Author: Elle Strauss
Format: e-ARC from NetGalley
Did I like it: YES!
If you’ve read any of my previous reviews, you’ve probably figured out that I really enjoy YA books with magical elements, hedging more towards magical realism than fantasy. Clockwise is a great example of that genre, although it also includes a bit of historic fiction in the mix. The story is centered around Casey Donovan, a high school sophomore from the Boston suburbs. She’s pretty normal except for one awkward thing – she time travels. This isn’t one of those “I have control of my traveling and choose where and when to go”. Nooooo. Casey has no control over when she travels and always goes to the same place – 1860. This is stressful, but manageable, until she accidentally takes the school’s star athlete and all around popular guy back with her.
I really enjoyed reading this – it was short, fast paced, and exactly what I was looking for for a quick read between longer books. I thought the characters were very believable – both Casey’s reactions to time traveling (she’s resigned and well prepared, but that doesn’t mean she likes it) and the awkwardness of being 16 (oh man…let’s just say I have no desire to be 16 again). I was impressed by the way that the author wove together different genres pretty seamlessly, since this book is a combination of YA coming of age, fantasy (come on – time travel!), and historical fiction with a little romance sprinkled in here and there.
The ARC I had was less than 200 pages long, so this would be a great book for someone who wants a good story, but is maybe a little intimidated by some of the giant YA novels that have been coming out lately. Because let’s be honest, even I’m intimidated by them sometimes.