Nerdspan review of MISSING TIME! 7/17/13

Check out this book review of MISSING TIME by columnist Phil Redbeard on!

Bookworms: Missing Time (313: Volume 1) (2013) by J. David Clarke

Posted By  on July 17, 2013

“Bobby is gifted! You should see what he can do.” – Rogue

Missing Time

Missing Time

On a normal day a group of normal kids board a normal school bus. Hours later the bus appears on a bridge, careening out of control before crashing through the barrier and into the water. Some of the kids emerge dead. Some of the kids emerge…different. All of them want to know: what happened in the missing time between school and the bridge?

Missing Time by J. David Clarke is a fast moving, fascinating, and fastidious super hero novel. Inspired by comic books, and the worlds of superheroes, Missing Time takes the concept of ordinary people being changed into extraordinary individuals one step further. How would the government react? How would the individuals react? One moment you are on a bus headed home, the next you have the ability to do things you don’t understand, and worse, you don’t know how any of it is possible. Would you revel in your power? Hide from it? Use it liberally? Fear it? Would you lose your friends, your family, your life? And what would you do when you discovered you were being hunted for no other reason that you were special through no action of your own?

Clarke takes eight teenagers, a bus driver, and a guy named Max, and weaves a tale of terror, thrills, and intrigue around a mysterious accident. Missing Time is a book you want to read carefully. The perspective, and temporal location, is constantly shifting. The advantage is that as you read, you encounter the story from all viewpoints. The disadvantage is the disorientation this causes. Are you in the past, the present, the future? Who are you right now? Clarke maddeningly paints the entire picture by leaving out all the details. At the same time, he focuses entirely on one section of the painting while refusing to tell you why it matters. Blink or let your attention wander and you’ll miss something. I had to re-read the beginning of the book because I thought it was more simple than it first appeared. Suddenly I realized that amongst constant pop culture references, quippy dialogue, and vivid descriptions, J. David Clarke was weaving a complex story around a few engaging characters and that nothing was quite what it seemed.

Disconnected from any established super hero universe, yet clearly borrowing from their rich history, Missing Time is the first part in a three part series that promises to present super heroes in a way fans haven’t quite seen them before. After reading the first volume, I can’t wait for the second…or the third. One thing is clear, I have no idea where this story is heading, but I am pretty sure that if I did, it wouldn’t actually be there. I think J. David Clarke is headed for a destination that will surprise and delight even the most jaded of super hero fans.

Here is a link to the full review on the site:


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