On the way back from the hospital, Andre’s dad asks him if he’s in pain. Of course he’s in pain. He may be cancer free, but he’s still got a new liver, and after living with it for six months, he’s pretty sure the dull ache in his gut is his new normal.
But what happens when they get back to the house is definitely not normal. He lies down for a nap, and wakes up in the 1960s. It’s still Boston, but not his Boston. Still his house, but not his house. In fact, it seems to belong to an attractive and somewhat odd boy named Michael who isn’t quite curious enough about how a boy from the 21st century ended up on his front lawn. As it turns out, the young man who donated Andre’s new liver belonged to a family of time travelers. And as Andre grows increasingly attached to Michael in his past, in the present, he must navigate the fraught relationship with Blake: his donor’s brother who is still grieving and resents being assigned to help Andre acclimate to time travel.
An original premise, heart-fluttering romance, thought-provoking themes, a funny and spirited narrator–this novel is a winner from page one. A true delight to read. The humor and quirky sci-fi angle cushion the heavier themes and subject matter. But the sci-fi is more than a gimmick. The shifts from past to present mirror symbolically Andre’s internal struggle to figure out what he wants from his future. Though it likely won’t satisfy hard sci-fi readers, fans of YA literary and realistic fiction will definitely want to pick this one up.