Author: Cristin Terrill
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
Date: August 2013
Source: ARC from publisher
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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.
When time travel is done right, it is phenomenal and Cristin Terrill got it absolutely spot on with her sci-fi, time bending debut! All Our Yesterdays had me hooked from the start and took me on a heart-pounding, fast-paced dystopian adventure. I haven’t cared for characters’ survival this much since The Hunger Games—Em and Finn completely won me over and the ending absolutely blew my mind!
Em finds herself locked in a cell alone and next door to Finn, both of them being tortured for information. After finding a mysterious note hidden in her cell’s drain, Em decides there’s no other option but to break out, go back in time and do the unthinkable. The story took me on a rollercoaster of emotions! I want to heap more praise about the wonderful plot, but I think its best read not really knowing what’s going on and experiencing the wonder when it all falls into place.
The quality of the writing was superb, even more so if you consider that this is Terrill’s debut. Not only was it non-stop excitement (I had real trouble putting the book down once I got started), but the characters were all so incredibly likable. She managed to create someone real in Em, who I came to know and love within a very short space of time. I loved her tenacity, strength, and her ability to grow up and make near impossible decisions so quickly. I also loved sweet, kind Finn, who is just as brave, funny and most importantly, a good friend as well as a boyfriend. I loved seeing how their relationship grew ‘backwards’—knowing how they ended up and seeing their relationship dynamic change and grow. And their banter was glorious.
There were so many incredibly cool scenes in this book as a result of the way the plot was set up and it’s taking all my willpower not to hit you with CAPSLOCK giddiness, but in addition to that, it also had all the FEELS (ok, I hit you with one caps). I even cared about the supposed villain, but mostly I cared about Em and Finn throughout, future to past, even when they were essentially different people. This is what made it a winning combination for me. Also, Terrill really couldn’t have wrapped the story up any better. I was satisfied and a little hopeful, which is just how I love to be after reading a great book.
I highly recommend this book to anyone! You won’t be disappointed.
(Just wanted to say a quick thank you to Bloomsbury for my review being quoted in the UK paperback edition of the book! I’m extremely excited and honoured.)