This is a time travel story. Time travel stories are very delicate. They’ve been done and done again so they get super scrutinized and need to offer something new.
Dan Alatoree’s The Navigators is well paced with characters that are developed enough to fit, but the main character didn’t grip me as much as I had hoped. The story starts out as a 1st person tale, but his voice is so quiet and lacking in thought that it read more like 3rd person. Then there were perspective changes that switched to 3rd person which really threw me, but with a time travel story it kind of worked.
It seemed like the story would have done much better as 3rd person. And that is crazy coming from me. 1st person is my favorite. Doing perspective changes in 3rd person format when the book starts in 1st person just makes it difficult to follow.
The plot had a good structure. Some college kids are working on a Florida archaeological dig and find a time machine. But that in itself seemed to be missing something. I don’t know how many archaeologists are still sifting through mines in Florida, and the way it was written, it sounded like this mine had been dug and dug again, so why would they set up there again?
The paradox of time is addressed as usual, along with the question of what is moral and what’s not. The author is clearly Christian and seemed to write his beliefs into all of his characters regardless of their spiritual background which seemed quite inconsistent. The main character is Indian and Hindu, but his beliefs are kind of set aside. When he and his friends are deciding about where they might like to travel back in time, they’re referencing Jesus. This is where time travel gets tricky, the cultural differences and historical facts versus what probably actually happened in times passed are the more realistic anthropological issues that I had hoped would be addressed in better detail.
The book is a fun story to pass the time, but is doesn’t really have anything new to offer to the world of time travel. I gave it 3 stars.