Publisher: Bloomsbury Childrens
Publication date: 1st August 2013
My rating: 5 stars
Em is locked in a bare, cold cell with no comforts. Finn is in the cell next door. The Doctor is keeping them there until they tell him what he wants to know. Trouble is, what he wants to know hasn't happened yet. Em and Finn have a shared past, but no future unless they can find a way out. The present is torture - being kept apart, overhearing each other's anguish as the Doctor relentlessly seeks answers. There's no way back from here, to what they used to be, the world they used to know. Then Em finds a note in her cell which changes everything. It's from her future self and contains some simple but very clear instructions. Em must travel back in time to avert a tragedy that's about to unfold. Worse, she has to pursue and kill the boy she loves to change the future.
Wow this book was utterly amazing. I know I’ve read some great reads this year, but All Our Yesterdays will definitely stand out from among the rest for a long time to come. What I loved most about this book was that I hardly knew anything about it before going into it. I read the blurb ages ago and was totally excited, but when I started reading I was utterly amazed and surprised with what Terrill had planned for us.
The basic crux of the story is time travel, two characters Em and Finn are dedicated to changing the future, it’s crucial they do this, as all the future entails for them is torture, and heartache, it is pretty much a bleak future no one would ever wish upon. At first I had no clue as why Finn and Em were hell bent on changing the past, we were given a brief snippet into what they had to deal with, but as the story progressed we got to learn the horrible truth I was so surprised but also a little bit hurt. Because the story alternates with flashbacks to what’s happened in the future and what’s happened in the past, I found it so hard to comprehend just how significantly a character could change. We were shown painstakingly obvious evidence right in front of our eyes, but maybe because I didn’t want to accept that this particular character in the past and in the future could be the same person. It kind of broke my heart, as I actually started this book with this character being my favourite. They did have a lot to deal with and so I could fully understand their slowly changing behaviour. But they were so lost I just wanted to hug them. And then I felt even more wretched for feeling sorry for them when I was given snippets of their tender and caring side after everything Em and Finn had been through. Seriously Terrill sure knows how to trample all over your heart.
Finn and Em were amazing characters, I adore the insecure and under confident Em in the past and the tough and still torn Em of the future. She reminded me a bit of Tris from the Divergent series, she was at first always unsure about herself, but she proved herself to be one fearless and clever character. I loved the banter between her character and Finn, and just their entire relationship; it had changed so significantly that I was just glad they were constantly there for one another.
The entire concept that Terrill created was just so unique in my eyes. I’m not typically a person who reads time travel books, but Terrill’s immense world building and gorgeous writing lured me in from the very first page. (You should have seen my kindle it was full with highlights of passages which ripped my heart). Terrill has also the knack of creating characters that you never want to let go, the characters in this book were fresh, charismatic and always bringing something different. I adored watching their friendships develop and how each character tried to deal with so much inner turmoil along the way.
All Our Yesterdays was a wonderfully executed debut, it had everything I love reading about; flawless characters which show exceptional growth, a scary but totally realistic world, non- stop action, a story which kept me on my toes with me having no idea which way things could end and of course a nice pinch of heartache. But it also had many things which make me eager to jump into books of a similar genre. Terrill has weaved a beautiful story in All Our Yesterdays and for that I encourage you all to pick it up.
Also to give you all a heads up I'll be away at Kent/London for the next couple of days, I will have a review up one day next week, but probably won't be around to comment, I'll probably be lurking around Twitter as usual, but will be back commenting hopefully next Friday!