Sunday, 22 July 2018

Edge of Time by Thalia Kalkipsakis

Edge of Time by Thalia Kalkipsakis is the third and final book in the Lifespan of Starlight trilogy. It brings a long-awaited conclusion to the story that I started reading two years ago, with Lifespan of Starlight and the second book Split Infinity. After the cliffhanger at the end of the second book, two years was a long time to wait for the third book. Now that they're all out, I highly recommend reading them all in a row. Because it's an excellent series.

On the run from the government, Scout's decades-long disappearance is about to catch up with her …

When Scout returns from her longest time-jump yet, she finds that nothing has gone to plan. Her friends have been captured by the authoritarian regime, Mason is nowhere to be found, and something strange is happening each time she skips.

Then, deep in the city, a citizen is discovered whose chip exactly matches the first ever time-skipper. Who is she? How did she learn to time-skip? And could she hold the key to travelling backwards in time?

Uncovering the truth could offer Scout a chance to shape a new future – if she can let go of her past.

It took me a little while to orient myself at the start of this book after the gap in time (lol) since I read the previous book. The opening of Edge of Time is not overly burdened with reminders of the earlier books, but there were enough that I was able to get my bearings. I think I would have been sucked into the story more quickly if I had not had to wait so long before reading it. On the other hand, that's pretty much my biggest criticism of this book.

After Scout jumps into an unfamiliar future, the world is not magically a better place, alas. Instead, the dystopian future she started out in only keeps getting worse. (Poor future-Melbourne.) Also, all the plans laid by her and her friends go awry one way or another, leaving Scout dissatisfied with the world she's living in, when she has time to not be terrified of whatever the latest disaster is.

One aspect I found really interesting about the narrative structure is that there were several possibilities presented for how the book could end, but none which would simultaneously satisfy Scout and make a good ending for the series, right up until the actual ending started happening. Which was delightful. After a bit of uncertainty on my part that the ending would do the series justice, I was really pleased with how Kalkipsakis brought the book to a close.

I really enjoyed this series and I highly recommend it to fans of any combination of YA, dystopias and time travel. (Also, the covers are really pretty.) I recommend starting with the first book, Lifespan of Starlight, however, since this series is very much one continuous story (with cliffhangers) and not at all standalone chunks. It's three acts of the same story that don't work without the proceeding parts. I will be keeping an eye on any (YA) SF that Kalkipsakis writes in the future.

5 / 5 stars

First published: June 2018, Hardie Grant Egmont
Series: Lifespand of Starlight book 3 of 3
Format read: ePub
Source: Purchased from Kobo

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