Wednesday, January 27, 2016

review: passenger, alexandra bracken

Author: Alexandra Bracken
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Time Travel, Romance, Historical Fiction
Pub Date: January 5th 2016
Publisher: Disney Hyperion
Pages: 496
Source: Purchased

passage, n.
i. A brief section of music composed of a series of notes and flourishes.
ii. A journey by water; a voyage.
iii. The transition from one place to another, across space and time.

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.


"this was the danger, the seduction of time travel, she realized—it was the opportunity, the freedom of a thousand possibilities of where to live and how to start over. it was the beauty open to you in your life if you only stopped for a moment to look." 

i'm going to start off by saying this: passenger is one of the most unique books i have ever read. and the cover is THE MOST BEAUTIFUL THING I HAVE EVER SEEN.

passenger has some very unique aspects to it that i loved, the first being time travel. i've never read about time travel until now, and the way bracken described/created it in her book was incredible. i could immediately tell that a lot of research was put into writing passenger, and it surely paid off. bracken has such a beautiful writing style that draws you in and keeps you turning page after page. (this being said, i'm definitely going to check out her other books as well!)

my favorite part of passenger was the scavenger-hunt-through-time concept. in books, i generally like to be kept guessing what will happen next, and bracken did just this. i especially liked how there was a special way to decode clues, and how there was always some type of connection to etta's family wherever they went. this kind of thing is one of the things i absolutely love reading about!

however, it was a bit hard to get into. the pacing at the beginning, i felt, was a bit slow. it wasn't until about a third of the way through the book that it started to speed up and get interesting. there were also many points in the story where i found myself somewhat bored. (maybe its just me, though, because i'm not one for historical fiction) in some parts of the story there would be an abundance of information and other places only a small piece. though i am really glad that she took the time to explain the time travel concept in areas of the story so well, because it definitely isn't an easy topic to write about. (but of course, alex bracken absolutely NAILED it!)

i would have loved to see more of the side characters throughout this book, but etta and nicholas were some pretty dang good main characters. the only thing i didn't like was the fact that it was insta-love. it seemed like they barely even knew each other and then suddenly they're in love. this being said, their journey together is an epic one you won't want to miss! and the ending. holy crap. the last 40 pages or so i could not put the book down! and the cliffhanger! it was an incredible way to end passenger and leave the reader wanting wayfarer ASAP! 

overall, i enjoyed passenger, and i'll definitely be picking up wayfarer as soon as it hits shelves!


  1. I'm in the middle of this book, and I'm STRUGGLING THROUGH IT! I think what you said about lots of information in one place and little in others - I'm finding myself skimming over some of the information sometimes :S
    I'm persevering through it for now - your comment about how it gets really good in the last 40 pages or so is my motivation!
    Geraldine @ Corralling Books

    1. glad to hear i wasn't the only one having trouble finishing it! i definitely skimmed past some parts of the book, but the ending is worth the read! :D

  2. I have heard mixed reviews of Passenger, but I think I will try and get it at the Library. I love time-travel books and shows (Doctor Who, anyone?). Thanks for visiting my blog!

    I will follow you on Google+ Try to get your blog on Bloglovin. They have a widget you can add to your blog that will make it easy for people to follow you! Happy blogging.

    1. i would definitely check it out! especially if you love time travel, alex bracken's way of writing about the concept is incredible! and thank you so much for stopping by! happy blogging to you as well! :)

  3. I absolutely loved this book. I agree that it is definitely slow in the beginning, but I would personally read Alex Bracken's grocery lists. I think she's fantastic! I love how well researched this book is and I love how shamelessly flirty Etta is! This was one of my favorite books in 2015. Great review! :)

    1. Thank you! :) And yes, the research that went into this book definitely made it awesome!