Seventeen-year-old Riki is worried about school and the future, but mostly about his girlfriend, Gemma, who has suddenly stopped seeing or texting him. But on his way to see her, he’s hit by a bus and his life radically changes. Riki wakes up one hundred years earlier in Egypt, in 1915, and finds he’s living through his great-great-grandfather’s experiences in the Maori Contingent. At the same time that Riki tries to make sense of what’s happening and find a way home, we go back in time and read transcripts of interviews Riki’s great-great-grandfather gave in 1975 about his experiences in this war and its impact on their family. Gradually we realise the fates of Riki and his great-great-grandfather are intertwined.
I read this book as part of the Aussie and Kiwi YA Bloggers August buddy read, which I was hosting. You can read the blog post and check out the chat questions over on the blog. I’ll be honest as this is a hard book to write about as I am not a huge fan of historical fiction and especially WW1 or WW2 fiction. Which for all intents is what this book is.
I am though a huge fan of fantastical time travel, ala The Time Traveller’s Wife, or Outlander. Which was one of the reasons I was interested in this book. Ricki, after being hit by a bus, waking up in 1915 in his Great-Great-Grandfather’s place in the Maori Contingent of WW1.
The book shows the real brutalities book ended with the boredom of war. Ricki not only struggles to survive a war he hasn’t trained for but to fit into a century he doesn’t belong in. It becomes clear that his life is forever changed and that he might never return to 2015.
I really enjoyed some aspects of this book, especially about how the past effects the future. Overall though I wasn’t that into a large part of this book. This isn’t to say that it’s a bad book, it just is too much not my type of book. I do recommend it though!
I give Legacy 3 out of 5 stars.
*Note I have recently after much consideration decided that I can no longer in good faith link to Amazon or Book Depository. Please check out your local bookstore or shop locally.