At a school where Quantum Paradox 101 is a required course and history field trips are literal, sixteen year-old time traveler Bree Bennis excels…at screwing up.
After Bree botches a solo midterm to the 21st century by accidentally taking a boy hostage (a teensy snafu), she stands to lose her scholarship. But when Bree sneaks back to talk the kid into keeping his yap shut, she doesn't go back far enough. The boy, Finn, now three years older and hot as a solar flare, is convinced he's in love with Bree, or rather, a future version of her that doesn't think he's a complete pain in the arse. To make matters worse, she inadvertently transports him back to the 23rd century with her.
Once home, Bree discovers that a recent rash of accidents at her school are anything but accidental. Someone is attacking time travelers. As Bree and her temporal tagalong uncover seemingly unconnected cluesa broken bracelet, a missing data file, the art heist of the millenniumthat lead to the person responsible, she alone has the knowledge to piece the puzzle together. Knowledge only one other person has. Her future self.
But when those closest to her become the next victims, Bree realizes the attacker is willing to do anything to stop her. In the past, present, or future.
|Publisher:||St. Martin's Press|
|Product dimensions:||5.70(w) x 8.40(h) x 1.20(d)|
|Age Range:||13 - 18 Years|
About the Author
Karen Akins lives in the MidSouth where she writes humorous, light YA sci-fi. When not writing or reading, she loves taking care of her son and hanging out with her husband. And watching Downton Abbey. Karen has been many things in her life: an archery instructor, drummer for the shortest-lived garage band in history, and a shockingly bad tic-tac-toe player. LOOP is her first novel.
Read an Excerpt
HITTING THE GROUND is the hardest part. Nine times out of ten, it’s dirt or grass. But all it takes is that one time on concrete or, worse, asphalt to send even the most experienced Shifter into a panic.
My feet slammed into cobblestone. Muskets cracked and echoed down the alley where I’d landed. Acrid gunpowder stung my nostrils, searing my throat as I fought back a cough and crouched down. The gunfire grew louder and louder, bouncing off both sides of the narrow passageway, so I couldn’t tell which direction it was coming from.
Where was I? Valley Freakin’ Forge?
Wyck had missed the target by well over two centuries! Good grief. How hard was a twenty-third to twenty-first Shift? And of all the Shifts, it would have to be this one. He’d pay for this when I got back. Don’t get me wrong. I love a good transporter prank as much as the next girl, but plop me in the middle of Lex and Concord? I am not having that crap.
Puffs of fresh gunsmoke clouded the already-dim alley. Get it together, Bree. I slipped behind a barrel and pulled out my QuantCom. A Virginia address and instructions popped up: “Bree Bennis, pre-Tricentennial midterm. Deposit package contents on Muffy van Sloot’s grave with following message: ‘There’s no time like the past.’”
I squeezed the small white box before sliding it into my pocket. I tried not to think about the other object, the one hidden in my shoe. Guilt burbled up in my stomach, but I squashed it down.
Hard to believe so much could ride on one trip back to the past.
Also hard to believe any person would name their child Muffy van Sloot. It almost sounded like some rich person’s pet.
Boom! The gunfire sounded right outside the alley.
So help me, I thought, if this is all for a dead cat, heads will roll.
Dr. Quigley could flunk me for all I cared. Okay, that wasn’t even a teensy bit true. I couldn’t afford a single red flag on this test. Still, I wasn’t taking a musket ball to the head for anyone. But at least I knew which state I was in. Unless Wyck had flubbed that, too.
What I needed was to find somewhere safe to figure out my next move. Without a sound, I pushed myself up and prepared to dash to the street for a better look at the battle. But before I could move, I heard an unexpected sound. A digital beeping. A boy and a girl, not much older than me, had slipped into the alley. The girl held up a mobile phone. “It’s Rachel,” she said.
“Hey, where were you?” the girl said into the phone. As she talked, the boy caressed the back of her neck. She flicked his hand.
What? I ducked back down and glanced at my Com as it analyzed the phone’s ringtone. Early twenty-first century. Right where I was supposed to be. Okay, maybe Wyck wasn’t a complete idiot after all.
So what the blark was going on?
“I swear we were at the pub for like twenty minutes. No, not Ye Olde Tavern. Ye Olde Pub,” she said. The boy nibbled her ear. She swatted his shoulder.
“Ah, c’mon.” He kissed a path of pecks down her neck to her jaw. She hesitated a moment, then turned the phone off.
The fade timer on my Com blipped down second by second. I only had five hours before being pulled back to my own time. Tight for any assignment, but even more so with today’s less-than-legal extracurricular activity. With a frantic finger, I tapped the edge of the round, smooth device—perfectly masked as a pocket watch to fit into most eras. Come on. It was taking forever to pinpoint my location, and my destination could be hours away. There was no more time to waste. I had to do something.
“Hello.” I stood up from behind the barrel. The boy and girl jumped apart.
“You sh-sh-should … Th-th-this is … private,” stammered the girl.
“Yeah, nothing says private like a makeout session amid musket fire,” I said under my breath as I pushed my way past the lovebirds and stuck my head around the corner of the alleyway.
A sea of scarlet coats, side-holstered drums, and fifes greeted me. Crowds of spectators lined the street. Ahh, heck. Duped by a Revolutionary reenactment parade. I checked my fade timer again. I’d lost precious minutes. Then again, I couldn’t see my transporter doing something drastic like force fading me as soon as the time limit was up. Not that I would let it come to that.
I’d been rubbing the eyelash of a scar at the base of my skull without even thinking about it. Enough. Focus. I flipped my Com to the geolocator. Williamsburg. A good 150 miles from this Chincowhatever place on the other side of Virginia.
Contrary to public opinion, time travel is not an exact science. Whenever I need a good giggle, I’ll watch an antique movie where the hero zips back twenty years, mere minutes before an explosion, to save the heroine in the nick of time. Or, for an even bigger laugh, watch one where he Shifts forward to meet his grandkids. Snort.
When Shift came to shove, getting me within two days and two hundred miles of my goal wasn’t shabby transporting. Not shabby at all. Not that I’d admit it to Wyck’s face.
I stepped into the bright street and disappeared into a mob of strollers and camera-wielding dads. I stood on my tiptoes, a necessary measure given my small stature, in search of …
Bingo. School buses.
It wasn’t like I got extra credit for being frugal on missions. But then again, nobody handed out medals for blowing a big wad of era cash on a three-hour cab ride. A few bonus points for resourcefulness might even push me up a grade if I was teetering on the line. Up until six months ago, I never would have worried about a measly midterm. Then again, there were a lot of things I never would have considered before six months ago.
Temporal smuggling, for one.
Stop it. I had precious little time as it was. And certainly not enough to waste on a squeaky conscience. Everything had to appear completely normal on this assignment or I could get caught.
I jogged across the street, into the sea of buses. Up and down the rows, I searched. Blark, there were a lot of them.
“Come on, come on, come on.” I raced down the final row and let out a sigh of relief. The last block of buses said “Accomack County School District,” my destination. I staked out a hiding spot near them, behind an old oak.
A swarm of elementary kids clambered past. Too bad I couldn’t hop on their bus. I was short for sixteen, but I wasn’t that short. Rule number one of Shifting: Don’t stick out.
Okay, technically, that would be Rule number two, the first one being: Don’t bring anything from the past back with you. But that one’s a no-brainer. Fiddle with the past all you want, fine. It’s not like you can change it. Not really. (That’s what I had to keep reminding myself to go through with the extra job I’d been hired to do today.)
But the future? No one wants to mess around with that.
A familiar voice drifted toward me, and I leaned deeper into the tree’s shadow.
“No, not the tavern. The pub.” It was the phone girl.
“Well, you should have been in the bathroom covering that hickey,” said her friend.
“Everyone knows it’s not a hickey until the blood vessels break. It’s a love bite.”
“Yeah, well, guess what you can bite?”
They stepped on one of the other buses with a group of high schoolers. Sweet relief. Their insipid banter was going to give me a headache.
I reached for the base of my skull.
My head wasn’t hurting. At all.
Most Shifters called it the Buzz—those painful twinges that scrambled your thoughts and blotched your vision. Like mosquito bites in your brain. Some Shifts were worse than others. But it was always present. Until now.
I pulled out my vial of Buzztabs. God bless the Initiative. Without their Assistance Fund I couldn’t afford the pills, and they were the only thing that quashed the sensation. Of course, if today’s side mission went well I’d never need their help again. I shook the tube. I wasn’t sure if I should take one even though I felt fine. But why did I feel fine?
A soft hand brushed my shoulder before I had a chance to pop a tablet in my mouth.
“You need to give those back to the nurse, dear. We’re about to leave.” The chaperone, who thankfully appeared to be a frazzled mother rather than a teacher, nudged me along without making eye contact. I put the pills back in my pocket.
Chincoteague Island, here I come.
While I hadn’t taken any formal classes like some of my friends, I considered myself a master of social camouflage. A pulled-down wisp of bang here, a curled-up slouch there, and I was all but invisible. As the bus filled, I fixed my eyes out the window and splayed my arms out so that I took up exactly two-thirds of the seat. Not so much that the chaperone would come and make a fuss. But enough to make it clear I liked riding solo. No one in their right mind would choose to sit by me.
Unless it was the last seat left.
A scrawny redheaded kid who was being devoured by a backpack twice his size shuffled up the aisle. His thick, concave glasses squished the sides of his head in like an insect. Everyone else on the bus appeared the typical sixteen or seventeen years old, but I doubted the increasingly flushed kid had seen the better side of fifteen yet. He gripped the back of the padded seat two rows up in desperate search of another vacant spot. When the chaperone began calling out names, he gave up and slumped down next to me.
“Here,” he responded to the name “Finn Masterson,” saving me even the most basic of pleasantries. He watched me out of the corner of his eye with a look of part anticipation and part curiosity as we neared the end of the list. When the bus pulled out onto the highway, he broke down and said, “They didn’t call your name.”
“Nope,” I said.
“Why didn’t they call your name?”
“Probably because it wasn’t on the list.” I rubbed my thumb against some graffiti on the vinyl seat in front of us.
“What is it?”
“My name? Bree.”
“Oh.” He stared past me out the window, either deep in thought or avoiding eye contact, I couldn’t tell. Or care. I wasn’t even sure why I’d given him my real name, especially right now. Most of the time on Shifts, I doled out fake ones. But this kid had a sweet earnestness about him that kept the lie off my tongue.
Plus, he might prove useful when we got to our destination. A little civility never hurt anyone. On occasion, it made the difference between getting home to the twenty-third century to sleep in my own bed and standing in line at a nineteenth-century soup kitchen while I figured out an assignment.
Today it might be the difference in life and death.
Finn dove into a comic book. I pulled out my mission package. There was no point in thinking about the extra job if I didn’t finish the assigned one. Nothing special with the wrapping. I shook it, and whatever was inside rattled around—probably a long-forgotten wedding ring or some other sentimental crap. It never ceased to amaze me the stuff people sent back to their ancestors. Lost love notes, baby teeth, underwear.
Oh, the undies.
And for what? Shifters saw it for what it was—pointless. It was always nonShifters who wanted to forge some imaginary connection to their past. So they could know that they were the ones who returned Great-Aunt Gertrude’s precious applesauce muffin recipe when it mysteriously showed up tucked in her front door after she’d misplaced it all those years before.
Something bothered me now as I stared down at the box. Something amiss. Muffy van Sloot. The name oozed money. Rich people never used the Institute for deliveries, any more so than they’d walk into a barber school for their next haircut. They used professional chronocouriers. Ehh. Maybe this was a feeble attempt to make amends for losing the family fortune.
Or maybe it was all for a dead cat.
Finn tucked away his comic and pulled out a dinky action figure. At first I thought he was engrossed in putting it together, but without looking at me he said, “You a new student?”
“Kind of.” Vagueness was usually the best policy on missions. I hated lying, and technically, I wasn’t. I was a student. Just not of this school. Or century.
“You weren’t on the same bus before.”
“Do you live on the island or inland?”
“You’re just a bundle of questions, aren’t you?”
Finn’s cheeks flamed, and he snapped the last piece onto his toy. “I’m collecting the whole set.” He held up his little treasure and examined it before unzipping the leg pocket of his cargo pants. “I’ve seen the movie three times already. Seen it yet?”
I looked at the action figure before he put it away. “Yeah.” And all three horrible sequels as well. Plus the franchise reboot that came out forty years after the original.
I pressed my forehead against the window and watched trees whir past in a blur of green and brown. There was something comforting about forests, sticking around from one lifetime to the next. The cool glass rattled and thrummed against my temple, sending Buzz-like vibrations all the way to my teeth. But it wasn’t real. I still felt fine—better than fine. Did it mean something was wrong? A startling thought addled my mind: Maybe Mom stopped getting the Buzz before …
She would have mentioned something like that. Mom wasn’t reckless, no matter what people whispered.
Six months of what-ifs had seared me with a perpetual paranoia. But I needed to stay focused, especially today. Everything about this midterm had to appear absolutely normal. The sky started to peek through the foliage in a blipping Morse code, and the next thing I knew the bus began kathunk-kathunk-kathunking across a bridge. A long bridge.
I gripped the seat in front of me and leaned as far from the window as possible.
Finn scooted away and finally tapped my shoulder. “Welcome to my lap,” he said.
“Sorry. I don’t like the water.” I inched back toward the window.
“And you moved to an island? Sucks to be you.”
Dirt, asphalt, concrete … heck, I could land in a vat of Jell-O for all I cared. Just not water. Anything but water. Asphalt carried the risk of being seen. Water carried the risk of never being seen again.
After the bridge’s last bump, my muscles unclenched. A sea-and-sun-cracked sign welcomed us to Chincoteague Island. The shuttered motels and deserted crab houses screamed “off-season.” It reminded me of Spring Break two years before, when Mom and I had thrown a suitcase each in the back of the old beat-up Pod Grandpa left her after he died. Right before it died. We took off up the coast and stopped in every brine-caked tourist trap we could find, ate so much chowder we thought we’d explode. I liked this town already, not that I intended to stay long. The faster I finished the midterm, the faster I moved on to the other delivery, the faster I could put this whole business behind me.
At the school parking lot, a stream of parents circled the block to pick up their children. Older students chattered a play-by-play of the trip on the way to their cars. Finn hung back and eyed me as I twisted my finger around a lock of hair. A cab ride was out. Public buses were unlikely. We really were in the middle of nowhere. Ugh. I was down to an hour and a half, and I had no idea how far away the cemetery was or how big it might be. I’d already made up my mind that I would finish the assignment before I dealt with the contraband item hidden in my shoe. Any red flags and school officials would swarm this place and investigate. I couldn’t afford any chance of getting caught.
“Would you like a ride?” Finn dug his hands into his pockets and scraped a rock across the ground with his foot.
“That’s okay.” The last thing I needed was to be trapped in the back of some crusty station wagon while his mom pried me for information. I’d rather hitchhike. “I wouldn’t want to put your parents out.”
“I drove myself. My car’s right over there.”
I followed his finger to a black Porsche SUV. “You drive?”
“You can’t be more than fourteen years old.”
“I’m fifteen.” He straightened up to his full height, still barely reaching the top of my head. “And I have my hardship license.”
“Hardship?” I looked at the Porsche emblem again and scoffed.
“Both my parents work, and the bus leaves before I get out of soccer. I can drive myself to school and back.” He pulled the keys out. “Look, do you want a ride or not?”
Given the long walk back to the highway, I didn’t have any other options.
“Do you mind if I sit in the back? I need to stretch out. Umm, leg cramp.”
He gave me a look that let me know my excuse was as pathetic as it sounded, but what did I care? It wasn’t like I would see him after I got to my mission site. I settled in and twiddled with my QuantCom until the geolocator came up.
“Is that a pocket watch?” he asked.
“Family heirloom.” Again, not a total lie. It did connect me with the past. It just had more in common with his car’s GPS than his wristwatch.
“Let me know where to turn,” he said.
“No problem. Take a right at the main road.”
Finn tapped his foot timidly on the gas, and we snailed forward through the parking lot.
My mission timer beeped. “Umm, I’m in a bit of a hurry.”
Finn shot me a really? look in the rearview mirror but sped up. We turned onto the main road. Right. Left. Right. Right. No, I meant left.
A few times, Finn double-checked my directions. “This street? How much farther?”
After fourteen excruciating minutes, we pulled into a long, brick driveway. I had expected a graveyard or a church. It was a mansion. Or at least the biggest house I’d ever seen. After all the quaint shake-shingled cottages, it seemed especially daunting. But whatever. As long as there was a dead Muffy under the sand or dirt somewhere, I didn’t care. I was within spitting distance of finishing this midterm; then I could get to the real business at hand. I snapped the Com shut and opened the door.
“Thanks for the ride.”
Finn flipped around to face me. “Do you realize where we are?”
“Yeah, Thirty-four Seventy-one Woodman Estates.”
“I know. We’re at my house.”
Copyright © 2014 by Karen Akins
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Loop was such a fun read! There were twists and turns and loops everywhere. A lot was going on in this book and while it could've gotten a bit confusing or too much, the author made everything work. She did well with creating this time travel adventure. Unlike a lot of people, I'm not much of a fan of time travel. I definitely loved it in this book, though! There were plenty of cool science-y/technical parts of Shifting, but what made me love this part was how twisted it made the story. For example, Finn and Bree. For the majority of the book, present Bree (the narrator) interacted with Finn (a guy from a couple centuries prior to her time) who--and this was only a small portion of he twistedness--had a relationship with Future Bree (the narrator's future self). There were present, future, and sometimes even past different versions of quite a few characters. There were certain things that present Bree or others had to do in order to make past events happen. Timelines were all mixed up, but in the best possible way. The characters were so good! I connected with them and remained invested in them throughout the entire book. Bree was a really fumy heroine. Her voice was a big reason why Loop was so fun to read. Finn was cute. A bit silly, too. I loved how he had a relationship with Bree's future self because he was already mostly comfortable with her (the past version of the girl he knew) and had pre-existing feelings for her. She, however, barely knew him at all. They were pretty entertaining to read about as they got to know each other. I adored them! As for the other characters, I loved how they added to the element of surprise (I would say how, but that would be spoilery). I also really liked how each had a personality easily distinguishable from the others as well as how the bad guys had some weak and/or good sides to them. The tone of this book was light for the most part, but it had many serious moments mixed in. It was light, but not fluffy. Overall, Loop impressed me with its many twists and turns, great characters, adorable romance, and interesting plot. I highly recommend reading this one and joining me as I anxiously wait for the sequel! Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars *I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. This has not affected my review or opinion of this book.
"You can't change the past. One of those weird temporal loops that couldn't be explained." Bree Bennis lives in the twenty-third century where, because of a special gene mutation, she can travel anywhere in time. It's been years since travelers had to hide their unique skills but Bree knows better than most that time travel is still greeted with suspicion and even disdain by those unable to travel. Bree used to be at the top of all of her classes. Now her biggest talent seems to involve making a mess of things. After her solo midterm to the twenty-first century goes spectacularly wrong, Bree knows she's in big trouble. Failing to complete her mission is one thing. Accidentally revealing herself to a boy and sort of taking him hostage? That could get Bree expelled. Or worse. The only option is to try to sneak back and try to complete her midterm before anyone notices. The only problem is Bree ends up missing her target destination. She finds the boy--Finn who is now three years older and at least three times more attractive--but before she can fix anything Bree is pulled back to her own time. With Finn. Who claims that he and Bree's future self are . . . dating? Bree has plenty to do between hiding Finn and not flunking out of school when she learns that a rash of accidents have been taking out time travelers around the school. Turns out the attacks are anything but accidental and with Finn's help Bree soon realizes she might be the only one able to find the person responsible and stop them before their timeline is irreparably damaged in Loop (2014) by Karen Akins. Loop is Akins' first novel and the first half of a duology that completes with Twist. Loop dives right into the action when Bree's life goes from bad to worse after everything goes wrong on her midterm. Bree manages to take everything in stride with only a few choice (and possibly made up) swear words to help. As Bree delves deeper into secrets about her own past (and future) she also realizes she might be at the tip of a very big problem--one her future self knew Bree would have to try to solve. Akins skillfully combines science fiction adventure with a fascinating mystery to create a story that is as original as it is fun. Although some plot points--particularly clues left for Bree--are often obvious, Bree and Finn's journey as they try to understand what brought them together more than makes up for it. Bree's world is filled with casual wonders ranging from automated travel pods to Pegamoos, all of which are brought to life in vivid prose. In a story that literally spans centuries, the world-building to top notch and gives Loop a strong sense of place no matter where or when Bree finds herself. Bree's voice is distinct and snappy, making this book conversational and completely fascinating. While the romance in Loop is a big draw, Bree also has a great character arc as she tries to reconcile who she is in her present with who she seems to be in the future. With massive conspiracies, clues left across time, and a displaced romance that is often baffling to Bree, Loop is an action-packed story with humor and excitement. Possible Pairings: The Darkest Part of the Forest by Holly Black, Chasing Power by Sarah Beth Durst, The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson, Once a Witch by Carolyn MacCullough, Hourglass by Myra McEntire, Soulprint by Megan Miranda, The Shadow Society by Marie Rutkoski, The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater, All Our Yesterdays by Cristin Terrill, Pivot Point by Kasie West, Paranormalcy by Kiersten White
MY THOUGHTS I love books with time travel and have a minor obsession with it! So, I had great expectations for this book and they were met! Bree lives in the 23rd century and has the time travel gene. As part of an assignment, she has to go back to the 21st century and ends up running into a geeky kid named Finn. But when Bree sneaks back into the 21st century, she finds that she is 3 years off and Finn is, apparently in love with Bree. Not this Bree, but future Bree. And future Bree also told Finn that he needs to protect her. Bree has to figure out what exactly future Bree plans were and what happened to her mom (who is in a mysterious coma). The whole idea behind this book was so well-crafted! The idea of time travel wasn't confusing at all and it made perfect sense! And the entire plot that this book revolves around is amazing! I love the idea of the time gene! I also really liked the idea of a future self affecting your present! The characters were great, though I did have a few issues with Bree. Bree would constantly disregard any ideas or theories Finn had, saying that it wasn't possible, when they all made perfect sense. I can understand why Bree was like this, as Finn's theories went against everything Bree was told, but I really wish she could consider them. Honestly, this wasn't that big of a deal. Everything else about Bree was great. Finn was also great and, even though this isn't his Bree, he still cared about her. And Bree also has some great supporting friends! Don't let the cover deceive you, this isn't a romance book. There is a teeny-tiny romance, but it's hardly there (may be in the next book). The amazing plo takes up a majority of the book! My only issue with this book was how confusing it was. I mentioned earlier that "The idea of time travel wasn't confusing", which is true, the idea wasn't confusing! But there is a lot of past and future events that happen that just become really coming! There are so many things that future Bree supposedly does to different time lines affecting the story that were hard to keep track of! If it wasn't for how confused I got (near the end), this would have gotten 5 stars. IN CONCLUSION This is a very interesting time travel book! It was confusing at times, but everything else was great! I do recommend this book and I am looking forward to the next book!
Who cares if ur popular all u need is peoples respect and u will make it through school way better than those popular people
This is one of those books that I nearly didn't read because it got stuck in my ARC backlog. I've been picking up fewer and fewer young adult titles, but I remember I loved the idea of it when I first requested it. I just wasn't sure I was still all that interested. Before I decided not to read it, I checked out Goodreads and saw some incredible reviews from bloggers whose opinions I trust, so I decided to read it. And boy am I glad I did! It was a fantastic read – one of my favorite YA titles in 2015 so far. Loop caught my attention right from the get-go. I loved the concept and the world-building was excellent. But more that that? The characters? LOVED. Bree was funny and awkward and super likable. Finn was super swoony and I loved him and Bree together. Even the secondary characters were wonderful. I loved the underlying mystery and just how easy the concept of time travel was to grasp in this book. It's not always. More often that not while reading time travel books, I find myself scratching my head and wondering "huh?" than enjoying the story. That definitely wasn't the case here. Oh, and future DC? It's awesome. I particularly love the idea of The Pentagon as an amusement park. It was the little details like this that made this book so fantastic to me. That's about all I'm going to tell you about this one. You really need to just read it and enjoy it for yourself. It's the perfect book to get lost in. I'm incredibly excited to read the sequel soon! I received a copy of this book from the publisher, via NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review.
A beautiful girl, in a silken green dress, walked through the door.
Ariana looked at him, and said, gently, "It's okay."
Knocked on the door holding her blue silk shawl around her mor tightly as wounds blled out quickly on her legs. Her sky blue silk dress a torn as sh shivered.
4.5 stars! "Umm, because you smell like a wad of yummy wrapped in a layer of delicious?" -Bree LOOP was such a great, fun book, with an amusing character and intriguing take on time travel! I was actually given an eARC of this, but didn't realize that it expired by a certain date (boo), so... I had to buy my own version so I could read it in time for the review/giveaway on my blog. Which is fine, and totally worth it! (I've actually now ordered a hard copy--that's how much I loved it!) LOOP starts out with Bree being given an assignment to go to a particular place in time. There's a whole other thing going on that you don't fully understand until quite a bit further into the book, but let's just say that she is also trying to sneak in an "off the record" assignment at the same time, to benefit her family. Problem is, pretty much everything goes wrong, which starts a long twist of things getting more funny and wonky and confusing as she learns nothing at all is really as it seems and this might not be the first time she's been at this particular point in time. I don't want to say much because there are layers to the plot and I might give something away, but I will say that not reading the blurb actually benefitted me a lot, because I had no idea what to expect and that made the read more exciting. I also loved Karen's voice. She gave Bree, her best friend, Mimi, and the rest of the characters such great dialogue, and her descriptions were seamless. I'm one of those readers who doesn't always want long descriptive parts when I'm really enjoying a book (get me to the action!), and this fit the bill with perfect laughs, set-ups, and surprises. Another quote: Finn stared at me like I'd sprouted a third eyeball. He waited until I was done before he sat up and clapped his hands together. Again. And again. "Bravo! Did they serve a helping of brainwashing with the twigs this morning or was it beamed directly into your brain via your microchip?" There are so many elements to LOOP that time travel really is just a part of it. Even if that's not normally your "thing", I guarantee you'll enjoy LOOP anyway. I love love loved book one, and can't wait to read the next in the series!
'Loop' is the exhilarating first book in a new young adult science fiction series. The series is set in the twenty-third century, where everything has advanced - medicine, technology, transportation - since our time in the twenty-first century. There are certain people who contain a specific gene that allows them to travel through time; and with the advanced technology of the future, scientists have created a microchip that will keep the Shifters (time travelers) safe and healthy, among other things. Our main character, Bree, is a Shifter. She attends the Institute, a school that specializes in time travel practice. Bree's life has gone downhill in the past few months, and when she makes a pretty big mistake on her midterm, she's all but certain that she'll lose her scholarship to the school. Things go from bad to even worse when Bree tries to go back in time to the place where her midterm problem happens so she can try to salvage the situation - but Bree ends up three years after her initial shift. Finn, the scrawny kid she met during her midterm shift, is now incredibly hot and just as annoying. He and his family seem to know a lot about what is going on in Bree's life - her future life. Finn refuses to give Bree any answers at the request of her future self - who just happens to be pretty close to him. The unthinkable happens when Bree is forced back to her present - and Finn goes with her. As if that isn't bad enough, things are getting downright strange at the Institute. Her friends are getting into accidents, things are coming up missing, and the culprit is attacking Shifters. After Bree and Finn put together the puzzle and realize who is behind everything, she realizes that only they hold the knowledge - except for her future self. Will Bree and Finn be able to stop the attacks before people she loves get hurt? I have to admit that I don't often read time travel fiction, mostly owing to the fact that I get incredibly confused. I overthink every single part of the process and its effects - to the point where I'm totally lost and can't enjoy the book. I tried my hardest not to put too much extra thought into the inner workings of time travel when I read this book - and I have to admit that it did help, if just a little. The whole concept of time travel and different versions of yourself - it boggled my mind just like it always does. However, the other aspects of the book were so thrilling that I was able to focus on the story itself instead of all the tiny details that normally sidetrack me. The plot of the book was wholly original in itself, but the varying concepts along with the romance and the deeper layers of the story really made it stand out for me. Bree is a great main character - I liked her right from the start. She's a very realistic character considering the plot of the book. Bree's a typical teenage girl who has to deal with everyday problems just like regular teens. She has to keep her grades up in school so she doesn't lose her scholarship, her mother is in a coma and Bree tries everything she can think of to help figure out what exactly happened to her and how to bring her back, and that's before we get into the time traveling parts of her life. The story is told from Bree's point of view, so we get an inside look at the "real" her - sarcastic inner dialogue, unspoken fears and doubts, as well as her hopes and dreams. I loved getting to know Bree on such a personal level - I think it made her very easy to identify with. I don't really focus on the romance parts of books, but I have to point out that Bree and Finn were fun and fascinating to watch. I loved seeing them get to know each other and how their relationship grows (even if it is unconventional). Their romance gave an extra depth to the book that I believe makes it more appealing to a wider audience. Everything about the book is so well done that I can't begin to do it justice with a review. The writing was fast paced but flowed naturally. The setting was incredibly detailed and I loved learning all about the twenty-third century and their improvements on life. The entire story was told with vivid imagery and descriptions - to the point that I felt I was experiencing everything alongside Bree. There is so much happening in the book - the romance, the time traveling, and then the big mystery of the person they need to stop. I'm so excited that this is just the first book in what promises to be nothing short of an astounding and enchanting series! Fans of science fiction and time travel need to read this book. Don't miss out on it! I highly recommend it to fans of all genres and I'll be eagerly awaiting the next installment to see what happens next! Disclosure: I received a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.
Mind. Blown. Can that be my review for Loop? No seriously, can I just say ‘mind blown, read it’ and be done with it? Really that is all I want to say. I wanted to tell people to read Loop when I was 4% done with the book. I wanted to tell people when I was 18% done. I just wanted to tell all the people to read it as soon as the possible can. Because Loop, is 100% fantastic! Loop is a fantastic time travel story about Bree, a 16 year old girl, living in the 23rd century where Time Travel is a part of everyday life. To complete a midterm, Bree is sent to the 21st century and ends up on a path she never expected when she takes a teenage boy hostage (sort of by accident). On the verge of losing her scholarship at the Institute she has no choice but to sneak back to talk to the kid. The only problem is he is convinced he knows her and they are in love. Not knowing what to do and what is actually going on Bree returns home, but inadvertently ends up taking him with her. Now stuck in the 23rd century with a boy she doesn’t know that knows her and a pile of odd occurrences, Bree has to figure out just what is exactly happening and who it is she is supposed to trust. There was a lot I loved about this book. I loved Bree’s voice, Finn’s adorableness, the humor, the writing. I even liked all of the side characters. But the one thing I loved the most (the humor and Finn are tied for a close second) was the mystery you read without knowing you are reading it. There is a very intricate story woven into the pages of Loop and as a reader you don’t really even know that’s what is happening. Every single thing that Akins’ wrote was written for the purpose of moving the story along. Time travel and parallel life stories are hard. There is a lot of planning and plotting involved to not confuse the reader and to make the plot flow seamlessly. And when all is said and done you can tell Akins put the time and energy in it for her readers. I wasn’t left feeling confused or like something was missing. I left Loop just wanting the story to go on forever. I could go on and on, as I said there was so much I loved about this book, but I feel like I may have said too much already. I feel like the best thing I can do for you is to just tell you to read it and enjoy. To take it all in. To be left dying for more. To just read a great book with some great writing. If you love parallel life/time travel stories, then DO NOT MISS this book. It is a must. Now give me the sequel Twist!!!
A simple beautiful looking girl walked toward the door shivering-