Tuesday, 14 November 2017

Teaser Tuesday: Timeless: Diego and the Rangers of the Vastlantic by Armand Baltazar

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by Ambrosia of The Purple Booker.
To play along just do the following:
  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Timeless: Diego and the Rangers of the Vastlantic by Armand Baltazar.

Timeless – Katherine Tegen Books

Everyone will eat what your cook has prepared. That is an order.”
— Chapter 8

“Am I forgiven or what?”
Lucy punched him in the arm. “Perhaps.”
Ouch! Diego winced. She’d hit his sore shoulder. “Yeah, well, you sure don’t punch—”
“Don’t say ‘like a girl’ or I’m leaving.”
— Chapter 17

Also long-ish … I’m getting wordy. Sorry? This book is also so worth talking about though. Maybe sorter next week.
Get ready for some heavy literature. Not because the book I chose for today is hard to read but because it is literally a heavy book. The page count clocks in at 624 pages, which in itself is already quite a number. Add to that the fact that this is a book originally intended for a younger teen audience and you’ll probably call the book people a mad bunch. And yet … this book also has very specific paper requests. If you take a look at the excerpt here, you’ll know why. Yes, this book needs art paper, because there are more than 150 full-colour photorealistic illustrations inside. This could just as easily have been an art book; the author as a former animations movie designer certainly could have stopped at that. Luckily, he didn’t but decided to fulfil his son’s wish for a story that includes pirates, robots, dinosaurs, Roman legionnaires, and steampunk. Wait, what? That sounds totally over the top and unrealistic? Well, at first it might seem that way but once you’ve read this book you’ll wonder whatever made you think like that.
The solution is not time travel but almost the very opposite: A total collapse of the space-time continuum. Suddenly, Victorian England exists right alongside the pre-historic age as well as the Golden Twenties or the far future. Of course, this couldn’t have worked well from the very start but about fifteen years after this time collision the different cultures have grudgingly accepted that they have to co-exist in this new age. Or most of them have because there are also those who would do anything, really anything, to revert this. Even if that means sacrificing the lives of a generation that in their eyes was never meant to be.
Enter our newly 13-year-old hero and the unlikely group of kids, who have to face some challenges and overcome their own differences, before they can call themselves friends and, most importantly, face the threat not only to their lives but to the future of the only world they’ve ever known.
What I liked about this book, apart from the A-mazing illustrations (seriously, they look like stills from a movie shot in UHD), is that the story also stands on its own. It would have been easy to rely on the novelty of this enormous illustrated book and have a mediocre story to accompany it. But the characters are well-defined, they have flaws (some almost shake-worthy-ly so), and learning curves. The story while itself not new per se (save dad, save the world) is told in an appealing and paced way that also makes you look at parallels in the real world. This story is based on a heap of history after all. There are comments on society and our present if you care to look for them, but not in a raised voice or preachy tone.You can just as easily read this as a straightforward adventure and be swept away by the storytelling, which sometimes is also carried out by the illustrations alone with no accompanying text whatsoever in a very graphic novel style.
A book like a movie and this really begs to make it to the big screen (and my computer screen, I really want to be able to fly a gravity board and race against Lucy or escape from a hoard of allosaurs. On second thought, I’ll also be content with a real gravity board and no dinosaurs, thank you.). In the meantime, I’ll be waiting for book two. Because while the plot stands on its own, the story is far from over.

Have you been introduced to a surprising accumulation of plot points recently? Or maybe a new to you way of storytelling? Share your thoughts and teasers in the comments.


Beth F said...

WOw. Sounds so visual! I'll have to look for this one.

Unknown said...

I like the dialogue. And that cover sure has me curious:)

My TT from Passing Strange

sherry fundin said...

Sounds like fun.
sherry @ fundinmental My TT

Kathy Martin said...

Sounds intriguing. Obviously, not something I could read on my Kindle though. This week I am showcasing Heartstone by Elle Katherine White. Happy reading!

Laura said...

Love the idea that it is illustrated so. My teaser comes from Paradox Bound by Peter Clines.

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