Book Review: Timeless by Alexandra Monir

TIMELESS by Alexandra Monir
Series: Timeless, #1
Publication Date: January 11, 2011

Summary: When tragedy strikes Michele Windsor’s world, she is forced to uproot her life and move across the country to New York City, to live with the wealthy, aristocratic grandparents she’s never met. In their old Fifth Avenue mansion filled with a century’s worth of family secrets, Michele discovers a diary that hurtles her back in time to the year 1910. There, in the midst of the glamorous Gilded Age, Michele meets the young man with striking blue eyes who has haunted her dreams all her life – a man she always wished was real, but never imagined could actually exist. And she finds herself falling for him, into an otherworldly, time-crossed romance.

Michele is soon leading a double life, struggling to balance her contemporary high school world with her escapes into the past. But when she stumbles upon a terrible discovery, she is propelled on a race through history to save the boy she loves – a quest that will determine the fate of both of their lives.

Review Overview:

  • Reads more like a contemporary novel than a historical fiction novel
  • Lack of development in the romance; “love at first sight”
  • Loved reading about New York City in the early 1900s
  • Wasn’t aware that this was a series; ending left a lot of plot holes / unresolved

After moving across the country to New York City, Michele discovers a way into the past where she meets the love of her life during the Gilded Age. Michele lives both lives as she travels back and forth the early 1900s and 2010. Though TIMELESS sounds like a historical read, the writing style comes across as contemporary. As a reader of historical fiction, I had a tough time getting into Alexandra Monir’s writing. I found all the “teen talk” to be really forced to the point of annoying and some parts just seemed cliche, to be honest. However, Monir does a spectacular job of bringing readers into the past with her vivid descriptions of early 20th century life.

TIMELESS is being promoted as a romance story that spans between two different times. I was expecting it to be romantic and passionate, but it fell short. I wasn’t a fan of the romance between Michele and Philip. I just didn’t feel the chemistry at all between them. Love at first sight didn’t work for me in this book. I kind of felt that their interactions were to the point of corny, but that’s just me. I was curious as to how their relationship would turn out, but I wasn’t giddy with excitement to read about them.

My favorite part of the book is reading about the spectacular sights of New York City in the early 1900s. Living in New York, I can’t even begin to imagine what the city was like a century ago. Monir paints the city beautifully in her descriptions. I can almost picture New York City in the 20th century in my mind. I would love to have traveled back in time to see this for myself.

I was very disappointed with the ending of TIMELESS, but I should add that I didn’t know that this was part of a series. I thought it would have been an amazing stand-alone, but I guess not. Very little was resolved at the end. The sequel will probably entail tying up lose ends, but at this point, I don’t think I’ll be reading on to the next one. I would have liked this book more if it just ended.

Fans of historical, contemporary, and time travel will enjoy this read.

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  1. I hate when I find out a book is part of a series when it doesn’t seem like it should be. I really want to read this one, though, even though its a series (I didn’t know it was, and I think I would prefer if it was a standalone as well).

  2. Thanks for the honest review! I’m sorry you didn’t like, but I can definitely understand why you didn’t. Every book is not for every person. Thank you for the link, too!

  3. I didn’t realize this was part of a series either. Thank you for the warning. I think now I’ll wait until all of the books are published. I’m also not too excited now hearing about the contemporary feel and insta-love romance.

  4. There were so many details in this book, historically, and I was amazed at the amount of research the author must have done to make these different time periods and places come to life. She did a phenomenal job with this. It gave the novel a vibrancy that was riveting.

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