The Chronos Files
By Rysa Walker
Comment on the Review: This is a multi-part series, composed of 3 main books, 3 novellas, as well as a handful of short stories. The main books were readily available at my local library, but I did not see any bound versions of the novellas or short stories when I looked there and online. I did read all of the novellas and almost all of the short stories through Amazon Kindle Unlimted (a month-free trial version available for Prime members). This review is an overview and a review of the entire series.
The Chronos Files: Novels & Novellas
1 – Timebound
1.5 – Time’s Echo
2 – Time’s Edge
2.5 – Time’s Mirror
3 – Time’s Divide
3.5 – Simon Says: Tips for the Intrepid Time Traveler
The Chronos Files: Short Stories
2092: A CHRONOS Files Story*
Kate Down Under**
What if you had the ability to travel through time? What if you had to time travel, to save the future and most of the world’s population?
One day, Kate Keller-Pierce discovers that was her destiny. One day, Kate’s dying grandmother, Katherine Shaw, appears, bringing at an old medallion that would unravel Kate’s world. The medallion, emitting a bright blue light for Kate, is the key to traveling through time. The medallion is called a CHRONOS key and it only works for those with the CHRONOS gene, which can be passed to future generations. Kate inherited the gene, and thus, is able to do something her grandmother hadn’t been able to do for years – travel through time.
Kate’s grandmother enlists her to help travel through history to stop her grandfather, Saul Rand, from rewriting history and wiping out most of world’s population. During her quest, she must be careful of two things – not to change history herself and not to tip of the Cyrists, her grandfather’s followers in the new religion he created, to her task at hand. She has very few people she can rely on for help – only her grandmother, her grandmother’s friend, her boyfriend Trey, her friend (sometimes more) Kiernan Dunne, and on occasion, her parents. Kate relies on this small, trusted group to help work through the details of time travel, as a sounding board for her plan to save the future, and for physical help accomplishing her mission.
Review/Recommendation: I picked up this series after reading a review online, and I was immediately sucked in. I couldn’t put it down, reading through the novels, novellas, and most of the short stories in roughly 6 weeks – a reading binge I haven’t had the desire or time to indulge in for years.
I enjoyed the main story line quite a bit. It wasn’t predictable, had intricacies related to time travel that kept me thinking, and in general, was well-crafted. Kate’s struggle to deal with the new path in her life was well done. It wasn’t just about the idea of suddenly having this huge responsibility on her hands, but also seeing her struggle with sorting out her past, present, and future; her conflicting feelings between Trey and Kiernan; and her relationship with her parents and grandmother.
I was particularly impressed with the way Walker wove in the novellas (which I read in their appropriate spot in the story) and the short stories (which I read after completing the novels and novellas). While I chose to read the novellas in line with the novels, this certainly isn’t required. Both the novellas and the short stories filled in gaps in the novels, places that I certainly didn’t miss but enjoyed getting to read for further detail and perspective. For instance, several of the novellas and short stories were told from the point of view of secondary characters (most notably, Kiernan, but also Saul and his henchman Simon), giving the reader a glimpse into their lives apart from Kate.
If you enjoy young adult books and a little bit of fantasy and sci-fi, then I would definitely recommend this series to you. It is a well-crafted, well-written series that appeals to both young adults and adults alike.
Notes on The Chronos Files
* At the time this post was published, I had just started this short story, and it’s unclear exactly how it’s connected to the rest of the series.
** I was unable to figure out where to acquire this short story, at the time of writing this post. It was not available on Amazon, as far as I could tell. It does look like it’s possible to download a short story for free on Walker’s website, when subscribing to her newsletter. You can select one story, including this one.
The Chronos Files are available on Amazon (affiliate link).