Jan 9, 2017

Review--Wayfarer by Alexandra Bracken

All Etta Spencer wanted was to make her violin debut when she was thrust into a treacherous world where the struggle for power could alter history. After losing the one thing that would have allowed her to protect the Timeline, and the one person worth fighting for, Etta awakens alone in an unknown place and time, exposed to the threat of the two groups who would rather see her dead than succeed. When help arrives, it comes from the last person Etta ever expected—Julian Ironwood, the Grand Master’s heir who has long been presumed dead, and whose dangerous alliance with a man from Etta’s past could put them both at risk.

Meanwhile, Nicholas and Sophia are racing through time in order to locate Etta and the missing astrolabe with Ironwood travelers hot on their trail. They cross paths with a mercenary-for-hire, a cheeky girl named Li Min who quickly develops a flirtation with Sophia. But as the three of them attempt to evade their pursuers, Nicholas soon realizes that one of his companions may have ulterior motives.

As Etta and Nicholas fight to make their way back to one another, from Imperial Russia to the Vatican catacombs, time is rapidly shifting and changing into something unrecognizable… and might just run out on both of them.

Wayfarer is the final book to Alexandra Bracken’s Passenger duology, and I must say it was quite the read! Naturally, my memory of Passenger was pretty poor since I read it a year ago. One of my first 2016 books actually, and after reading a few summary points on it, I headed into Wayfarer still feeling completely unprepared! LOL! Binge reading duolgies is highly recommended…advice I wish I could take all the time, there will be another duology ending later this year that I will be unprepared for as well!
But moving on, we join our heroes one section at a time in this one. There are alternating chapters, sometimes a grouping of them, with Etta and Nicholas. They have been separated after Etta was shot and basically got lost through time. There are a number of scenarios and vocab words that I still can’t quite wrap my head around in this series. Time traveling is a tricky subject and while Alexandra does do a pretty good job of explaining it, I will admit that there’s more than one moment or occurrence where I felt myself totally lose my mind in trying to understand what was happening or happened. Needless to say, time has separated Etta and Nicholas. They both are striving to find the other, but soon the astrolabe and needing to find it before the Ironwoods takes priority.
When Etta comes to, she learns she has been rescued of sorts, but her father, Henry. And yes, she’s in part, named after her father. They spend a great deal of time together, getting to know one another and what not. In the meantime, Nicholas and Sophia are working together trying to find Etta or a way to find her. They are soon joined on their adventure by a new character, Li Min. She was a feisty sort of character as well. I truly enjoyed her dynamics. She’s truly full of surprises.
The saddest thing about this book is how much time Etta and Nicholas are apart. We’re talking many, many pages. Like nearly the entire story! I wasn’t quite prepared for that, though I did have an inkling that they were separated for most of the book, it was just a lot more than I had anticipated from that “most”. So yes, there weren’t too many swoony moments between the two lovebirds unfortunately, but the story itself was still pretty awesome! There’s still lots of action and a more than a few handful of chuckle worthy moments.
I’m feeling hard-pressed to write this review. I think in part, having read both of these apart and near their release dates had something to do with it. And then there’s also the fact that the whole time traveling issues were a bit of a problem comprehensive wise. I found it hard to follow along at times throughout. Like I said time traveling is a tricky issue.
The series itself was still a pretty enjoyable one! It’s filled with adventures to new places and in all sorts of different times. They can be scary places for a young woman or even a young African-American man. And the fact that our heroes travel to these places time and time again, make them both pretty brave in my book. Plus, they are dealing with quite the enemy in Ironwood.
The ending to the series was a surprisingly good one! Good and surprising even! Lol! Though I felt a little befuddled by the epilogue. It didn’t really give a sense of finality to the series since it was another Rose flashback, as we get one in the prologue as well. I had wondered if it was a precursor for the bonus story of Rose that was in the Target edition of the book. But it wasn’t really, not that I could see.
Regardless of my confusion at times throughout the story, Wayfarer was still quite the enjoyable read and an even more enjoyable conclusion to a fascinating duology!
Now here I will just briefly talk about the Rose Linden short story contained in the Target edition of Wayfarer. Pathfinder was a short 32 page story about Rose and Henry, Etta’s parents. Rose and Henry have known each other for a while now and when Rose goes on a mission to help thwart Ironwood, she runs into Henry. Feeling more annoyed than swoony, Rose tries to get around him to find her target, but Henry proposes that they work together to find the mysterious letter that Rose is after, for he too was told to find it and learn its contents. And it’s safe to say that the mission doesn’t go as Rose had planned! Basically it was a short and cute little read about Etta’s parents in their time together as young teenagers!

Overall Rating 4/5 stars



  1. Despite the time travelling issue, I'm really glad it worked and you enjoyed the series :) Still have to put my hands on the first book, but I'm really curious about this duology!

  2. I am about 100 pages from finishing this and I totally agree with your assessment so far. I really wish that Nicholas and Etta got to spend more of the book together but it's making me want the swoony moments so good for them on that. As for the time travel stuff, yes, I am also confused. Great review!
    Cassi @ My Thoughts Literally

  3. I loved this book as well! Time-travel books are kind of hit-or-miss for me, but this series and Kerstin Gier's Ruby Red series are two of my favorites. My only big complaint was one that you mentioned - how much time Etta and Nicholas spent apart. We need an epilogue or something devoted to LOTS of Etta/Nicholas time!

    Great review, Jessica. =)

    Alyssa @ The Eater of Books!

  4. I love books where authors can do time travel well. I'm hoping to read more of them this year. Excellent and detailed review. Now that the duology is finished I can read from one to the next and I love this.


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