Peter Clines’s PARADOX BOUND is a time-traveling romp through American history. Eli Teague grows up in Sanders, Maine, a small town where nothing much seems to happen and for Eli, a dead end. Then Harriet (“Harry”) Pritchard drives into town decked out in a Revolutionary War outfit, packing pistols, and driving a steampunked Model A Ford. Along with other searchers, including some iconic figures from American history, she’s searching for the American Dream in the literal sense, which was lost in the early 1960s. Trying to stop her are the sinister Faceless Men assigned to guard the Dream. Eli teams up with her to try to solve the mystery: Where has the American Dream gone?
Full disclosure, Peter is a friend and colleague, and I’m a big fan of his writing. In PARADOX BOUND, he delivers plenty of red meat of fans of his novels 14 and THE FOLD. We have an intriguing supernatural mystery, very likeable protagonists, and Peter’s trademark easygoing, very accessible style. While 14 had a strong LOST vibe, PARADOX BOUND has a definite DR. WHO feel to it. Harry is definitely a character male readers will fall in love with, mixing extremely capable with just a little vulnerable. The story offers time travel, tidbits of American history, and an intriguing take on the American Dream, all of it wrapping up with a very satisfying ending. To put it simply, it’s engaging and plenty of fun.