Rating: 5/5 stars
On a rural Georgia farm in 1899, a lazy summer afternoon is interrupted by the arrival of a man claiming to be from the future. The stranger intended to provide the nation’s forefathers with a letter detailing future events that lead to the demise of America in the 21st Century, but ending up in the wrong place at the wrong time, he has no choice but to leave the letter with the farmer.
Although no one ever believed the farmer’s story about the visitor, he’s afforded one last opportunity to recount the event with Theodore Garfield, a reporter for a local newspaper. But like everyone else, Theodore rejects the farmer’s story and dismisses the letter’s ominous warnings, including the prediction that America’s gradual collapse will begin with the murder of a future American president named John F. Kennedy.
Years later, Theodore’s encounter with the farmer is all but forgotten until a young senator named Kennedy is elected president. With the old farmer and his letter now long gone, will Theodore Garfield be able to prevent one of the most tragic days in American history?
“You may want to get your notepad and pencil ready,” Leroy instructed. “I am about to tell you the story of a lifetime.”
Yesterday, I was e-approached by the wonderful author, J.L Pattison, of this short story. He is an independent author, who has spent the last 15 months working to publish his very first story, The Visitor. I am honoured to be approached by such a fantastic writer, and also very happy to know that he is a fellow blogger, also. I highly recommend you follow his blog here for more from him!
I have always been very interested in novels relating to time travel, especially those regarding historical aspects, too. However, I have never been very encouraged to pick up a novel of this genre, in fear it may not interest me as much as I’d hoped. Pattison’s ability to craft a story like this in just 7000 words is astounding, captivating, and essentially everything you could ever want in a full novel, just shorter. This was perfect for me, because it is a short story, and thus supplies the premise and content of a lengthy time-travel book, without being too long, or boring at any moment. I read this is half an hour – half an hour well spent – and was completely engrossed in the storyline, that when I saw “The End.” at the bottom of the page, my heart dropped, for I was truly sad the story had finished.
Generally, I love what Pattison has achieved through this short story; in just 30 pages, Pattison made me question society and it’s ultimate naivety, as well as exemplifying the ever-present predatory nature of humanity. In basing this story around past events, he uses dramatic irony to display how dewy-eyed many people have been in the past, and will continue to be in the future. All characters do not believe the worst could happen, which is so baffling to us as the reader, for it already has.
I could lie and say 7000 words wasn’t enough, yet, frankly, it was. This book is a short burst, a quick snippet into the lives of 3 people, almost like a behind-the-scenes video clip on past historical events. This book was the perfect length, for it succeeded in everything it set out to: it interested me, captivated me, and concluded on a cliff-hanger so as to ensure you leave with questions. Don’t get me wrong here – it’s good that I’ve left with questions. They are not questions about the book, or the character’s fates, but are instead inner questions about my personal morals, and outer questions about the overall morals of society. I have no questions for the fates of the characters, for I don’t care for them, nor do I think I should; this is less a short story crafted to invest you in the characters, and more a social calling for change, so as to prevent Pattison’s predictions coming true.
I really enjoyed this book, and highly suggest you pick it up, for it is available for only 99p! And if you’re a member of Kindle Unlimited, this book is available for free, just as it is if you’re a member of Amazon Prime’s Kindle Lending Library. Click here to check it out. It’s only 99p – what are you waiting for?! And you’ll be supporting an independent author – there’s no going wrong!
As always, you can also find this novel on Goodreads by clicking here.
I hope you enjoyed this review, and a big thank you again to J.L Pattison for introducing me to his work.