I’ve read a lot of these dimension-hopping novels, so I sort of surprised myself when I picked up Elsewhere. The plot is familiar, and so are the characters; in many ways it’s a good book to pick up when you don’t want to work your brain too hard.
Jeffy lives a life of quiet contentment with his precocious eleven-year -old daughter, Amity. Their near-idyllic life is torn apart when a vagrant Jeffy’s befriended turns out to be a renowned quantum physicist, who gives Jeffy the Key To Everything: a device that transports “passengers” to alternate realities.
Okay, first off, it’s a good book: engaging, well-written, with a light lyrical style which may have put it in the YA category if not for the over-the-top brutality of the main antagonist.
The rest of the characters were believable and easy to distinguish from one another, but aside from that, I thought they were a little bit flat.
Again, the plot was serviceable, but now that I’ve read so many of these, Elsewhere didn’t really stand out against the others … except for the dialogue, which was outstanding: funny, and very engaging.
The ending turned up in a bit of rush, I thought, with lots of rapid switching between scenes in the same house before winding down to a slightly disappointing end.
Not my favourite book this year, for sure, but worth the time if you’re looking for a light sci-fi read.