think unimportant because it is very significant, more than you may know.
There are many themes that this novel consists of. From romance to friendship to assassination attempts and war. From love to hate. To many timelines. To making things right.
It all begins with Em and Finn, who are are in joined cells together. In the past, Marina lives next door to her best friend, James, who is as smart as a scientist. James, who she loves. A time machine named Cassandra is what connects Em and Marina. The present and the past. What has done and what needs to be done.
After Em discovers a list in a drain in her cell, with things crossed off the list minus one remaining sentence. In her own handwriting. Em understands it's the only thing that can work and she needs to obey.
If not, then Em and Finn will most likely end up dead sooner or later. There is no time to waste.
This story is narrated by both Em and Marina explaining their stories, and how they connect to one another. How one comes to be the other.
This is a complicated story of time travel, what one may do to save your future and the lines blurred to how someone was, to who they may or may not become.
Cristin does a great job at showing how both Marina and Em came to be in the positions they find themselves in. How the relationships between Em and Finn, Marina, Finn and James, and Em and the doctor are. What exactly is it between these characters and what does it mean for the overall plot.
You could say this story is definitely driven by plot, but with the narratives, you can understand Marina and Em, their reasons for the things they do, and how each of them end up the way they do by the end of the story. Marina in particular got on my nerves from time to time, but as I went through the story, I began to understand what she had to go through to become the person she had to be.
I absolutely loved the romance portrayed in this book. I admit though, I at first was a tad hesitant to read this book because after reading the blurb, I was a little confused and wasn't sure if I would like it. After hearing a friend of mine that she loved it, I took the chance and bought the book for myself. I'm glad I did because I would never had the pleasure of discovering such a unique and fascinating story, with compelling characters who I adored. It was an addicting story and I can't wait to see what comes next.
I thought there was going to be some sort of triangle between Em, Finn and James, but how it turns out, once I understood the scope of what was going on, I could not have been more wrong, and I was thankful. The love story is something that spans lifetimes. It was beautifully written, so natural and honest.