Review: Passenger by Alexandra Bracken

Author: Alexandra Bracken
Series: Passenger #1
Genre: YA, Fantasy, Sci-Fi, Time Travel, Romance
Release Date: January 5th 2016
Book Length: 486
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Passage, n.
i. A brief section of music composed of a series of notes and flourishes.
ii. A journey by water; a voyage.
iii. The transition from one place to another, across space and time.

In one devastating night, violin prodigy Etta Spencer loses everything she knows and loves. Thrust into an unfamiliar world by a stranger with a dangerous agenda, Etta is certain of only one thing: she has traveled not just miles but years from home. And she’s inherited a legacy she knows nothing about from a family whose existence she’s never heard of. Until now.

Nicholas Carter is content with his life at sea, free from the Ironwoods—a powerful family in the colonies—and the servitude he’s known at their hands. But with the arrival of an unusual passenger on his ship comes the insistent pull of the past that he can’t escape and the family that won’t let him go so easily. Now the Ironwoods are searching for a stolen object of untold value, one they believe only Etta, Nicholas’ passenger, can find. In order to protect her, he must ensure she brings it back to them— whether she wants to or not.

Together, Etta and Nicholas embark on a perilous journey across centuries and continents, piecing together clues left behind by the traveler who will do anything to keep the object out of the Ironwoods’ grasp. But as they get closer to the truth of their search, and the deadly game the Ironwoods are play­ing, treacherous forces threaten to sep­arate Etta not only from Nicholas but from her path home . . . forever


Etta Spencer is an exceptional violin prodigy; she works hard to perfect her craft and now it’s finally paying off as she’s expected to make her grand debut. But before that can happen Etta is kidnapped and thrust into another time and century, it turns out that Etta is a Passenger – a person who can travel through time. Alone and lost in the past Etta must get back to her real time but in order to do that she must help the ruthless family of Ironwoods on a quest that may destroy the very fabric of her world.

            Etta was such a great MC, she’s sassy, fierce and passionate but what I loved most about her by far was her quick-fire nature, don’t get me wrong Etta is clearly a well educated girl but she’s not afraid to speak whatever comes to her mind – there was literally a scene were I screamed fuck yeah! – and she usually says what I internally scream at the book.
“I've never slapped anyone before,' she admitted.
'How did you find the experience?'
'It would have been more satisfying if he'd gone flying out of his seat like I imagined.”
Bracken’s writing has completely changed since her earlier series and it’s for the better, my only complaint was that there was too much of it. The chapters were long and far between and at times it became a chore to read. I also would have loved some more dialogue; Bracken’s writing makes quick and vivid details of all the time travelling places Etta visits but her ability to expertly write witty exchanges between characters is flawless and I just wanted more and more of it.
“The melody of her heart had no name; it was quick, and light. It rolled with the waves, falling as the breath left his chest, rising as he inhaled. It was the rain sliding down the glass; the fog spreading its fingers over the water. The creaking of a ship's great body. The secrets whispered by the wind, and the unseen life that moved below. It was the flame of one last candle.”
Beautiful right?

            For you romance lovers? You guys are in for a real treat!! I’m sure this has been said before but I am saying again, we need more characters of colour in YA, so brava to Bracken for creating African American dreamboat Nicholas. The romance between Etta and Nicholas has the perfect balance of weariness and attraction, it was not instant and all consuming, it was slow and left lots of room for the pair to get to know each other…. After all they’re from compeletly different worlds/times!
“You cannot fathom the distance I would travel for you.”
Passenger is a great start to what’s sure to be an enchanting series, I would definitely recommend it but I would say that you may want to take your time with it – the first hundred pages or so are slow, it may take a while to fully get to grips with the story but you will get there trust me. You can immediately tell that a lot of time and research had gone in to making this book and shows it in bucket loads, lovers of history will enjoy the details shown in the different era’s when Etta time travels. I only wished for more action or more progression with the plot but as this is a duo-logy I'm sure to get that in Wayfarer!

Share This:


  1. I still have yet to read her other series...*flees in shame*...but I plan to read it this summer, and then go straight to this book! I've heard nothing but good things, and I'm sure I won't be disappointed :)

    1. I have seen your TBR lately and there is on shame, there isn't freaking time to read. Do you think all authors could just stop writing for a few weeks so we can catch up? hahaha.

  2. This book is high on my TBR list, and I really can't wait to get a copy of this. It just seems so good! All reviews about this book have been positive, so I'm sure it's a great book.

    1. It really is great it just have a tough start, I really hope you enjoy it :D

  3. I was unsure about whether I was going to enjoy this or not, because I've heard a lot of people talk about the very lengthy descriptions. Usually I struggle to get through writing like that, because I find I often get bored. I love music, and play an instrument myself, which makes it appeal even more to me. I'm just not sure if I will enjoy it? I like the sound of a POC love interest though! :D

    Denise | The Bibliolater

    1. Unfortunately they're right, it was be a bit too wordy but it's such an enjoyable book, I just think you have to be willing to overlook a few things sad. Oh if you play an instrument then I think you will love this, Etta is such a dedicated player and her love for music made me wish I could play an instrument, it's infectious! haha, oh me too Denise, isn't it great to have POC in YA, utterly thrilled with this!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...