New York City: The Year is 1889.
New York City: The year is 2089.
In 1889 a group of bold pseudo-scientists discover the "temporal current" and begin to view the distant futures that await the Empire City. In the future, all life as we know it has crumbled, leaving New York City a ghost town with a populous scrabbling to survive underground.
In the past it's up to an unlikely group of Victorian heroines and heroes to preserve something of their world to save their future generations. In the future it's up to an unlikely group of survivors to take a leap of faith; discovering what their ancestors left for them with no more guarantees than love and hope.
A new Leanna Renee Hieber book is a delicacy to be sipped. It took me so long to finish this relatively short novella. You have no idea. The time I spent reading this is in direct proportion to how much I loved it. I would read a couple of pages, usually only one of the rather short alternating points-of-view. Then I would put the book down (figuratively, as this is a digital release). Then I would chew over the scene thoughtfully, ruminating, absorbing the beautiful (as always) word choice. I would go off and read something else for a day or two, until the brass gears in my head had revolved sufficiently toward the soft ping that pulled me back into this world. Or worlds, I suppose. Even though both timelines in this novella are really one, even though this world is our world — our past and our future — they are so starkly different from each other that they may as well be completely different worlds.
And yet. (And yet.) One thread remains the same throughout. It is a bright, shining cord of striking strength and femininity. Two very different and far separate generations of daring, willful women (and yes, a few men, too) determined to save the world. Maybe not their own world, not exactly, but some semblance of a world. I finished this novella at exactly the correct time, because I needed this. I needed to grasp that silver thread and hold it fiercely in my hand, to cup it gently in my palm and whisper, “See? This is our future. Our present. Our past. These are the kinds of heroines who really lived, who are living, who will rise in days to come. These are the women we need so desperately. These are the women WE ARE.”
Imagine a world where not only *can* women save the world, but that they MUST. Buy this. Get it. Read it. Absorb it. And then go out and create that world. That is what Leanna is giving us here: a gentle pride of the past, a small hope for the future. It’s a precious gift. Don’t waste it.