Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy, Historical Fiction
Series: The Girl from Everywhere #1
Published by Greenwillow Books on February 16th 2016
Source: Provided by Publisher, Edelweiss, Own, Purchased
Amazon, Barnes & Noble , The Book Depository
Nix has spent her entire life aboard her father’s ship, sailing across the centuries, across the world, across myth and imagination.
As long as her father has a map for it, he can sail to any time, any place, real or imagined: nineteenth-century China, the land from One Thousand and One Nights, a mythic version of Africa. Along the way they have found crewmates and friends, and even a disarming thief who could come to mean much more to Nix.
But the end to it all looms closer every day.
Her father is obsessed with obtaining the one map, 1868 Honolulu, that could take him back to his lost love, Nix’s mother. Even though getting it—and going there—could erase Nix’s very existence.
For the first time, Nix is entering unknown waters.
She could find herself, find her family, find her own fantastical ability, her own epic love.
Or she could disappear.
The Girl from Everywhere really deserves more hype.
I didn’t expect much from it when I picked it up, because most people weren’t really talking about it at the time. However, I was quickly engrossed into the storyline thanks to the brilliant time travel aspect and the spectacular writing.
Nix and her father’s crew travel through time and space using maps. If there’s a map, be it of a real of fictional place, they can travel to that particular place and time. The way Heidi wrote the traveling was so amazing! I felt like I was watching a movie; transfixed by the magical ship that traveled through time.
“I was a closed book, a rolled map, a dark territory uncharted; I was surprised by my urgency, but after all, to be known was to exist.”
Another thing I liked about the book was Nix, although I know from other reviews that some readers didn’t like her much. What I loved about her was the way she was so undeniably clever. She knew a lot about history of the different places they visited, because she would be the one to plot out the courses her father had to take to get what he wanted. You need tigers? Nix knows just the map. What about gold? Yep, she has a map for that, too. Nix was terribly undervalued, which made me like her all the more. Despite her strained relationship with her father, Nix still helped him and still wanted to see him happy. She was also so vulnerable, that it was hard for me not to love her. I wanted to help her, I wanted to comfort her because I felt like she deserved happiness.
This book has a love triangle, however it’s very light and I think everyone who reads it knows exactly which guy they’re rooting for View Spoiler »Of course, the charming thief Kashmir. Kashmir was Nix’s confidant, her right hand man; Kash could charm a snake out of their skin if he tried hard enough. So, yeah, Kashmir is the absolute best choice for Nix, and their chemistry is just so amazing that you can’t possibly understand how the other guy even fit in the picture. « Hide Spoiler I mean, the other love interest is cute and all, but he’s no love interest material for Nix. I understand why Nix was torn between the two of them: one was the dangerous, adventurous side of her, while the other is the safe side, the embodiment of a normal life that Nix so desperately wants. I found the love triangle to be extremely well developed and didn’t really grate on my nerves like others would.
The writing is incredible, so vivid that it easily transports you to Hawaii in the 1800s, with vibrant descriptions of nature and delicious food. The historical research was obviously very extensive, as we get a good feel as to how the political and socioeconomic nature of Hawaii was back then as well. There’s mentions of Hawaii is facing problems against colonization and globalization, and we see that struggle throughout the book.
While this book is marketed as time travel, I think it focuses more on a heist. The heist seemed all kinds of impossible at first, but Nix, Slate, and Kashmir have to carefully plot it out. I loved this aspect as there was a lot of deception and secrets thrown all around, which led to wonderful surprises and plot twists along the way.
This book also has diversity AND it’s #OwnVoices! Nix is biracial (half-Chinese), but the book never just focuses on that. Nix isn’t just the “half Chinese character”, but a brilliant girl who travels around the world. Kashmir is Persian, from a place that was set in a fairytale. Not to mention, there’s Rotgut, a used to be monk, and Bee an African woman whose wife’s spirit travels with her. I hope the next book focuses a bit more of Bee and Rotgut, because in the few pages they appeared in they totally stole the show for me.
Overall, this underrated book surprised me with its beautiful writing, captivating plot, and amazing characters. I think The Girl from Everywhere is a book you should totally add to your TBR because it’s incredible!
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