My rating: 3 of 5 stars
I received a free copy of this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. Many thanks to the author Chess Desalls and the publisher, Czidor Lore, LLC.
Travel Glasses is the story of a girl named Calla who runs into a stranger near a lake – the strange man she bumps into is named Valcas and he wears a peculiar pair of glasses. Calla soon finds out that these glasses are means to time travel and although she is intrigued by the entire situation at first – Valcas transports her to another time – the whole idea does not sit right with her and after being imprisoned by her newfound charming friend, Calla decides to steal the travel glasses and escapes. In an attempt to escape Valcas, who starts a chase after finding out she’s escaped with his glasses, Calla travels to several different times, meets several versions of people and ultimately finds out more about her life than she expected to.
I’ll start off by saying this book was a great read – I enjoyed reading it, but it took me a while to really get into it. The first 30% (I read a Kindle version) of the story was mostly uneventful to me and everything progressed really slowly. The choices Calla made in the beginning of the story I thought were really strange, considering the fact that she had her trust in people completely shattered not four weeks prior to meeting Valcas (if I remember that correctly). I thought it was kind of weird that she felt absolutely no hesitance or fear towards Valcas and didn’t start to question her actions until later in.
The story of the travel glasses is very original and inventive, props to the author for coming up with this story and keeping it believable. I did struggle with some of the information bombs that were presented every once in a while, but I generally struggle with long explanations of how things work, regardless of the book, so that was no surprise to me. Meeting the different characters – Edgar, Enta and everyone else was all very interesting, but my main focus somehow was still with Valcas, probably because he played such a big role in the progression of the story.
“Past” Valcas I thought was a great addition to the story, although I would’ve loved a full-out evil Valcas who just simply has bad motives for the hell of it. Instead, we got a glimpse into how Valcas was before he started using the travel glasses frequently, before his eye colour changed – before he changed. I thought for sure his attitude was going to be explained by throwing it on the ‘tragic past’-storyline, but hey—that never happened! Instead we got backstory as to why he was so adamant on keeping an eye on her. Yay!
On to the writing style of the book: I didn’t struggle with the wording, everything was easy to follow along with – aside from the previously mentioned information bombs, explanations of technical things and the like. The dialogue was all written just fine for my taste, I didn’t pick up on any weird sentences or word usage. It was a short story, but I think in this case it was a good choice considering the topic required the reader to stay on top of what they were reading. Aside from that, I’m assuming there’s going to be a sequel to this, so this was a pretty good way to start the series.
I ended up rating Travel Glasses 3.5 stars out of 5 – I thought it was a fine story that started off slow and a little strange, but got very immersive about halfway through. Stars were deducted for the headache inducing technical parts, but this was all in all still a fine read and I will be moving on to read the sequel once it is published (I’ll also be praying there won’t be a love triangle).
Travel Glasses by Chess Desalls is a great book for fans of time travelling and impressive world building and after this, you’ll never find a cooler pair of glasses again.