Discover a New Book: Invictus by Ryan Graudin

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Book Review
by Ryan Graudin

This review is brought to you courtesy of Ryan Graudin, Erin Lindsay McCabe and @HistoricalFix.

In early 2016, I joined the team at Author Accelerator. One of our book coaches and USA Today bestseller, Erin Lindsay McCabe, picked up on the fact that I love historical fiction books. She invited me to the upcoming @HistoricalFix chat on Twitter. I joined the chat and was connecting with the authors, when Ryan Graudin, one of the guest authors on the chat that month, said something about her next book that caught my eye and it lead to a flurry of tweets.

…and then she said this…


And I zoomed right over to NetGalley to find and request Invictus.

I DEVOURED Invictus. It delivered exactly what Ryan promised in April–a fun romp through time and space ala Firefly and Doctor Who. At one point, I checked my reading progress and noticed I was 50% complete and I was devastated! I wanted the story to keep going. I had become so attached to the entire crew of the Invictus that I didn’t want to let them go, but I also wasn’t able to force myself to read slower.

Invictus grabs you right from the beginning. It’s a love story—a forbidden love kind of story. [swoons] The kind of love the results in “The Boy Who Should Not Have Been” (the title of the first chapter) which leads to, at first, minor technical issues and gradually become rip-in-time-and-space-funky-crack-in-the-wall issues. Paradoxes of a sort that take elements from Back to the Future and Futurama and stir them up into a time travel-parallel universe kind of smoothie.

Invictus is littered with colorful characters. Farway is the swoon-worthy cad who grows a bit as the story progresses. His crew is filled with smart talented folks who have their own hang-ups that provide some lightness and laughter to the story. Imogen’s humorous ship logs provide some additional insight into the crew and give some added facts about them like Imogen’s hair color and Gram’s Tetris high score. The crew even has a furry tagalong, a red panda name Saffron, which seems an unusual pet, but appears to be part cat-part-dog-part-raccoon.

The time travel-parallel universe elements Invictus are easy to navigate. It’s helpful that the jumps through time are explained by the crew so there isn’t that time travel confusion and jumble that sometimes happen where you glaze over and just go with it.

What’s best about Invictus is the balance between the serious moments, the heartfelt moments and the lighthearted moments. The story is never too dark or too funny. While the physical and emotional journey for Farway and the crew is never smooth, the reading journey goes so smoothly that it’s over, sadly, too quickly leaving you craving more time and more pages in to steal through time acquiring unusual objects in a stolen time machine with a fun-loving, outgoing crew.

A version of this review also appeared in The Gazette print edition on December 31, 2017.


The Quick Book Review

Discover a New Book: Invictus by Ryan Graudin


Author: Ryan Graudin
Published on: September 26, 2017
Pages: 464
Genres: young adult, time travel
Goodreads • Amazon Affiliate Link
My Rating: Thumbs Up


I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

About Ryan Graudin

Ryan Graudin was born in Charleston, South Carolina, with a severe case of wanderlust. When she’s not traveling, she’s busy writing and spending time with her husband and wolf dog. She is the author of Invictus, the Wolf By Wolf duology, The Walled City, and the All That Glows Series.

(from GoodReads)




4 responses to “Discover a New Book: Invictus by Ryan Graudin

  1. Wow! I’ve seen this book around but now I really want to pick it up! I like the sound of the premise and the world building but I think the biggest draw is the balance you mentioned. I think that’s hard to come by, especially in YA. I’m so happy you enjoyed this one, Terri. I look forward to reading it myself. 🙂