Time Tunnel: The Empire
In the second book of the time Time Tunnel series by Richard Todd, The Empire, the world as we know it, has been completely changed. The catastrophic and horrendous events of September 11, 2001, never happened. Most of the hijackers were mysteriously killed, while those on Flight 11 were overtaken, the plane making an emergency landing. Kyle Mason is a national hero. He thwarted those attackers but, unfortunately, died in the fight. He will never be forgotten.
Two people have risen to prominence in the last seven years: Padma Mahajan—who was married to Mason—has now become one of the richest people on the planet, after making some incredibly insightful and (at the time) seemingly risky financial decisions in the stock market and real estate, she is now a trillionaire. Her partner, who is a complete recluse and has never really been seen by anyone, one Anderson Wild, is also a trillionaire. They control much of the country with their massive lobbying groups and have almost all of Congress in their pockets, except for one far-right Texan Senator, Jonah Jones, who refuses to be bought by them.
Meanwhile in Area 51, the covert government group known as Dreamland is about to begin using a time-traveling device known as the Time Tunnel. Before they can take the first step, Congress makes the unbelievable decision to privatize Dreamland and hand it over to Padma and Anderson. The trillionaires show up on Dreamland’s doorstep, and Anderson Wild is, in fact, none other than Kyle Mason, only not the Kyle Mason who was killed on Flight 11 from this timeline, but the Kyle Mason who traveled from the future to stop 9/11 from happening in The Twin Towers. They take over Dreamland, getting rid of the man in charge, General Craig, who is not happy. Their first order of business is to shut down the other Dreamland from Kyle Mason’s original timeline.
Senator Jones sees an opportunity and immediately begins working with General Craig, who has been put in charge of the US military, the most powerful force on earth. It doesn’t take long for the coup d’etat to begin, and, soon, the United States has become a very different world with Jones assuming the Presidency. Then they launch their attack on Dreamland and on Padma and Kyle. With just moments remaining, the couple use the Time Tunnel, only the location is unknown and, before they realize it, they find themselves back in 1890 with the Lakota tribe and a renowned man who is known as Sitting Bull. The Battle of the Little Bighorn is just days away.
For a sequel, The Empire does a good job of changing things up and not just being a copy of the previous novel. It’s fun to actually see a time traveler take advantage of their knowledge of the future and become the richest person on the planet from it. The events with Jonah Jones seem a little far fetched and happens a little too quickly, but the perhaps eerie similarities to our current political climate cannot be denied. As the reader is taken back to the nineteenth century and the Lakota tribe, Todd has clearly done a lot of research and does a great job of providing lots of details and immersing the reader in the historical period. This book also ends on a great cliffhanger, leaving the reader wanting much more.
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|Science Fiction & Fantasy