Reviewed by Christian Sia for Readers' Favorite
Saved in Time: An Escape Story by Francis Mont is a science fiction story with strong political underpinnings, and one can even think of it as a creative form of rethinking contemporary history. Zack lives off his inheritance but then he discovers a machine, a powerful device called the “Time Scope” which allows anyone to view historical events as they happened in the past. Using the buttons and the dials, the device allows Zack to tune into historical events. Senator Hopkins, an honest politician who is absorbed with the idea of saving the nation from a presidential candidate with authoritarian tendencies, takes a fancy to the device. His plan is to use it to stop a power monger from becoming the next president of the United States. Zack, Hopkins, and Joe Petuccini, a bad thug turned good man, team up to save the country and, probably, the world. The stakes grow bigger as the plot moves forward.
The second part of the book follows a character from another planet on the quest to uncover his origins. Ivo is convinced that their planet has never been the birthplace of his species and every archeological research has failed to indicate otherwise. Then he discovers someone using the scope and contact with Zack begins an adventure that established a strong connection between the Earth and their planet. Can the people of the Earth accept the cure that Ivo proposes, a cure for the worst pain of humanity, the genetic brain disorder?
While some readers might not fully experience a strong emotional connection with Francis Mont’s characters, Saved in Time: An Escape Story presents a concept that is original and will captivate fans of time travel, even if there is no actual time travel in the story. I loved the idea of being able to dial into history and watch events as they happened. The characters are well-drawn and written with compelling backgrounds. The encounter between Zack and the old man from whom he buys the device, something that costs him only fifty bucks, is interesting. The conflict is well-written and the connection between Senator Hopkins and the infamous Mafia boss, Joe Petuccini, is intelligently introduced. Zack’s desire to prove the innocence of the senator regarding media accusations of a link between him and the crime boss pulls Zack into their worlds. The narrative is filled with interesting commentaries and I enjoyed the streams of consciousness, such as when the protagonist thinks about opening an agency to solve cold cases using the device. This is a story with strong plot points, a compelling political conflict, and characters that are intriguing.