Into the Dim by Janet B. Taylor
Published by HMH Books for Young Readers on March 1, 2016
Genres: Young Adult, Fiction, Science Fiction, Time Travel, Historical
Pages: 432 Format: Hardcover Source: Library
When fragile, sixteen-year-old Hope Walton loses her mom to an earthquake overseas, her secluded world crumbles. Agreeing to spend the summer in Scotland, Hope discovers that her mother was more than a brilliant academic, but also a member of a secret society of time travelers. Trapped in the twelfth century in the age of Eleanor of Aquitaine, Hope has seventy-two hours to rescue her mother and get back to their own time. Along the way, her path collides with that of a mysterious boy who could be vital to her mission . . . or the key to Hope’s undoing.
With all the recent time travel book releases Into the Dim could have easily been lost in the land of forgotten books, but Janet Taylor’s story stands apart with a unique spin of science, history, and romance all wrapped up into one compelling narrative. There’s plenty of witty banter, a manor in the Scottish highlands, and higher stakes then the lives of a few individuals. Taylor brings it all to life with wonderful writing.
Let’s start with the center of this story, Hope Walton, for Into the Dim is her journey. Finding her mom, finding herself, finding her place. I was extremely fascinated by her eidetic memory and how she filtered through all of the information. Even how she dealt with her anxiety and claustrophobia. I loved the rest of the characters as well. Phoebe was so forward and honest, Collum quiet and strong. Then there’s sassy and mysterious Bran. All of them were just amazing!
I thought the mode of time travel in this one was cleverly constructed. Focusing more on the combination of science and unnatural elements as well as throwing Nicola Tesla into the mix. There were rules and structure with plenty of consequences if things were done wrong. With the added threat of people not leaving well enough alone, this book reflected humanity’s desire to push the boundaries no matter the cost. I’m glad Janet Taylor took the time to flesh it out.
To be honest I didn’t know much about Eleanor of Aquitaine before going into this book and that’s coming from a girl with a degree in history. Now that I’ve read this story I want to delve into her life and accomplishments. My research genes are firing on all cylinders and the itch to learn has returned. I have to praise any fictional work that has this impact on me. Plus a mention of Pliny the Elder and I was totally sold.
Overall I really enjoyed Janet Taylor’s Into the Dim. Interesting characters and an exciting historical time frame make this a great story. Even if the plot was a bit predictable in parts, it never slowed down my desire to keep reading. I would definitely recommend this if you love history and time travel and I’m looking forward to jump back into the next installment for more adventures!
So, have you read Into the Dim yet? How much did you know about Eleanor of Aquitaine? Any history lovers out there? Let me know in the comments below!