SFF

So You Had To Build a Time Machine

CamCat. Jul. 2020. 352p. ISBN 9780744300147. $26.99; pap. ISBN 9780744300161. $16.99. SF
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Skid is a no-nonsense sort of woman—she doesn’t believe in time travel, weird alien monsters, or things that go bump in the night. However, as much as she doesn’t believe in them, they apparently believe in her. As the world around her gradually changes, street names are altered, time begins to slip, and multiple incarnations of people around her began to appear. Everything points to Lemaitre Labs, near her little town, appropriately named Peculiar, where a supercollider has been installed. It seems that a—one hesitates to use the phrase—“mad scientist” by the name of Karl Miller has run an unauthorized experiment that had the unfortunate side effect of ripping open dimensions that begin slamming together, releasing dinosaurs, ogres, and a long-defunct circus. The only way to return to normal and stop the multiple universes from crashing into one another is to cut the power to the computer and halt the Miller Waves. Unlikely heroes, unwitting villains, and cutting-edge scientific speculation abound.
VERDICT Offutt (Chasing American Monsters) has created an engaging, quirky, somewhat scientifically believable scenario that both intrigues and infuriates readers, as they attempt to keep up with the constantly shifting plot.

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