Genre: YA, Sci-fi (Time Travel)
“Enhancement, Not Alteration.”
― Meredith McCardle, The Eighth Guardian
Amanda Obermann. Code name Iris.
It’s Testing Day. The day that comes without warning, the day when all juniors and seniors at The Peel Academy undergo a series of intense physical and psychological tests to see if they’re ready to graduate and become government operatives. Amanda and her boyfriend Abe are top students, and they’ve just endured thirty-six hours of testing. But they’re juniors and don’t expect to graduate. That’ll happen next year, when they plan to join the CIA—together.
But when the graduates are announced, the results are shocking. Amanda has been chosen—the first junior in decades. And she receives the opportunity of a lifetime: to join a secret government organization called the Annum Guard and travel through time to change the course of history. But in order to become the Eighth Guardian in this exclusive group, Amanda must say good-bye to everything—her name, her family, and even Abe—forever.
Who is really behind the Annum Guard? And can she trust them with her life?
I think this book does not receive enough attention, it is severely underrated. I was hesitant to pick it up although I thought the synopsis sounded interesting because it is not talked about much and I saw a few reviews of people not happy with the book and not to add the fact that I have never read a time travel book.There were some slight issues I had with this book, but for the most part it was intriguing, action packed, fast paced and filled with fantastic shocks and twists!
Although I listen to this on audiobook, I could not put it down. It captivated me right away causing me to stay up for hours at a time listening instead of sleeping. The historical elements woven into the story were so well done paired with the time traveling and missions of Annum Guard really makes you think “What if?” It made me think of when people ask “if you could redo it or go back and chance the outcome, would you?”. It is so crazy how every fabric of our world weaves to together and how one small change can cause a chain reaction. The pacing of this book was fantastic and the book is layered with huge unexpected twists that keep you on edge wondering where McCardle is going to take the story. For the most part the world was greatly developed and all the components of the time travel were well thought out and the system was unique, but there were times I was a little confused because some small things did not stay consistent or match up.
The Annum Guard was an interesting organization. The way the whole system works, the outcomes, the awesome watches and everything else was just fantastic. Although there is a lot of the time in the book that Amanda/Iris spends alone and not much time with the other characters, they were all so well developed. McCardle did a phenomenal job with creating and developing complex and dynamic characters that fit into her story line and worked well for what she was trying to achieve (at least what I felt like she was trying to achieve.) I do admit there were times that I was annoyed and frustrated with Amanda/Iris. She was whiney and acted without thinking. Some of that I understand from the situations she was put in and there was some character growth seen with her as well, but she just was not the best protagonist (in my opinion). She was clever, intelligent and pulled off some kickass moves, but I enjoyed some of the other characters more and wish that she wasn’t so selfish.
Overall I thought this book was super great and needs more attention. If you have any interest in time travel or history this is a book for you. It was packed full of twists that kept the book gripping and leaving you with no idea what the outcome was going to be. It was sprinkled a little with romance, sassy and fierce characters, action packed scenes and leaves you wishing that you were able to project as well! It was brilliantly done, completely surprised me and I am so happy I picked it up!
Audiobook rating : 4/5