Find Lapse on Amazon, and Goodreads!
(Review appearing for the first time on Rainhandbooks.com!)Oooh, timecrimes!
Well, the title and the blurb were enough to get me interested in this title even if it hadn’t been shared with me in return for an honest review. If I picked this volume up off a shelf at Barnes & Noble (or certainly the library) I’d be tempted to take it home with me, and there’s always something to be said for that. Since I’m on the aesthetics, I’ll also add that I really appreciated the clear, clean layout of this book, the readable typeface, and I always like to see cleverly-named chapters. You might think some of that is to be taken for granted, to which I can only say: “Not necessarily.” Especially on the independent circuit.
I felt that the action scenes moved well and kept me reading, with downtime placed at good intervals. If I’m counting the pages rather than being surprised by how many I’ve read there’s a problem, but not so here. I finished this one up rather quickly, and though going through a book too fast can be lamentable, it does profess to a good story. Time travel stories aren’t easy to write due to the need to keep all your ducks in a row (so as not to create an unintended paradox), but the author laid that all out well here, leaving little (at least insofar as the plot is concerned) to misunderstanding. I can’t say I became heavily attached to Nora (who I would prefer never to cross for her combat prowess), Mason, and the crew, but they were solid enough characters with enough depth to make me want to see their story through.
And that brings me to my first issue—the ending. In order to avoid spoilers I can’t say much, other than to express a certain lack of fulfillment. If this is meant to be book one of a longer story so be it, but I went in without any such understanding, and if it ends here…well, I was hoping for more. We’re not talking about a brick-wall cliffhanger tease here; I was just left turning the page, looking for chapter 31.
Next up—and I can only be so forgiving about this in a fully published work—always make sure to do a careful proofread, and then another by someone other than yourself, before a book goes to print. There were simply too many typos in this manuscript for my taste—I’m always willing to forgive a few just because that’s the nature of the publishing beast, but this book went well over my allowable threshold. Further, a number of passages were a bit difficult to follow along with for grammatical issues and a general lack of flow. This made the whole thing feel like a rushed project to me, which does justice neither for the author's prowess (of which I can clearly see storytelling power here) nor the potential reader base. I consider the third star a bit of extra for the honest attempt.
In short—Lapse is a good story with a clever premise; one that the eye of an editor could do a lot for. I hope it gets another edition in the future with the technical work it needs to really shine. If there is a sequel at some point, I’d be interested in checking it out.
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