Author: Ryan Graudin
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Date of publication: September 19th, 2017
Genre: Young Adult
Number of pages: 464
POV: 3rd person
Book synopsis (from Goodreads):
Time flies when you’re plundering history.
Farway Gaius McCarthy was born outside of time. The son of a time-traveling Recorder from 2354 AD and a gladiator living in Rome in 95 AD, Far’s birth defies the laws of nature. Exploring history himself is all he’s ever wanted, and after failing his final time-traveling exam Far takes a position commanding a ship with a crew of his friends as part of a black market operation to steal valuables from the past.
But during a heist on the sinking Titanic, Far meets a mysterious girl who always seems to be one step ahead of him. Armed with the knowledge that will bring Far’s very existence into question, she will lead Far and his team on a race through time to discover a frightening truth: History is not as steady as it seems.
In this heart-stopping adventure, Ryan Graudin has created a fast-paced world that defies time and space.
Trigger Warning: None
I am a huge fan of sci-fiction and I love space opera. Add in the fact that it is young adult and I was very excited to start reading Invictus. So I was a little surprised and disappointed when I couldn’t get into the book until about midway through. I know that it is because I felt that the book crept until about midway. It was after Eliot revealed everything that I felt the book picked up steam and I actually got into reading it.
I thought the plot of the book was good. Time travel has been discovered and is being used. People can go back in time to sight see. Then there are the people who go back in time to record the events live for the people in the future to study. This is where Farway’s story starts. His mother, Empra, is a Recorder and she has done the unthinkable. She has fallen in love with a gladiator named Gaius and has gotten pregnant. After witnessing a fight in which Gaius dies, Empra goes into labor. She delivers Farway on her ship in a place called the Grid. Which is outside of time. So, a great start to the book. It fell flat and I had a very hard time keeping my attention on it until Eliot dropped a bombshell on Farway and his crew. Then the book picked up steam and I couldn’t put it down until it ended.
I do think that Invictus was a great space opera. It fills in that genre very well. The time travel was written wonderfully and I thought that it was a very different take on that. I thought the usage of camaflouged ships was great. But I didn’t care for the YA part of it.
Farway got on my nerves from page one but I liked him. I thought that he was very immature. That part of him grated on my nerves. I did think that he was a good captain and he did put his crew first. He also had good instincts about people. I mean, he was right about Eliot. But in the end, he was willing to do whatever he could to save his mother and his world.
Eliot had some brass ones, let me tell you. She stole the book that Farway trying to find on the Titanic. She then used it as a bargaining chip to get aboard the Invictus. I was surprised as Farway and his crew about not only who Eliot was by why she was there.
Surprisingly, for a YA book, there is sex. Farway and Priya have sex a few times. The book doesn’t get into details but you definitely know what they were doing. The romance between Priya and Farway was sweet and very heartfelt. I had tears in my eyes during the scene where Priya…..well, you need to read the book.
The end of the book was very heartfelt and I got a little emotional during it. Not going to say anything but I did like how the storylines were resolved.
My Summary of Invictus:
Invictus didn’t hold my attention as it should have. The first half of the book seemed to drag and only picked up speed after a crucial scene in the middle of the book. I did think that it was wonderfully written with rich dialogue between the characters. I am disappointed that I just didn’t like it as much as I should have.
Will I reread: Maybe
Will I recommend to family and friends: Yes
Age range: Older Teen
Why: Mild violence and sexual situations. Nothing graphic but you know that the two characters are having sex
I would like to thank Ryan Graudin, Little, Brown Books for Young Readers and NetGalley for allowing me to read Invictus
Any and all opinions expressed in this review of Invictus are mine and mine alone
**I chose to leave this review after reading an advance reader copy**