Review: September Sky by John Heldt

September Sky

By: John Heldt
Pages: 412
Series: American Journey #1
Published on: January 1, 2015
Review: September Sky by John Heldt

When unemployed San Francisco reporter Chuck Townsend and his college-dropout son, Justin, take a cruise to Mexico in 2016, each hopes to rebuild a relationship after years of estrangement. But they find more than common ground aboard the ship. They meet a mysterious lecturer who touts the possibilities of time travel. Within days, Chuck and Justin find themselves in 1900, riding a train to Texas, intent on preventing a distant uncle from being hanged for a crime he did not commit. Their quick trip to Galveston, however, becomes long and complicated when they wrangle with business rivals and fall for two beautiful librarians on the eve of a hurricane that will destroy the city. Filled with humor, history, romance, and heartbreak, SEPTEMBER SKY follows two directionless souls on the adventure of a lifetime as they try to make peace with the past, find new purpose, and grapple with the knowledge of things to come.

I received this book for free from Author Gifted in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Find the Author: Website, Goodreads

Andi's Review


I do love me some time travel, especially when it is heart felt and serious, versus Bill and Ted type of time travel. I know a lot of people like that, but I want real consequences for actions and such.  Which made this book all the better.


Father and son are both at a turning points in their lives.  Son decided that he did not want to go back to college.  Father was just laid off from his long term job as a journalist for a newspaper and so they both decided to sell everything and try something new.  Just as they were thinking about what to do a lady suggested they go to a symposium put on by a professor in time travel.


What  started out as a seemingly fun lecture about time travel soon turned into father and son sitting in the professors house, seriously contemplating their future and if going into the past would be worth it.  The father being a historian decided that yes it would and father and son took the dive.  Mind you, the professor had specific things that he wanted done to ensure their travel was the best possible.  Did the main characters listen?  No.


The author took a lot of time not only researching time travel but the past, especially the Galveston region.  One interesting point that this book made that I find really interesting is that you could only go back to certain and very specific times.  You would think that with the invention of the Delorean you could do whatever you wanted, but it was not that easy.    Using crystals as the conduct also proved very interesting.


I would have personally liked to read more about how the impact of what they did changed not only Galveston but the future, because we all know that it will get worse.  Overall this is a solid book and really interesting premise.  I was pleasantly surprised while reading it.

4 stars




About John Heldt

John A. Heldt is the author of the critically acclaimed Northwest Passage and American Journey series. The former reference librarian and award-winning sportswriter has loved getting subjects and verbs to agree since writing book reports on baseball heroes in grade school. A graduate of the University of Oregon and the University of Iowa, Heldt is an avid fisherman, sports fan, home brewer, and reader of thrillers and historical fiction. When not sending contemporary characters to the not-so-distant past, he weighs in on literature and life at

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