Saturday, June 15, 2013

A VERY detailed Review of Rewrite Redemption by JH Walker

I want to start this off by saying that I have always read books that I've reviewed. If I don't read it, I don't review it. So I'm going to make this particular review EXTRA detailed to show the two weeks that I spent reading this very long book-- two weeks I could have been reading other books. You guys know that I don't usually post spoilers, but hey, if that's what I need to do to prove I read this book, so be it. Also, this will not be like my other reviews. I was told I didn't put enough accurate details into the plot, so that's what you're going to get in this review.

Rewrite Redemption alternates chapters between two main characters in a first person point of view: AJ, a girl who gets periodically yanked back into time/location without knowing when it's going to happen. This unsurprisingly causes her a lot of anxiety, so she makes rules for herself at school so that people don't notice her just in case this happens at school (kind of effectively making her INVISIBLE, but not as a GHOST). She thinks (and it sure seems so) that this is why her mom died because she's the only one who has seen AJ disappear and no one believed her, and that her dad drinks all the time because he also sees her disappear after his wife died. So lots of guilt there. But by the way, they have enough money for a large house sized treehouse to be put up in the backyard (but it doesn't have a bathroom by the way). When she's in the treehouse, it makes her feel a lot more steady because apparently her powers are connected to trees, which she'll learn later. If she spends too much time away from trees or nature, she starts feeling drained of energy.

She also has two best friends Lexi and Ipod. All of them have been damaged in some way by their parents. Lexi has an awful relationship with her mother who I think sleeps around (I'm too lazy to go back and specifically look at this relationship), and Ipod gets beaten by his father all the time. This is how Lexi and AJ originally found Ipod but now AJ also magically has the powers to heal, so he basically gets beaten by his father, goes to see Lexi to heal him, and he hides out in the treehouse.

AT THE SAME TIME, we also get a first person perspective of a guy, Constantine, who doesn't originally live in the same city. First of all, his voice sounds just like AJ's and so especially since the chapter headings don't have labels for each character, initially this is very confusing. Constantine also can travel through space and time, and has been trained for a long time on his powers. Because he was being a high school guy, he changes time so he can simultaneously date some girl, go to a concert, and take his chem test. By rewriting time, his brother ends up in a wheelchair, depressed, and always just plays video games. There is a huge guilt complex here, but Constantine is prevented by some nebulous board of people (again too lazy to go back and get specific labels for these people) to go back and change things to the way they were because of RULES and the DANGERS of time travel and CHANGING THINGS.

Going back to AJ, she gets yanked back into time early in her childhood, NOT IN CURRENT TIME BUT A FLASHBACK, where she meets an Indian boy named Hosa, which will become important later in the story.

Back to Constantine, his family moves to the same town as AJ, and he can sense her power/skills and spends many chapters trying to find her in the school. This is EXTRA important because he wants to USE her so that he can prevent his brother getting in the wheelchair in the first place and trying/and succeeding to commit suicide.

At the same time, AJ has a makeover and takes off her hoodie so that people can see her for the hottie that she is.

Back to Constantine, he finally contacts Lexi, who helps them meet for the first time. AJ can also feel his power, and in the middle of the school, they stare at each other for a long time just sensing each other's powers. Constantine actually falls into her memories as they occur.

OK I was going to detail the rest of the story, which contains AJ having her worst nightmare come true and getting almost yanked in time/space during school, but Constantine saves the day by "stabilizing" her, and then she goes back to the time of cowboy and Indian, where she meets Hosa again, and almost gets raped by a cowboy, and Constantine meets up with Lexi so that he can try to save AJ. At the same time, Ipod gets beaten up by his father after Lexi's mom accuses him of impregnating her daughter, and sent to the military. So when AJ and Constantine go through a bunch of stuff like almost getting killed, Constantine getting shot right as they are going back to their original time. But of course survives after AJ heals him in the treehouse. This part DRAGS for me and it was more difficult to get through this part. Yes, there's lots of action, but I found myself being BORED.

THEN they have to go back and save Ipod by rewriting time BEFORE saving Constantine's brother (if you don't get the title by now, shame on you, REWRITE REDEMPTION, right???). Constantine has some inane idea that AJ and Ipod are together. I hate when characters don't communicate with each other. So he's like, okay well, I won't know you guys anymore, but it's for the best. I'm sure I'm not getting the details EXACTLY right, but again, I refuse to go back to the book to specify these things further.

So more things happen, and they end up rewriting everything perfectly, and Constantine really spearheads this effort before things start, but AJ and Lexi time things (as the people who carry out this plan) so that she ends up meeting Constantine shortly thereafter with a convenient phone message from Constantine in the future before things have been rewritten.

The End. I'm not putting a rating on this for various reasons.

For those of you that think that I just spent all day yesterday actually reading the book just to write this review TODAY, that's not true and probably isn't physically possible because it literally took me two weeks to get through it.

Hope you all found this illuminating.


  1. Who would accuse you of not reading a book and then reviewing it? Why would anyone do that? The only reason I would see to review a book I didn't read is if it were SO bad after the first 10-15 pages that I had to put it down before I could finish it. It sounds like this book would probably qualify for me. You were nicer than me in giving such a book a chance. Thanks for saving me the time, and thanks for that review.

  2. I can't believe the author accused you of not reading it! :s I don't get that some authors have to attack bloggers/reviewers who take the time to read their books and putting an honest review of it. Shame on them! -.-

  3. The kid's name is Ipod?? is that supposed to be ironic?

    Thoughts on GR: It hasn't been that long since that one author's agent was caught tweeting derogatory things about a GR reviewer, or since that other author was caught it a comment battle when he was defending his agent-sister's book. I understand what it's like to be frustrated by a review, to want to scream "but, but, you totally didn't understand what I meant" or "how dare you presume to know more about the time period than the expert I hired to verify my facts?" But the thing is, wanting to do something and doing it are two different things, and just because we can all hide behind the internet doesn't give us free reign to behave badly. Reviews are just opinions. Opinions, by their very nature, are not right or wrong, they're just how people feel at one point in time. And it is not okay to accuse someone of lying or faking a review because you do not like their opinion. It is not okay to use threats or intimidation in an attempt to quiet them.

    I felt the need to repost this, as a reminder to all authors that GR belongs to reviewers, not us, and we are lucky they take their time to promote our books for free.

    --Paula, YA author, supporter of free speech

  4. Wow just because they didnt like your review doesnt mean that they can "attack" you. Not everyone's going to like the story. Your allowed YOUR opinoin. They need to grow up and learn that not everyone will always like what they do. I dont always like what I read and am honest about it. Others will probably love it. So you know what, good for you for being honest and dont ever let them make you feel bad about that!

  5. I can't believe someone would accuse you of not reading it! Seems to me that your review certainly shows you have taken the time to do so. If the author doesn't like your review then she should think twice about asking ANYONE to review her book, since a review is an opinion and they are not all necessarily good.

  6. First, I am impressed that you gave this book four stars. Seems like that was very generous. Second, you obviously read the book:) Way to persevere. And finally, I'd like to apologize for someone who won't - the author who went out of their way to attack you over your review.

    Book reviewers and readers are the life-line of the Indie Author. Let's not forget that people.

  7. Wow, Christina that’s quite a review! I get the impression from the first few lines, that someone accused you of not really reading the book before reviewing it. Unbelievable! Those of us who have followed you from the beginning know that is never the case. I always read your thoughtful reviews before purchasing a YA book because I know I’m getting the straight scoop. Keep up the great work and don’t let the malcontents get you down!

  8. I have always found your reviews very thorough, complete and really among the best reviews of books that I read on the blogs that I go to. Having read your reviews, I would suggest to the author that her or she develop a little thicker skin and also realize when you put a piece of creative work (painting, sculpture, book, video production etc etc) out that not everyone is going to like it or maybe even "get it." Its part of bargain you put yourself out there and you have to be prepared to take the good with the bad. And actually the bad can help you and your next work become better.

    I agree with Paula's comments above very strongly! Well said!

  9. What a shame that the author blasted you, Christina. I mean, what the hell!. It's unacceptable that the author thought you actually didn't read the book before reviewing!. Why would a blogger waste their time reviewing something that they didn't read?. Well, anyways, hope this detailed review proves the author wrong. I think I will skip on this book. The plot seems dull to me even though there seems to be a lot happening!

  10. What a shame that the author blasted you, Christina. I mean, what the hell!. It's unacceptable that the author thought you actually didn't read the book before reviewing!. Why would a blogger waste their time reviewing something that they didn't read?. Well, anyways, hope this detailed review proves the author wrong. I think I will skip on this book. The plot seems dull to me even though it seems to be happening!

  11. Are you kidding me? Your reviews are among the most detailed, honest, and fair that I've come across in my time in the book blogosphere. It's really a shame that authors can't accept a review for what it is. Bloggers' time is far to precious to waste time reviewing things of no interest, and things that they haven't read. For me, this book is a definite pass. The "illuminating" (haha) details make it seem like I wouldn't give it a good review.

    If you can't take critique, then why make art, in my humble opinion. Especially since you gave it a pretty generous rating. It's not like you gave it a one and trash talked it.

    If this doesn't prove your integrity as a blogger, I don't know what will. Good for you for sticking to your opinion!

  12. Your review is very honest and well written. And despite the troubles you've had with the book, the plot sounds very intriguing and I want to read it. I'm a big fan of sci-fi and time travel books, and this would definitely catch my eye in my book hunts.

  13. Thank you for sharing your honest review. I admit I'm reading it currently and while the concept is interesting the book is dragging on. I'm so disappointed that the author would accuse you of not reading the book. I know I wouldn't waste my time to create a fake review. I have better things to do like staring at the wall. =D