Review: The Girl from Everywhere

Review The Girl from Everywhere

The Girl from Everywhere, the debut novel by Heidi Heilig, puts family drama, relationship drama and the thrill of adventure aboard a time-traveling pirate ship. It’s a setup for an exciting story full of tension and suspense, and the book doesn’t disappoint.

From the publisher:

As the daughter of a time traveler, Nix has spent sixteen years sweeping across the globe and through the centuries aboard her father’s ship. Modern-day New York City, nineteenth-century Hawaii, other lands seen only in myth and legend—Nix has been to them all.

But when her father gambles with her very existence, it all may be about to end. Rae Carson meets Outlander in this epic debut fantasy.

If there is a map, Nix’s father can sail his ship, The Temptation, to any place and any time. But now that he’s uncovered the one map he’s always sought—1868 Honolulu, the year before Nix’s mother died in childbirth—Nix’s life, her entire existence, is at stake. No one knows what will happen if her father changes the past. It could erase Nix’s future, her dreams, her adventures . . . her connection with the charming Persian thief, Kash, who’s been part of their crew for two years.

The Girl from Everywhere does so many things right. The world building is woven carefully into the story rather than being dumped all at once. Understanding how the time traveling works, the importance of the maps, the mechanics of how it works, the ability to travel to real and imaginary places, it’s all revealed piecemeal, when that part of the backstory is important. You won’t feel lost or confused, but rather, curious about Nix’s world, and satisfied as more is revealed. At times, Nix and the reader are learning things for the first time at the same time.

I loved how The Girl from Everywhere misleads readers. Given the opportunity to make what would be the obvious choice (and what would probably be the choice made in most other books), Nix often decides to do something different. This kept the story’s twists and turns fresh.

Heilig also plants the seeds for potential conflict. The biggest, of course, is what will happen to Nix if her father is successful is going back in time and saving Nix’s mom. But there’s also potential conflict in her relationship with Kash. He’s a crew member, but there’s a hint of romance, and the question of her father’s disapproval.

I really enjoyed The Girl from Everywhere and I look forward to reading the sequel in this duology, The Ship Beyond Time

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