A little bit of time travel, a mind-bending sci-fi adventure, and a delightful cast of quirky characters make this a story that you will love reading with the young people in your life – or on your own, I’m not going to judge!

About the Book

He can’t lie, he can’t harm but he can save lives.

After their dramatic escape from the devastating fire at the Old Coach Inn, the Swidger railway tunnel takes William Arthur and Granny on to London for what appears to be a new adventure … or is it?

Dark forces that seek out William Arthur are at play, leading our young hero to doubt his future as a SWIDGER. But then he is given a mysterious red book by an old man with a white beard. William is told to protect it with his life – yet the pages are blank.

A sudden catastrophe changes everything and William and Granny must somehow find a way to put the world back to what it was. Could the blank pages of the mystery red book somehow be the key?

Only time will tell.

My Thoughts

I didn’t have the opportunity to read the first one before diving into this one. That was sort of okay, but I really wish I’d read the first one. If you’ve been around for a while – you know that I prefer reading books in order. Reading out of order is a pet peeve of mine. But, this one also seemed to me like it relied at least somewhat on prior knowledge. If not, I might have just been missing stuff – which isn’t uncommon for me and sci-fi or fantasy novels. Like playing board games, sci-fi and fantasy novels are something I really enjoy but sometimes go over my head. You don’t have to fully understand something to love it. To me, scifi and fantasy are excellent candidates for rereads because you will always pick up something new!

Anyone who has been here for a bit knows I’m a big cozy mystery fan, and one of the reasons is the standard cast of quirky characters. So to find that in another genre is a delightful gem! From the matriarchal leader Granny to the reluctant savior character William there is a character for everyone to love. I adored Rutley, the loyal, sweet boy with a train obsession.

I really enjoyed the twist that seemed like the start of a completely new story all of a sudden. I don’t want to spoil anything, but I thought the story over at Ch. 22 and was like – how are there so many chapters left? But I was so pleasantly surprised!

I am so grateful to the author and Love Books Tours for including me on this tour and will absolutely be going back to read the first book and looking forward to the next one!

Who’s It For?

If the young people in your life love sci-fi, time travel, and wacky adventure stories, this is the perfect book to grab up for them. But I’d get the first in the series first because I felt like I’d missed something important. It is billed for ages 10-plus. I’ll be honest, I’m not as familiar with the age group, but there was some cursing, some violence, and some adult situations that made me wonder if it was a little mature for that age group. Grown-ups will need to use their judgment.

Content Warning: Adult Situations (mild), Adult Language, Violence, Death, War, Noncon Drugging, Homelessness (Including Children Experiencing Homelessness)

Question of the Day

Did you enjoy sci-fi as a kid? What About Now?

About the Author

Steve Nallon has been a writer and performer in the world of comedy for over forty years. Steve began his performing life with his own comedy act on the Northern Working Men’s Club Circuit in Yorkshire back in the 1970s.

After gaining a degree in Drama and English at the University of Birmingham, Steve became a founding member of the cult satirical comedy series Spitting Image, where for over a decade he voiced many of the programme’s most iconic characters, including Margaret Thatcher, Roy Hattersley, Alan Bennett and The Queen Mum.

Steve’s acting work now ranges from theatre, film and television, to video games, puppetry and audiobooks. As a playwright and comedy writer, Steve has a considerable body of credits to his name, including plays and series for BBC radio, three one-man theatre shows and the satirical book I, Margaret, which he co-wrote with the novelist Tom Holt. Over the years, Steve has contributed to numerous periodicals such as The New Statesman and Musical Stages, and is a much sought after speaker on the lecture circuit for his insightful and amusing talks.