Book Review: Yesterday is History by Kosoko Jackson

  Yesterday is History  by Kosoko Jackson Genre:  Queer YA, historical science fiction Synopsis:   Weeks ago, Andre Cobb received a mu...


Yesterday is History by Kosoko Jackson

Genre: Queer YA, historical science fiction

Weeks ago, Andre Cobb received a much-needed liver transplant. He's ready for his life to finally begin, until one night, when he passes out and wakes up somewhere totally 1969, where he connects with a magnetic boy named Michael.

And then, just as suddenly as he arrived, he slips back to present-day Boston, where the family of his donor is waiting to explain that his new liver came with a side effect—the ability to time travel. And they've tasked their youngest son, Blake, with teaching Andre how to use his unexpected new gift.

Andre splits his time bouncing between the past and future. Between Michael and Blake. Michael is everything Andre wishes he could be, and Blake, still reeling from the death of his brother, Andre's donor, keeps him at arm's length despite their obvious attraction to each other. Torn between two boys, one in the past and one in the present, Andre has to figure out where he belongs—and more importantly who he wants to be—before the consequences of jumping in time catch up to him and change his future for good.

Content/Trigger Warnings: Chronic illness, death of child

Overall rating:  ★★★☆☆

Ahhh, I wanted to love Yesterday Is History SO BADLY, and there were certainly pieces of it that I loved, but I mostly felt underwhelmed by the story and character development. There was so much more that I needed that the book just didn’t give. I loved the queerdom and the MC being a gay Black teen, but everyone else in the novel is very White and the story is very male-centric. The MC’s best friend is female, but she basically disappears after the first few chapters and is only ever briefly mentioned again. And yes, this is a book about time travel, but the time travel element is actually very small.

"The only way out is through. And the best way through something is the truth."

The book really feels like a first draft that was never reviewed and edited before being published. It’s just missing SO MUCH. But I know this book was initially going to be released earlier and was revised based on feedback provided by sensitivity readers. So I’m not sure what went wrong. 

 There is so much potential here that didn’t live up to the expectation, and I feel so let down and disappointed. I NEED MORE, but I know the story here is over, finite. Simultaneously, parts of the book will stay with me. I’ll just be left wondering about all that in-between.

*I received a copy of this book free in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are entirely my own.

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