Passenger by Alexandra Bracken

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This was the first book #readwomen chose for the monthly book club. I’ve never read anything by the author before, and I wasn’t sure if I would like it because time-travel is really hit-or-miss for me. But seriously, how could I pass up such a gorgeous hardcover???

Rating: [4/5]

Synopsis: 

In one devastating night, violin prodigy Etta Spencer loses everything she knows and loves. Thrust into an unfamiliar world by a stranger with a dangerous agenda, Etta is certain of only one thing: she has traveled not just miles but years from home. And she’s inherited a legacy she knows nothing about from a family whose existence she’s never heard of. Until now.

Nicholas Carter is content with his life at sea, free from the Ironwoods—a powerful family in the colonies—and the servitude he’s known at their hands. But with the arrival of an unusual passenger on his ship comes the insistent pull of the past that he can’t escape and the family that won’t let him go so easily. Now the Ironwoods are searching for a stolen object of untold value, one they believe only Etta, Nicholas’ passenger, can find. In order to protect her, he must ensure she brings it back to them— whether she wants to or not.

Together, Etta and Nicholas embark on a perilous journey across centuries and continents, piecing together clues left behind by the traveler who will do anything to keep the object out of the Ironwoods’ grasp. But as they get closer to the truth of their search, and the deadly game the Ironwoods are play­ing, treacherous forces threaten to sep­arate Etta not only from Nicholas but from her path home . . . forever.

Likes: I really love the characters and how they interact with each other. Etta and Nicholas make such a great team. They both feel like real people and their interactions are so believable, despite the fact that they come from two very different times with very different social customs.

Speaking of which, I very much appreciated the way the author dealt with sexism and racism and still managed to be historically accurate. Too often, I read books that are overtly sexist and racist in an attempt to be historically accurate. In fact, I recently read a book for review that did this very thing and I did not finish it because these elements of “accuracy” made it genuinely unenjoyable. There is a way to handle these topics from a modern viewpoint without sacrificing historical accuracy, and this is how you do it! Take note, authors.

Dislikes: The pacing of the novel really did not work for me at times. Honestly, the only reason I kept reading was because I really loved the two main characters and I was interested in them, rather than in what was happening.

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