A Review of: One Day All This Will Be Yours, by Adrian Tchaikovsky

To start… I started reading this book, and a day or two of reading in – THEN discovered it’s a novella. Imagine my disappointment….. However, I’m here to tell you that I didn’t mind this one! Primarily, because the story felt complete, and full. There wasn’t anything left out. Which honestly, is never the case with a novella. They usually come off like an excerpt. Or half/part of a book. So, yay! Who knew? This doesn’t change my opinion on them being sucky though, because it’s still a scenario of just getting enmeshed with the story, and characters, and then it being gone, and over.

Friends, this is a lesson on ‘why humans should never ever invent a time machine.’ An incredibly detailed explanation on why humans can not be trusted with such a technology. Because we will frack it all the way up until it’s so broken it’s impossible to even remember what not broken was like.

In the story, we have one person. He’s the last man standing. So to speak. We never learn his name. But we do learn his story.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

*spoilers ahead*

So, Mr Time Travel, came from a ‘time’ when the time machine was invented… but no one used them. There was a pact, not unlike nuclear bomb; that you know we have them, and we’re gonna threaten you with them, but once I use it or you use it – everything is changed forever. So we use them more as posturing.

Until the day when we don’t. No one knows who did it first, and possibly they all came to a head at the same time. Because how could it possibly be bad? Countries at war, strive, destruction, etc., everywhere. So what if we just went the once, to correct the reason for this war? Shift an event so we’re friends, and boom, the war never happens, and everything is now great! … This seems legit semi reasonable.

Except maybe all the sides went at the same time, and altered a Thing.. and now there’s 4 different alternate realities with different directions. And then someone goes back again, to change it the way they wanted it, not to what is now… and exponentially everything you ever knew, across all the realities you now exist in, is run through a cheese grater. Then, thrown down the garburator. And so on.

Our author does a brilliant job describing in detail just how messy and terrible this is, and to what extent everything, all time, that you know, didn’t know, no longer know, might never exist in etc- is all royally fucked.

But it gets worse! Because once everyone has realized it’s beyond beyond helping / fixing / repairing / undoing….. they all invent time bombs! Which somehow cut off a time shard from all else, so it can not be messed with further. No longer part of a multiverse, it’s singular again. Or, maybe it just obliterates the shard.

So, Mr Time Travel, who’s first a ‘soldier’ of this time war… eventually tires of the insanity. And sees the only way through: to first hunt down and kill everyone in possession of a time machine – ending the current war. Then, take himself to the future most place. And wait. Anyone who may have invented a time machine, and comes to the future, ends up I his lair, and dies. Then he goes back to their time, and prevents the time machine from ever being in vented.

This part of the story is so entertaining, all the things he does to prevent time machines. Thus keeping time safe. There shall be no time machines.

But then, he gets some unexpected travelers. They’re from the future. Which is impossible. He’s about to kill them and carry on, when they let it out that HE is their founder. He is mystified, but agrees to go to this future with them, to find out. It’s a nightmarish ‘everything is happy!’ utopia, where it’s all shiny and clean and perfect and happy. About 1000 people… who originated from him. There’s a statue!

After being toured around and gawked at, fed a meal, etc, he cops a excuse and says he needs to go home, the farm is waiting. At home, he understands, to prevent this future, all he has to do is stay his course. Kill all the time travelers, and in this case – now never meet anyone start a family and live happily every after. Nope. No problem. He congratulates himself on doing nothing, to solve this problem.

He goes on a vacation. Visits all his favorite moments, shards, locations thru millennia & multiverses. Finally returning home, satisfied…. To discover someone has arrived. And did not set off his alarms. And they’re been in his house, and fed his pet dinosaur.

Obviously the intruder must be hunted down. And dealt with. Things don’t go as planned. As he tried to track this person, they’re outsmarting him at every turn. He finally catches a glimpse on one of his surveillance drones. It’s the woman – his future Mrs Time Travel, that he saw in the statue in the future.

Curious, but clearly he’s still going to exterminate her, and then remove their time machines from existence. But now…. She’s actively trying to kill him back. They stalk each other for a couple weeks.

He invites her to chat. Because he clearly needs answers! She joins his table in the clearing, but isn’t stupid enough to drink the poisoned wine. Turns out Zoe, has no interest in being a founder, popping out babies etc. So the only way forward, to be sure, is to kill him. She is the opposite of the shiny happy thing from the future utopia. Mr Time Travel is even more curious.

Soon after they call a truce. And then shortly after he invites her to live in the house. They have so much in common! But platonicly. He finds he really enjoys her company. He starts taking her to moments in time, and they try to out do each other changing things. It’s a true riot of entertainment. Soon, he can’t imagine life without her there too. They’re aligned, on the no baby making part too.

But just as things are settling int a fun happy place, the original future kids show up, and start harassing them about why they’re not getting busy keeping the future alive. Zoe tells them it’s not going to happen…. But Weldon and Smantha will not take no for an answer. They chase them thru time, showing up everywhere Mr Time and Zoe go – sapping all the fun out of everything.

Eventually Mr Time and Zoe go to retrieve the last ‘time bomb’ from a very small shard – planning to disarm it in the utopia future. They could have just lived their life till it blinked out, but no, now they’re going to get blown to oblivion for harassing the not-founders. But the bomb is gone. They quickly learn Weldon and Smantha grabbed it first. And then they use it to shard their future from the others, and now it no longer matters that the founders refuse to be the founders.

Except now the cycle starts again, because in the future shard, they have time machines.

Thoughts:

• Story pacing?
Non stop action. 9/10

• Story character arcs?
Yes we have a whole arc for Mr Time Machine. Nicely done. And also some for Zoe too. Even to some extent the kids Smantha and Weldon. 9/10

• Story arc?
Definite, though it’s lacking a linearness, by design, haha. 9/10

• Story writing quality?
Great – the author expertly sets a tone, and a mood, and then brilliantly describes something that is pure fiction in an entirely believable and real way. 10/10

• Story wokeness? ( tolerable / gag me)
There’s a few little moral lessons in the story, you know the way certain people I shards ruin their country, environment, planet, etc etc. But it’s not annoying, it’s just a shard reality. 8/10

• Grates against my annoyances?
It did not! 10/10

• Grates against my annoyances? (fictional words)
Nothing stood out. Yay! 10/10

• Story romance level?
Our main characters actively fight against a ‘fated’ romantic relationship. They are perfectly 100% happy platonicly enjoying each others company, forever. Though they first pretend to get down to try and get rid of the kids overlording, then they copulate [safely] to try and get rid of them… but only for the sake of getting rid of the future-kids from annoying them endlessly. I love that this story actively had people not wanting, and avoiding romantic attachments. 10/10

• Story readability?
It is fast paces and so much happens, and 98% of it is super fictional – so it can be a little tiring to keep up, but purely enjoyable none the less. 9/10

• Story Completeness (did it end on a cliff hanger, or a see my next book!)?
Yes – it had a full complete story, tied up with a nice completed bow at the end. 10/10

• Did the story cover familiar ground, or go new places?
Time machine is not new…. But I felt like no one has come even remotely close to exploring the wormhole of a disaster time travel ripple effects – like this story has – so definitely new territory. 9/10

• Was there anything I wanted to know that was left unanswered?
Over all no. This story covers all the bases, and even all the time grains of sand it spreads around as well. 10/10

• Things I really liked / or didn’t like?
Really didn’t like that our Mr Time Machine has no name. It was tolerable, to an extent when it was just him. Not so much after the first visit from Weldon and Smantha. But totally annoying after Zoe enters the picture. 4/10

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