Mind The Gap

Mind the Gap - Tim Richards
(I got a copy through NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review.)

2.5 stars. It wasn't bad, but it didn't enthrall me as much as the blurb led me to expect. It contained its lot of good ideas (I've always had a fond spot for teleportation as a power, as well as for the Tube and underground trains, for some reason), while others felt muddled and confusing.

There's a prophecy, and several parties competing around it to seize the "Chosen One" in the middle of all this; but after a while I started to realise I didn't really know much about their motives, except for the most obvious ones, and it made for a plot that was at once complex yet underdeveloped. (One of the parties wanted to conquer, the other was striving for a certain being to come back to earth, the third and fourth one... I'm not exactly sure, in fact.) A few things were strange, too, such as the "bad guys" calling Darius "the boy"—he's a grown man, not a teenager, so "the young man", at the least, would have felt more justified. "Boy" just didn't cut it for me.

The characters in general would have deserved to be fleshed out more. And though the relationship between Darius and Viv was somewhat amusing (in a good way), thanks to their interactions, it developed a bit too fast to justify the whole "will go to every length to find you again". One event particularly put one character in extreme danger, as said character dove into a totally unknown situation with only a very basic plan, a.k.a "I'll let them capture me and we'll be together again".

I liked seing Egyptian mythology included, and alternate worlds. However the world-building never went far enough for me, remaining on a stereotypical level, whether it was Mas-Ra, the lands controlled by the Horus Alliance, the place where the third party came from, or even our own Earth, as the characters move so fast from one location to the other. In a way, the story was long without being long enough. Very, very strange.

The ending happened too fast, with a lot of people/beings appearing, then vanishing, all piling on the rest. The epilogue also felt out of place somehow. It's clearly here to introduce a second book, when this one seemed to be self-sufficient plot-wise.