Monday, 9 September 2013

15 Minutes by Jill Cooper (Review, Excerpt + Giveaway)

About The Author
Jill loves to blend horror, comedy, the supernatural, and love, through her novels. A fan of genre blending, her work strives to cross boundaries, but most of all strives to entertain. She loves soft cuddly cats, warm blankets, and paranormal romances. Jill resides in Massachusetts, is constantly renovating her home that she shares with her husband, young daughter, and two skittish cats.

Title: 15 Minutes
Author: Jill Cooper
Publisher: Self
Released: June 15th 2013
Pages: 236 (eBook)

I have 15 minutes to save my mother’s life….

15 minutes is all the Rewind Agency gives you in the past, but for Lara Crane it’s enough time to race through the city, find her mother, and stop her from being killed in a mugging that happened over ten years ago.

But that’s not how it happened. The story she’s been told all her life is a lie and when Lara takes a bullet meant for her mother, her future changes forever.

The love of her life acts like a stranger. Her simple life is replaced with a giant house, glamorous clothes and a new boyfriend. 

Except someone knows her secret. And he will try to stop her at every turn as she races against the clock to unravel a dangerous conspiracy.

Science fiction stories featuring time travel can either go really, really well, or really, really badly. With an electrifying plot, an amazing concept and likeable characters, 15 Minutes is one of the best I've read yet.
A method of travelling into the past has been created, meaning that people can revisit fond memories. However, they only have fifteen minutes in that memory before they are jolted back to the present. This means that Lara Crane only has fifteen minutes to save her mum from being mugged and shot. However, what she doesn't anticipate is how much one seemingly small thing can change her future so drastically. Now Lara has her mum back - but with her dad wrongly imprisoned, a new family, a new boyfriend and a haemorrhaging brain, Lara needs to figure out how she can turn things around before it's too late.

 To begin with, I was a bit cautious with 15 Minutes. The reader is instantly thrust into the story, no real explanation given as to Cooper's rules of time travel, as it differs from author to author. However, as I got further into it and explanations began to come forward, I found myself really enjoying it. No action is without consequence, and I loved the journey towards finding out what impact one small change did to the entire world. 

I have to say though, the best bit is the ending - or the last few chapters, anyway! The story goes from a steady pace to suddenly action-packed, with everything happening all at once! It's kind of difficult to get your head around some of the finer details, but you get the gist of it; and boy, is it amazing! Cooper has thought of everything, and the plot is so intricate and well thought-out that time travel seems almost believable. Heck, maybe it will be in the future?

Lara was both likeable and annoying at the same time. She was easy to relate to, but that didn't mean the reader was immune from finding her decision-making skills lacking - because she made some really stupid decisions, and her priorities sometimes seemed to be in the completely wrong place. Not to post spoilers, but she was in the middle of a family crisis - yet her biggest concern was the fact that she had feelings for a guy other than her boyfriend. YA or not, I think the book could have still been breathtaking without the added teenage angst.

On top of that, I didn't really connect with either of the boys in the love triangle. The novel had a lot going on, so the boy drama didn't really register - the reader is just told the facts about these two boys, but you don't have a chance to get to know them or fall for them yourself. In my eyes, they were just minor secondary characters.

Overall, despite what I felt was an unneeded love triangle, 15 Minutes is amazing. It's new, it's fresh, and it is so addictive that you won't be able to put it down! Now all I've got to do is wait for the sequel to be released, because after that cliffhanger, no way am I going anywhere!
Rating: 4/5

Behind me I hear a woman’s voice.
“Are you okay?”
Her voice rings a bell only in my deepest dreams. My movements slow as I turn and stare into my mother’s face. Her eyes are blue like mine, and her face is framed with curls. The stillness of the sight shocks me. I knew I would see her if I was successful, but I wasn’t ready for how my heart would ache or how badly I’d want to hug her.
She has a book in one hand and a cell phone in another. The phone is blinking, suggesting she’s been on a call and maybe whoever is on the other end might still be listening. But Mom doesn’t seem to care; her eyes are fixed on me.
“I’m fine.” Despite my dry mouth, my voice sounds normal, but I am anything but. “Only a headache.”
Mom smiles, and her warmth spreads to me. “Well it’s no wonder, being back here. Come out on the street where the air is fresh. We’ll get you a bottle of water.”
I follow her on autopilot and watch her retrieve a bottle of water from her brown leather messenger bag. Around us, pedestrians walk by. Any one of them could be her killer, but maybe by being here I’ve saved her. Maybe I stopped her from going too far into the alley.
I sip the water offered to me, and as she takes it back, Mom asks, “What did you say your name was?”
“Lara,” I answer before I can stop. I squeeze my eyes shut. My heart skips a beat with regret.
“That’s funny,” she laughs. “That’s my daughter’s name.” Her eyes aren’t suspicious. Her face is only kind.
My wrist watch beeps. I’m down to two minutes.
Mom turns towards the music store, and I follow. I see a man in the alley out of the corner of my eye.
Mouth agape, her head whips toward me. “What did you call me?”
There’s no time to answer.
A gun goes off.
I throttle her back, and she crumbles to the pavement. I take her place and feel a pinch in my side. My hand covers it instantly, and my legs wobble like jelly. I crash to the pavement, and my knees crunch under the impact. I grimace with my hand over the wound.
For a moment, my eyes lock with the shooter. He has dark hair and brown eyes. His brow furrows, and his lip snarls. Whoever he is, in that brief moment I tremble in fear. Then he takes off running. Around me people scream and run for cover. The ones that don’t are by my side. Someone calls for help.
My breath echoes in my ear. Mom is there, taking me by the shoulder. Her lips are moving, but I hear nothing. There are tears in her eyes and mine, too. I fall forward, my head cushioned by her lap. Unable to blink, I can only stare ahead at a red fire hydrant on the sidewalk. Everything grows dim, and my breath rumbles.
I swear I see a shadow leaping over my body, but when I turn my head, no one is there. I don’t understand. There was no mugging, so why was I shot? Mom was supposed to be mugged.
Time’s up. Everything goes dark as when a curtain closes on a stage, but I don’t think it’s from time travel.
I think I’m dead.


a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Thank you for this giveaway! This book looks like something I'd enjoy reading :)

  2. Thanks for reading :) I'm glad you liked it! Sorry you didn't connect with the love interests.

    Jill Cooper

  3. Nice review & excerpt. Thanks for participating :)