Monday 12 February 2024

Book Review: The Ministry of Time by Kaliane Bradley (Sci-Fi Romance)

Title: The Ministry of Time
Author: Kaliane Bradley
Publisher: Hachette
Publication Date: 14 May 2024
Pages: 356
Format: eBook - PDF
Genre: Sci-Fi Romance
Source: ARC via NetGalley

In the near future, a civil servant is offered the salary of her dreams and is, shortly afterward, told what project she’ll be working on. A recently established government ministry is gathering “expats” from across history to establish whether time travel is feasible—for the body, but also for the fabric of space-time.

She is tasked with working as a “bridge”: living with, assisting, and monitoring the expat known as “1847” or Commander Graham Gore. As far as history is concerned, Commander Gore died on Sir John Franklin’s doomed 1845 expedition to the Arctic, so he’s a little disoriented to be living with an unmarried woman who regularly shows her calves, surrounded by outlandish concepts such as “washing machine,” “Spotify,” and “the collapse of the British Empire.” But he adjusts quickly; he is, after all, an explorer by trade. Soon, what the bridge initially thought would be, at best, a seriously uncomfortable housemate dynamic, evolves into something much more. Over the course of an unprecedented year, Gore and the bridge fall haphazardly, fervently in love, with consequences they never could have imagined.

Supported by a chaotic and charming cast of characters—including a 17th-century cinephile who can’t get enough of Tinder, a painfully shy World War I captain, and a former spy with an ever-changing series of cosmetic surgery alterations and a belligerent attitude to HR—the bridge will be forced to confront the past that shaped her choices, and the choices that will shape the future.

An exquisitely original and feverishly fun fusion of genres and ideas,
The Ministry of Time asks the universal What happens if you put a disaffected millennial and a Victorian polar explorer in a house together?


The Ministry of Time was a captivating tale from start to finish. From the first chapter I was caught up in the characters and action. With time travel stories there is often the urge to "assess" the science, pulling one out of the story, but that never happened to me here as the writing was so good I never paused to question anything. This is a book I would say is actually more character driven that plot driven. Even so, there were a few twists in the story along the way to keep you guessing and to hold one's interest. I thought the slow-burn start to the romance worked well and felt believable, and I found the ending satisfying. I would definitely read more from this author in the future and I am giving this book five stars.

I received this book as a free eBook ARC via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. 

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