Review of Sea Spray (Time Box #3) by John A. Heldt

Sea Spray by John A. Heldt

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Sea Spray is the third is the Time Box Series by John A. Heldt. The story continues the journey of time-traveling family, the Lanes, as they arrive in New York City in 1927. Caught up in the glitz and glamor of of the Roaring Twenties, the family meets famous people, such as Lou Gehrig and Babe Ruth, and makes friends with their neighbors, the Prices. Amidst romance, speakeasies, and jazz, the Lanes are still very much on the run from the conniving owner of Janus Enterprises, Robert Devereaux. Robert and his assassin, Silas Bain, are never far behind in pursuing the fugitive Lanes from 2021.

As always, the author’s characters are well-rounded. Each member of the Lane family (Mark, Mary, Jordan, Laura, Jeremy, and Ashley) get chapters from their point of view, which helps bring them to life and embed the reader in each of their own spheres. Fun dialogue and humorous banter keep the narrative moving forward. Heldt has a unique storytelling style that relies on telling sentences, but his dialogue is strong and keeps the story interesting and moving in the right direction. His writing structure works well for his novels.

In addition, Heldt’s strong research of the time period stands out. His novels are rife with period details, historical figures and places, and true events. The reader gets to experience a Yankee game in 1927 and also be present for Lindberg’s famous trans-Atlantic flight. The author adds personal effects, such as the youngest Lane, Ashley, receiving a kitten (named Lindy after Lindberg) from Lindberg and the younger son, Jeremy, getting Gehrig and Ruth’s autographs.

The story ramps up quickly in the last quarter as the villains locate the Lanes’ in space and time. From there, the climax brings much into question for the Lanes’ future. Dreams are crushed. Hearts are broken. Friendships must come to an abrupt end. The Lanes say goodbye, and the stakes are raised as they head into 1941, where Robert wants to stop one of the most historical events in order to save his grandfather (who invented time travel 80 years before Mark Lane).

The ending of Sea Spray leaves the reader thirsting for the next book in the series. John A. Heldt has delivered a punch to the gut and the heart with his third novel in the Time Box Series, perhaps the best book so far in the series. Lovers of time travel and family-oriented stories will enjoy Sea Spray immensely.

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