Past imperfect

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 30 Aug 2018

Member Reviews

Unfortunately, this one didn’t work for me at all. The characters consistently made the least sensical choices possible, and the plot was a confusing mess. I even went back and re-read the first book to see if it would help (it did not). Ms. Pack’s writing skills are better served in other settings.
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Sitting down to write this review, I feel like I'm about to damn it with faint praise. There was nothing wrong with this book. It's characters were okay. The premise was mostly unpromlematic, and well content warned. The pacing was good enough. 

The issue was, after In The Present Tense established the world and the kind of time travelling that happened with two of the main characters in this book, Past Imperfect kinda fell... flat. 

I'm not saying that they didn't need to defeat the bad guy. But this book read a lot like the middle part of the Lord of the Rings trilogy, with a lot of running around trying to get the information they needed to put away the bad guy. Then, in the end, that information was pretty much disregarded because they managed to put him away in a different way anyway. 

It was pretty much unsatisfying.
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I honestly couldn't enjoy this book as much as I would've liked to because this is the second book in the series and for some reason I wasn't able to access the 1st one on any store here. Disappointing really. But from what I gathered, the premise of the story is very promising.
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Past Imperfect takes place immediately following the aftermath of Present Tense and we see Miles and Bethany on the run from Dr. Branagan and his cohorts--scientists who have been conducting illegal experiments on children for decades under the guise of mental health professionals.

This time we get Bethany's PoV added alongside Miles, Adam, and Ana, which gives us a better insight into her schizophrenia and the horrific things she's experienced at the hands of Branagan. She's probably the most interesting character in the story, and while I can't speak for the validity of the depiction of schizophrenia, I do feel it was done respectfully. You can empathize with her struggles, both within and without, which is more than I can say for the other characters.

And that's more or less where the positives end.

I complained in my review for Present Tense that the characters felt like puppets being shoehorned into a story that doesn't quite fit them. Well, in Past Imperfect, we get less of the time travel and more of the puppetry, which is rather detrimental because the time travel was the best part of Book 1.

For example, at one point in the story Ana tearfully confesses to Miles that she's been cheating on him ever since she'd sent him off to the evil mental facility. And Miles, after a brief exclamation of confusion, makes a joke that the man she's been cheating with (Miles' boss) has a "great ass." Ana acts embarrassed, more jokes are had, and everyone's happy with the situation. 

There are several other moments like this that made me wonder whether I was a reading a written adaptation of a bad soap opera envisioned by aliens, because no human acts like this. We get sudden declarations of love, an equally sudden reveal that one of the side characters have been a spy for the villains all along (because of course)--and all throughout I couldn't decide whether to laugh or slowly grind my head through the nearest wall.

The other major problem was that I couldn't take the bad guys seriously. Dr. Branagan isn't quite the mustache-twirling villain, but his fingers are poised right on the tip of said mustache. The same goes for his underlings. Their personalities all begin and end at "evil scientists who experiment on kids," and it's kind of hard to feel concerned for the main characters when their enemies seem hell-bent on channeling the cheesiness of old scifi cartoon villains.

And most of all? I was bored. There's no tension, no credible motives, and overall, not a whole lot to keep me invested in the story. And that's incredibly disappointing because I found the initial premise of the series really quite interesting and I feel like there was a lot of potential to be tapped here.
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The second part of a LGBTQ+  duology , this book blends romance with science fiction and time travel to create a non stop thrill ride. 
(A word of warning, it is necessary to read the first book of the duology  " In the Present Tense" before jumping into this one, but don't let that hold you back, its a fun ride! )
Taking up right from where In The Present Tense left off, once again we join Miles and Bethany as they try to escape from the clutches of the evil doctor who is trying to use them as human guinea pigs because of their time travel abilities. The story hits the ground running and does not let up until the final chapter, as we flash backwards and forwards in time and from one character's perspective to another. While this jumping around could have been disconcerting to the reader, it is handled skillfully and the fast pace just adds to the tension of the story, making the book a real page turner. All the characters we came to know and care about in the first book return, and as the relationships and dynamics between them develop , it is really rewarding as a reader to see them grow and develop. 
A perfect ending to the story , I really enjoyed this book, which I read courtesy of NetGalley and the publisher, all opinions are my own.
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*~~*ARC kindly provided to me for an honest review *~~*

- Review to come

Review originally posted on my blog with added content on Mikku-chan / A world full of words
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Adam and Miles continue to be an awesome pair of characters, but Bethany stole my heart once again. Her no bullshit attitude gets me every time!

I'd been so eager to read this one after I read it's prequel. The wait for NetGalley's approval had been a difficult one. I don't know what I'd have done if they had declined my request!

Past Imperfect had more adventure, more content and more everything! It swept me away right from the beginning and I didn't rest until I reached the end—except for those times when my mom wouldn't let me go!

The one character that developed massively was Ana. From hating her in the last book, I came to kinda liking her. She developed a lot in the span of one book, and I definitely prefer this version of her.

Past Imperfect was the perfect ending to the duology. Everything was wrapped up nicely, and everyone who deserves a happy ending got one.

Past Imperfect did not let me down in the slightest, and I'm so glad I got a chance to read it!
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