Nomad, by J.L. Bryan - 4.5 Stars

Nomad is as a time travel story with a kick-ass, thinks on her feet protagonist following the theme of going back in history to remove the key individual who made it all go wrong. This is dream fulfilment really. If you said to a friend “What would you do if you could travel back in time”, the usual answers would be about lottery numbers or stopping Hitler. However, the things that don’t seem threatening to us now, like the insidious Pringles Corporation, might grow into mind-death behemoth sicko megalomaniac control-o-freak-o-monsters a decade or two from now (you heard it here first) and only people from the future would know it was going to happen (and me). They even admit it in their tag line: “When you pop, you can’t stop.” See? Why can’t either of us stop? Where’s it all leading? Am I the only one who’s even a little bit concerned at the suggestion there are other things you can use the tube for? I don’t think Haribo are totally trustworthy either because gelatine comes from boiling bones and where do they get that many bones? Well? I’m waiting for an answer to my NUMEROUS letters. Anyway…

…and I’m back in the room. Okay, if anyone’s still reading this (I’ve been awake for over 30 hours, by the way. You can probably tell from the sound of my eye-lids dipping against the keys), I don’t think I’ve mentioned yet that this is a really thumpingly exciting book and you should read it – an action flick blast of entertainment from beginning to end which I’m happy to recommend. I noted consistently readable writing, a strong plot, flowing momentum and it has some useful concept solving behind it (like how the Universe copes with a time travel paradox). Although it starts with guns as the solution, the heroine soon realises that option won’t work (she’s in a repetition loop) and tries to solve it in a more considered, feminine way, stalking a guy on a college campus. It’s interesting to see a soldier figure try to influence an outcome by talking to people and using charm instead of reaching for the usual blast grenade (I have a small, hard and knobbly, probably also clothy and tasteless pineapple in my room at the moment, which could be the most offensive piece of fruit in Hampshire today and it made me think of that).

I’m still thinking. Why are several people only giving this three stars when it’s a great example of its kind? Hint: It might be the suggestive cover.

I normally review the story, not the cover art, but I mean, did the publisher really ask someone to dress up like that? Where did they find her? The platform shoes look dangerously unstable, especially if she’s going to spend a lot of time in that position, and she also looks so lithe and thin, which is amazing really when you think of all the calories in cum. Seriously though, there’s a saying that you shouldn’t pass opinions until you’ve walked a mile in their shoes. If I tried to walk a mile in her shoes, I’d fall on my bum quite smartly. She’s described in the book as being covered in scars and bruises (it’s the shoes, I’m telling you. Really, the whole thing could be avoided). Enough then, sarcastic honour has been satisfied.

Laying aside my odd mood today, it’s only fair to say that I didn’t just like the book, I really enjoyed it. The chase scenes, cool technology, funny friendships, rock climbing, anti-social social cliques, dictatorial stuff, hiding in cupboards, cutting lasers, exploding cupboards, evil uncles, super-heated hydrogen pellets and all the rest really punched the adrenal gland and got my attention. If I’d written this I’d be proud of myself for a month. Usually I don’t review books billed as YA because they’re too simplistic but I think this has been mistakenly described as YA because it entertains beyond that limited age range; higher as well I mean, not younger. If you are a prude who has somehow purchased this without seeing the cover, it does have a few sexy moments described within but the author knows when to stop. As do I.