Rewinder by Brett Battles is a mind-bending story of alternate history and time travel, and a quick read. I normally avoid time travel stories like plague ridden hookers, but the blurb for this one caught my attention. I found the story to be intriguing at first, but near the end it began to wane and reading the last quarter of the book felt like a chore, half because of the strange writing style (the book is written in present tense) and half because of the forced-feeling love story. Ultimately, with a plot that starts out strong but ends with a fizzle and a bad love story, I probably wouldn’t recommend this book to anyone who wasn’t a already a fan of the time travel fiction genre.
- I normally don’t enjoy time travel stuff. I like the fictional parts of my stories to still be governed by rules and boundaries, and more often than not time travel spits in the face of rules and boundaries. Despite these feelings, I found the story to be enjoyable.
- I found the concepts that drove the story to be intriguing.
- I did come across a few editorial mistakes, but overall the writing, grammar, and style of the story are done well enough that none of them distracted me from the story itself.
- Around 75 percent, the book really began to drag for me and never quite recovered. At this point you’re deep into the book’s love story element and I found it to be boring and centered around a tired and cliched conflict.
- The “love” story that takes place in the book came off as trite to me. It offered me nothing new and felt like it was shoehorned into the book in order to give the characters of the story their motivation.
- The book is written in present tense, which makes for a bit of a jarring, but acceptable, read. I believe this was done specifically because the book is about time travel, and in order for the story to make sense the reader needs to follow one specific time line (And that is why this is in The Meh rather than The Bad).
- The plot of the book and way it plays out came off as a little fantastic, but that’s why I don’t really like time travel novels. There’s just too much room for “illogical” insanity that I can’t even begin to comprehend.
Denny Younger has lead a rough life as an 8, one of society’s lowest castes. His mother always told him work and study hard, and he could earn a better life. After his mother passes away, Denny is driven to prove her right and throws himself into his studies of history and proves her right. When the representatives from the Upjohn institute come and offer him a mysterious position that will require him to leave his life as an 8 behind, Denny is quick to accept. Soon Denny finds himself working as a Rewinder, a position he never thought possible. His job is to travel back in time and physically verify family histories for the institutes higher castes. He must remember that one tiny change in a world’s history can cause ripples that form massive waves of change in its future.