Tim Major's You Don't Belong Here was published by Snowbooks in September 2016.
Information about Tim Major:
Tim Major lives in Oxford in the UK with his wife and two young sons. His love of speculative fiction is the product of a childhood diet of classic Doctor Who episodes and an early encounter with Triffids.
Tim’s time-travel novel, You Don’t Belong Here, was published by Snowbooks in September 2016. He has also released two novellas, Blighters (Abaddon) and Carus & Mitch (Omnium Gatherum) - the latter was shortlisted for a This Is Horror Award. His short stories have featured in Interzone, the British Fantasy Society’s Horizons and numerous anthologies. He is the Editor of the UK SF magazine, The Singularity.
Click here to visit his official website.
Information about You Don't Belong Here:
Daniel Faint is on the run with a stolen time machine. As the house-sitter of a remote Cumbrian mansion, he hopes to hide and experiment with the machine. But is the Manor being watched by locals, his twin brother or even himself? Daniel is terrified about what the future may hold but, as he discovers, there can be no going back.
A REVIEW OF TIM MAJOR'S YOU DON'T BELONG HERE
Tim Major's You Don't Belong Here is an interesting piece of time travel fiction, because it's a combination of science fiction, thriller and mystery elements. It's an entertaining novel for everyone who enjoys reading time travel stories.
The problem with time travel novels is that you seldom find anything original or fresh in them, because authors tend to recycle familiar elements too much. This is not actually a big problem, because many time travel novels are entertaining and worth reading, but sometimes you just want to read something that has not been written dozens and dozens of times over and over again. I'm not an expert on time travel novels, but in my opinion You Don't Belong Here feels delightfully different from the time travel novels that have been published recently, because it has freshness and it's fluently written entertainment.
I admit that I'm difficult to please when it comes to time travel novels, because I've been disappointed with a few novels and haven't liked the authors' way of handling time travel elements, because they've paid attention to wrong things. Fortunately, You Don't Belong Here was an intriguing and pleasant surprise for me, because I found myself enjoying the gradually unfolding story and wanted to know what happens to the protagonist. It's nice that the author has managed to write a story that is entertaining and sufficiently mysterious.
Here's a bit of information about the story:
Daniel Faint has stolen a time machine from a laboratory in Oxford and is putting as much distance between him and the lab as possible. He is worried that something will happen to the time machine, so he is driving slowly and feels a bit paranoid about speed cameras taking pictures. He knows that he is a thief now and can't allow himself to get caught for what he has done. He finds a safe place for the time machine when he acquires a job as a housesitter at a large Cumbrian manor, which will be empty during the summer. He doesn't know anything about how to use the time machine and what to do with it, but he begins to experiment with it...
This is the beginning of a gently flowing story that gradually becomes increasingly intriguing.
The characterisation works well, because Daniel Faint is described as a person who has more than a bit of problems with his life. He is the only one to blame for what has happened to him, because he has made a mess of his life. I think it's great that Daniel is a flawed person who has problems, because it's interesting to read about him and his life.
I like Tim Major's writing style, because he writes fluent prose. It's great that he doesn't rush into action, but takes his time to introduce Daniel to his readers before anything significant begins to happen. To be totally honest, this is actually a very good thing, because I don't much care for time travel novels, in which everything happens at once and the reader is left feeling baffled by why the author has to maintain constant fast-paced action. I admire the author for not hurrying with the story.
The author handles various aspects of the story well. For example, he writes fluently about how Daniel experiments with the time machine and tries to figure out how it works. He also writes well about what happens between Daniel and other characters, and he spices up the story with mystery elements.
This novel has a good atmosphere, because the author slowly builds up suspense and describes the happenings in an engaging way. The isolated manor serves as a perfect setting for the story, because it adds a bit of creepiness to the storyline.
I give this novel strong four stars on the scale from one to five stars, because I enjoyed reading it and found it entertaining. I think that Tim Major has the makings of a good speculative fiction novelist, because he knows how to entertain his readers and he has a gift for storytelling.
Tim Major's You Don't Belong Here will be of interest to readers who enjoy time travel stories and want to read something a bit different. The gradually unfolding story will keep readers entertained, because the author drops readers into the middle of Daniel's life and lets them wonder what will happen to him. When you begin to read this novel, you'll soon find yourself immersed in the story.
My final words are:
Tim Major's You Don't Belong Here is a good and intriguingly fresh time travel novel!