Standalone. Month9Books (Sept. 2013) NetGalley
Jenny Kramer knows she isn't normal. After all, not everybody can see the past lives of people around them.
When she befriends Ben Daulton, resident new boy, the pair stumble on an old music box with instructions for “mesmerization” and discover they may have more in common than they thought. Like a past life.
Using the instructions in the music box, Ben and Jenny share a dream that transports them to Romanov Russia and leads them to believe they have been there together before. But they weren't alone. Nikolai, the mysterious young man Jenny has been seeing in her own dreams was there, too. When Nikolai appears next door, Jenny is forced to acknowledge that he has traveled through time and space to find her. Doing so means he has defied the laws of time, and the Order, an ominous organization tasked with keeping people in the correct time, is determined to send him back.
While Ben, Jenny and Nikolai race against the clock - and the Order - Jenny and Nikolai discover a link that joins them in life - and beyond death.
Endless was not at all what I expected. I completely forgot what it was about before I started reading it so that might clue you in on my "sudden" unexpected feeling coming from this book. Endless is about a girl named Jenny who doesn't like to touch people because when she does she sees images of that persons life - more accurately she sees people's past life when she so much as grazes them with her fingertips. Then events occur where she discovers who she was in her own past life and two boys that she should have no connection to, become a close part of figuring out who she is because they were there in her dreams of her past life as a Romanov.
Now what is so awesome about Endless is that it had the paranormal elements with Jenny's powers to see past lives and it had flashbacks of Jenny's life as a Romanov and on top of all that there was this shady secret society that controlled time travel which has something to do with Jenny's late mother. There so much in this story but it all blends together and works remarkably well. I was truly impressed by how absorbed I was in this story.
Time travel is usually a no-no for me because it makes me nervous. I don't like it. I don't trust it. Time travel should stay in books and movies and away from me. So it was a surprise to me that I enjoyed that part of the book. Although, the characters weren't time traveling. It just had to do with time travel like time travel was mostly talked about.
I loved the flashbacks/dreams about Jenny as a Romonov. I don't really know anything about the family apart from the movie Anastasia which isn't saying much although it's a great movie nonetheless. It was so interesting seeing her life at that time. It was mostly about her and a boy named Nikolai as well as the fear her family had for their safety. Jenny herself was a likable character and I enjoyed reading her discovery of who she is and where she fits in the world.
“It's like that sometimes for people who have had traumatic experiences in their past life. It's hard to move on, to belong, in one place when you have unresolved business in another.”
The romance was alright. I liked Nikolai but took me some time to get to know him and see how much he cares about Jenny. I still think that there is so much more I needed to learn about him. His character feels purposely like a fixture. Someone who is too faraway from his time so that he doesn't connect with me in the present time.
“I'd do it a thousand times over for one chance to spend my life with you.”
Ben also took time to warm up to. He was the moody bad boy type when he was first introduced. He became an invaluable secondary character with his own side story that was really appealing and that I was interested in seeing how it concluded.
“It was like his loneliness connected them more intimately and deeply than someone she could have known for years. Like she and Ben skipped over all the stuff people usually do when they first meet. All the fake smiles and putting their best foot forwards. As if they'd jumped right to knowing each other so well they could themselves even when they weren't at their best.”
Everything that made the story what it was kept me occupied in that fictional world. The only thing that was iffy was Nikolai whom was kind of up in the air at the end of the story. Actually everything didn't feel resolved. I felt like Endless needs a sequel but it doesn't look like it is going to happen which is unfortunate because it's a really good story that deserves one.