Review Blog

May 30 2016

The next together by Lauren James

cover image

Walker Books, 2015. ISBN 9781406358056
(Age: 14+) Recommended. Kate Finchley and Matt Galloway have started to fall in love during the year 2039 whilst both attending University of Nottingham Campus, England. The peculiar thing isn't that they have both just met but the feeling that they have been through this all before. Rewind to 1854, where Katy (Kit) is living as a boy to be able to work as a kitchen boy in the house of a lord. Lord Sommerset wants her to assist journalist Matthew Galloway, reporting on the war front in the Crimea on the condition that she spy on the journalist and report secrets back home. Rewind again to 1754 and Katherine is tired of her Aunt introducing her to prospective marital matches, so whilst she excuses herself to spend time in the garden she is secretly hoping to spend time with the family's coachman Matthew Galloway. How can these two people be linked throughout time and share memories that aren't their own? As 2039 Kate and Matt search for clues on the murder of their Aunt and Uncle (Kate and Matt) they discover the secret on why their lives seem to be destined to be together again and again.
Whilst the concept of this book intrigued me at first I found it difficult to be able to follow the timeline of each of the Kate and Matthew characters through history. The characters are written with strong personalities and with added charm and plenty of humour. The chapters do jump from one period to the next and as the story evolved I found it easier to follow along. I appreciated that Lauren James has intertwined the genres together making it a great book for lovers of historical, science fiction and even romance novels to enjoy. I would recommend this book to young adults from the ages of 14 years and above. I look forward to finding out what happens with Kate and Matt in the sequel The last beginning.
Jody Holmes

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