The River of No Return
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The River of No Return by Bee Ridgway
1 of 5 stars (abandoned 55% through)
After jumping forward 200 years, a man is sent back to 1815 by a mysterious Guild in order to stop a group of time travelers with a different agenda.
Instead of the of the girl with the dark eyes he had the Guild. The generous foster mother of time’s little orphans. Generous and controlling… Controlling and maybe even murderous.
I really wanted to like this book. Time travel, Regency era England, a mysterious society that controls time travel, what more could you ask for?
Well, for one, I could have asked for better characters. Maybe it’s intentional, but the characters in this novel all seemed like horrible hypocrites. I felt no sympathy for the arrogant playboy hero who gets offended when he’s asked to play the part of… an arrogant playboy. I could not relate to the “noble and virtuous” heroine who spends the first half of the novel fighting fiercely to protect her reputation, and then within the course of a few pages throws herself at the hero, and yet still manages to look down on other women for doing the same thing. Even the minor characters were dualistic. They all irritated me, and it made it difficult for me to care about their fates.
Whereas the plot should have been exciting, the pacing seemed terribly slow. After reading 200 pages, I couldn’t for the life of me understand what took up so many words! I know for certain, though, that at least a couple of those pages were spent explaining the “time is a river” analogy (which is a very good one, and fits within my own time travel theories, but was over-explained ad nauseum).
The final straw for me was the sexual content. It was dealt with in a way that was unnecessarily crude and diminished my opinions of the characters (see my paragraph on characterization above). I stopped reading when it was revealed that the Guild’s big plan for bringing the protagonist back into the past was so that he could bed someone.
When I checked out other reviews on Goodreads, and a couple people noted that it ended on a cliffhanger, poised for a sequel, I threw in the towel. No point in finishing a book I’m not enjoying if the ending doesn’t even resolve anything.