Monday, May 27, 2013

Book Review: The Photo Traveler by Arthur Gonzalez

Seventeen-year-old Gavin Hillstone is resigned to being miserable for the rest of his life. Left alone in the world after his parents died in a fire when he was four, he was placed in foster care, which for him meant ending up in an abusive home with an alcoholic adoptive father.

Gavin’s only escape is in taking and creating images. His camera is his refuge from the unending torture and isolation of daily life in his “family.”

Until he learns by accident that he isn’t alone in the world after all. His father’s parents are still alive and living in Washington DC.

When he takes the plunge and travels 3,000 miles to find his grandparents, he learns that they—and he—are part of something much bigger, and more dangerous, than he could ever have imagined. Something that has always put his family at risk and that will now threaten his own life, while forever changing it. 

He learns that he is one of the last descendants of a small group of Photo Travelers—people who can travel through time and space through images. But his initial excitement turns to fear, when he soon discovers that he and his grandparents are being pursued by the fierce remnants of a radical European Photo Traveler cult, the Peace Hunters. What Gavin has, they want!

His adventure will take him to past eras, like The Great Depression and the Salem Witch Trials. Gavin will have to discover who he really is and must make choices that spell the difference between life and death for himself, for the relatives he now knows and loves, and for the girl he will come to love.

For Gavin Hillstone, life will never be the same.

You can purchase The Photo Traveler on 

WOW!!! Just WOW!! Photo traveling at its BEST! (How cool is that?) I never thought that I would LOVE this, it was FAR BETTER than I expected. It conveys a lot of emotions. I caught myself smiling, laughing, crying, getting pissed and feeling nervous at times. I was trying to figure out what will happen to the main character but boy, I failed! It was hard to guess because the story HAS A LOT OF TWIST AND TURNS. I love the MYSTERIOUSNESS and all that. I'm glad Mr. Gonzalez puts some historical details in it, I love the SALEM WITCH TRIAL. It was so VIVID. I was so engrossed while reading that part (that for one moment I wanted to go there and kick Gavin's ass! What the hell is he thinking?)

When I started reading this, for some reason, I couldn't put it down. I was deeply moved by the story. There is this one particular chapter that really HIT me. I CAN'T STOP MYSELF FROM CRYING! I swear, it broke my heart (and remembering it, makes me want to burst out again). I had made a STRONG connection in each character especially to Gavin. I could feel the weigh on his shoulders. I wanted to help him (if only I could).

I'M INLOVE WITH THIS BOOK AND I STRONGLY RECOMMEND THIS (even if I'm not a young adult. But who cares, anyway?) It keeps me wanting for more. (Imagine my reaction when I found out that the second book is still in progress) I can't wait for the second installment. I know it will answer all my questions.

This book deserves a 

THE PHOTO TRAVELER is young adult author Arthur J. Gonzalez's first novel. Arthur was born and raised in Miami surrounded by his loud Cuban family. He graduated from the University of Florida, where he acquired his coffee obsession and his chocolate hoarding antics. He's the proud father of one baby girl, Sookie—his miniature schnoodle dog. Arthur is a self-professed goofball who spends 98% of his life laughing. He's now working on his second novel.

You can stalk Arthur Gonzalez here:
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