I won a free copy of TimeSplash largely thanks to my utter silliness during a contest and was hugely excited about it all — particularly because I’ve been looking into time travel dilemmas myself for a few short stories I am working on. And I have to say I wasn’t disappointed: Graham Storrs has come up with an original and fascinating take on time travel which — if abused — can go disastrously wrong. What better setting for a science fiction thriller which kept me up reading until 4am in the morning?
It started out as a game, something underground and edgy and ‘cool’. Then time travelling hit the mainstream and became the ultimate terrorist weapon. Scarred by their experiences with time travelling, Jay and Sandra are thrown together in what is to become the biggest manhunt in history: the search for Sniper, Sandra’s ex-boyfriend and a notorious terrorist.
Set in the near-future, the novel is action-packed, full of political intrigue and a sprinkling of romance. Look out — science fiction is far from dead!
TimeSplash is highly ambitious in its scope, and the key to its success is Storrs’ intriguing take on time travel, which is integrated seamlessly into the storyline, avoiding the off-putting technicality of so much science fiction. In short: people can be ‘lobbed’ back in time for short periods, only to be eventually yanked back to the present. While you’re in the past, you cannot change the timeline — well, not permanently. You can go back and kill your mother, creating a temporary paradox, but the timeline will smoothen out and return to its original state. The problem is, the mess caused by that paradox will follow you home and wreck destruction on the present. Add some time travelling addicts into the mix and you have a recipe for disaster.
Despite such a fascinating premise, TimeSplash is ultimately a very human tale about finding bravery through fear, and never giving up. Jay, Sandra, and the host of other (mostly European) characters are vividly portrayed: you cannot help but empathize with their plights, including when it comes to the villains. It certainly helps that the settings were so strongly evocative, particularly the scenes in London — living in London myself, there was a pleasurable thrill in reading about places I have visited.
In sum, highly recommended for science fiction and thriller enthusiasts alike, and even those undecided. Go buy it!
So, Mr. Storrs: where’s my sequel?
This book is one of my 100+ Reading Challenge!
[EDIT: Check out the follow up interview with Graham himself!]