I received a copy of this book for free from the Publisher in exchange for an unbiased and honest review.
The Time Collector by Gwendolyn Womack
Published by Picador on April 16, 2019
Genres: Historical Fiction
A thrilling page-turner from Gwendolyn Womack, the USA Today bestselling author of The Fortune Teller
"The Time Collector's fast pace and fascinating premise will delight history and romance lovers."―Yangsze Choo, New York Times bestselling author of The Ghost Bride and The Night Tiger
Travel through time with the touch of a hand.
Roan West can perceive the past of any object he touches. A highly skilled psychometrist, he uses his talents to find and sell valuable antiques, but his quiet life in New Orleans is about to change. Stuart, a fellow psychometrist and Roan's close friend, has used his own abilities to unearth several "ooparts"―out-of-place artifacts that challenge recorded history. Soon after the discovery, Stuart disappears, making him one of several pyschometrists who have recently died or vanished. When Roan comes across a viral video of a young woman who has discovered a priceless pocket watch just by "sensing" it, he knows he has to warn her―but will Melicent Tilpin listen? And can Roan find Stuart before it's too late? The quest for answers will lead Roan and Melicent around the world, bringing them closer to each other and a startling truth.
When I was approached to read and review The Time Collector by Gwendolyn Womack I immediately knew that I had to give this story a chance. I’m not exactly sure if it was its synopsis or the mystery I could feel waiting to be told and shared with readers that pulled me in, but whatever it was I am glad that I took the time to try out this new-to-me author and genre.
Unbeknownst to me, the cover that was shared with me by the publicist was different than the cover I received of the paperback version. It was both hilarious and surprising to find out that I had already received the advance copy in one of those random packages I get from publishers. Now, I have two advance copies along with the finished copy they recently sent me. (Thank you Ms. Womack and Picador for your generosity!!). But, having two copies of the advance version of The Time Collector I came up with the idea that I would use one of the copies to take notes while reading and the other would either be something I add to my giveaway collection or to my never ending collection of books.
In taking notes while reading I felt more connected to the characters of The Time Collector and more engaged with the story. The first note I made while reading came from a passage about one of the main characters, Roan West:
“Roan hid a smile at the man’s appraisal. He was used to getting that look, being well over six feet, with dark hair that cut a dramatic swath to his shoulders. He always wore black, a severe choice, but he found it also helped detract from the fact that he always wore gloves.”
When I read this the thought I had was ‘his appearance is attention grabbing.’ I know the passage wasn’t much to go on but for some reason when I read it I had a vision of what he looked like in my mind, which further added to fuel to my reading fire for The Time Collector.
Once the story started developing a little more I will say that I lost interest in the story as a whole, if that makes sense. The characters were interesting enough but the story became so complex to me that I found myself asking more questions and searching for answers than enjoying how easy the flow of The Time Collector was. The titles for each chapter helped in a way but the timestamps, or the absence of them for certain chapters, had me flipping backwards to make sure I hadn’t missed anything.
Also, while the concept of the world being centered around psychometrists, I was more interested in the struggles of Melicent and the schemes her and her brother would get up to. I don’t really know why this particular part of the characters’ story was what I grabbed on to, but since their introduction I was hoping for more and I began to resent any mention of Roan, Stuart, and quite a few of the other characters.
The Time Collector by Gwendolyn Womack was a fascinating read, and definitely different than anything I’ve ever read before. I could see what the author was trying to shoot for but I think for the type of reader I am, I felt that she missed the mark with me. From what I’ve seen on Goodreads I know my thoughts are in the minority, but my sincere hope is that if the synopsis sounds interesting to you that you’ll give the story a chance and create an opinion on it for yourself.