Million Eyes by C.R. Berry #BookReview #BlogTour


How do you fight an enemy who has a million eyes?
What if we’re living in an alternate timeline? What if the car crash that killed Princess Diana, the
disappearance of the Princes in the Tower, and the shooting of King William II weren’t supposed to
happen?
Ex-history teacher Gregory Ferro finds evidence that a cabal of time travellers is responsible for
several key events in our history. These events all seem to hinge on a dry textbook published in
1995, referenced in a history book written in 1977 and mentioned in a letter to Edward III in 1348.
Ferro teams up with down-on-her-luck graduate Jennifer Larson to get to the truth and discover the
relevance of a book that seems to defy the arrow of time. But the time travellers are watching
closely. Soon the duo are targeted by assassins willing to rewrite history to bury them.
Million Eyes is a fast-paced conspiracy thriller about power, corruption and destiny.

I'm thrilled to be sharing my publication day review of Million Eyes today. Many thanks to C.R. Berry, Elsewhen Press and Rachel Gilbey from Rachel's Random Resources for inviting me and for my advance digital copy of the novel.

Although Million Eyes is a conspiracy thriller which explores just how far technology is able to not just monitor but also change our lives, it opens in 1100 as William II and his servant discuss a mysterious book. It's unclear what is so important about the book but its title alone - 'The History of Computer-Aided Timetabling for Railway Systems' means it's immediately obvious that it shouldn't exist in the 12th century. I've seen the Rufus Stone in the New Forest where Richard was supposedly accidentally killed by an arrow fired by Sir Walter Tyrell but perhaps it wasn't quite as straightforward an event as the history books tell...
When Gregory Ferro is given evidence which suggests that there was much more to Richard's death than a simple accident, he realises he is on to something big. The former history teacher becomes obsessed with his investigation which leads him to believe that time travel is not only possible but also that history has been rewritten because of it. Meanwhile, Jennifer Larson is out of work again after losing her job at a call centre. She comes across Ferro's blog about his discoveries and leaves a comment which leads to the pair agreeing to meet up.
The pair are very different people and I particularly enjoyed seeing how Jennifer's understandable scepticism gradually diminishes as she realises that he is telling the truth. What follows is a fast-paced thriller which effectively switches between key moments in history  - including the plague, the Princes in the Tower and the death of Diana - and the increasingly dangerous situation Ferro and Jennifer find themselves in; I really appreciated how every time period and alternate scenario was so vividly evoked throughout. It's difficult to review this book without giving away spoilers but I can say that there are some completely unexpected moments which totally shocked me. As somebody who loves reading thrillers, sci-fi and historical fiction I was spoiled by Million Eyes and was completely gripped by the clever, twisty plot.
The characterisation is excellent throughout; Ferro is an ordinary man, a former history teacher who  eventually risks everything to get to the truth. It's actually quite heartbreaking to see him lose what he most loves as he reaches the point where what matters most to him is following his investigation wherever it may take him. Jennifer is a fabulous character and I absolutely loved how she starts the novel as a drifting graduate, unsure what she wants from life and unable to hold her tongue and yet it transpires that in the face of danger she is a courageous and resolute young woman who keeps going even as she is faced with the horrifying reality that she doesn't know who she can trust. As the novel progresses, it becomes apparent that there are really sinister forces at work here and everything we know may be a lie. It sounds terrifying  - and it is  - but Jennifer in particular has a really likeable dry wit which ensures that there are lighter moments too.
As a long-time Whovian, perhaps the biggest compliment I can pay to Million Eyes is that it reminded me of a Doctor Who plot (I loved the reference to the big ball of wibbly wobbly timey wimey stuff). C.R. Berry has taken a scenario which should be unbelievable but by including well-known events and our universal fears about invasive technology, it actually feels only too plausible. Tense, ominous and addictive,  I absolutely loved every word of this intelligent, complex thriller and can't wait to discover what happens next. Very highly recommended.

If you need any more persuasion to read this fabulous book, check out this brilliant trailer.


Million Eyes is published by Elsewhen Press, purchasing links can be found here.

Don't miss the rest of the blog tour, details are below.


About the Author




C.R. Berry caught the writing bug at the tender age of four and has never recovered. His earliest stories were filled with witches, monsters, evil headteachers, Disney characters and the occasional Dalek. He realised pretty quickly that his favourite characters were usually the villains. He wonders if that’s what led him to become a criminal lawyer. It’s certainly why he’s taken to writing conspiracy thrillers, where the baddies are numerous and everywhere.
After a few years getting a more rounded view of human nature’s darker side, he quit lawyering and turned to writing full-time. He now works as a freelance copywriter and novelist and blogs about conspiracy theories, time travel and otherworldly weirdness. He was shortlisted in the 2018 Grindstone Literary International Novel Competition and has been published in numerous magazines and anthologies, including Storgy, Dark Tales, Theme of Absence and Suspense Magazine. He was also shortlisted in the Aeon Award Contest, highly commended by Writers’ Forum, and won second prize in the inaugural To Hull and Back Humorous Short Story Competition. 
He grew up in Farnborough, Hampshire, a town he says has as much character as a broccoli. He’s since moved to the “much more interesting and charming” Haslemere in Surrey
Author's Website  Million Eyes  Gregory Ferro's blog  Twitter  Facebook

Comments

  1. Thank you so much Karen! One of my favourite reviews from the tour :). So pleased you enjoyed "Million Eyes".

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's such a pleasure, I'm glad you enjoyed my review! I'm looking forward to reading the next book :)

      Delete

Post a comment