Author: aspen bassett
Publisher: Smith Publicity, Tea First
View Book At Goodreads
Penelope Grace, usually forgotten under the shadow of her twin sister's perfection, tries her hardest to hide her freakish ability to see into anyone's soul. Until she senses an unusual energy like a human shaped void in the universe. When Penny investigates the source, she gets tossed through a crack in time along with the cute boy next door. The Void follows them through history, increasing the dangers as if testing Penny. But what is it testing for? And why does it claim to know her better than even she knows herself? Even as Penny searches for answers, she must fight to survive the tragedies of both the past and future in order to get back home. (Netgalley.)
I received a digital ARC of ‘A Penny Lost’ from Netgalley in exchange for my honest review.
I tried really hard with this book. I really did. I got to 52%. But as interesting as the plot premise was, A Penny Lost just didn’t work out for me. I really wanted it to, because I find time-travel an intriguing theme and when it’s done well, the results can be amazing.
The writing in A Penny Lost was quite nice. It flowed quite nicely and wasn’t too flowery or overly descriptive which was nice. It also worked nicely with the time travel element of the book.
The time travel part of the book was not actually the problem for me. The way it happened, with the mysterious void, and the negative energy makes sense in both time-travel ‘science’ and it was fairly realistic given Penny’s energy-reading talents.
Most of Penny’s risky-behaviours I put down to both her age and the fact that she was either scared wittless or really angry. Any combination of those will make you make decisions that aren’t the most rational. The fact that some of Penny’s decisions weren’t exactly rational worked for the story.
What really irked me about the story was that nothing was ever really explained. When things were explained, they were only ever partially explained, or the explanations didn’t really make a lot of sense. It also felt very disjointed. (Not so much the time-travel, as I stated earlier, that was done quite nicely.) But the randomly hopping from the Lusitana in WWI to some prison ship during the American Civil War, and the very specific but at the same time very random butterfly effects that Penny and Stranger caused – that really jostled me out of the book a few times. They broke one of the major rules of Time Travel – do not change anything because you don’t know what effect that might have on the future.
I was also kind of annoyed with Penny calling Stranger, Stranger. It’s a bit rude really. She could have called him by an actual name, even if it wasn’t his real name (since he couldn’t remember it).
In all, what could have been a great story was for me, let down by a plot that felt very disjointed and other small things that irked me as a reader. I would give A Penny Lost 2 1/2 stars if I was to rate it, but I don’t like to rate books I didn’t actually finish.