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A Lost Time Traveler and a Comanche Warrior - an Editorial Review of "The Mender"

Book Blurb:

A lost time traveler, a Comanche warrior, and their love across clashing worlds.

As the multiverse threatens to spiral out of control, only a Mender can hold the chaos at bay… at least, that’s what Eva’s been taught to believe. She's dedicated her life to merging the world’s reality, one shattered universe at a time — but she can’t do that while stranded in 1835 Texas.

Injured and separated from her mission partner, Eva must find a way home. And there's another problem: the handsome young farmer, Jim, who rescued her. If she's not careful, he may have her questioning everything she's ever believed.

Jim, a former Comanche captive, has been forced to return to Anglo society as an adult. A man of his word, he aims to keep a promise to an old friend even while he struggles to find acceptance within Austin’s colony of San Felipe. But first, he must come to terms with his violent past and the things he did to survive.

The Mender invites readers on an epic journey through the rough and tumble world of pre-revolutionary Texas, where nothing is simply black and white.

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ "It drew me in so fast. This was honestly a breath of fresh air. The whole book gave me so many brain tingles."

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ "Lots of twists and turns, add some romance, and WOW."

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ "It's a remarkable, absorbing, poignant, and evocative read."

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ "This is an interesting read with cross-genre appeal. There's history, time travel, romance, and even a good dose of Wild West drama."

[Hey there! Jennifer here. I'm going to break with the usual convention and write to you, my potential reader, directly.

You're probably wondering, what the heck genre is this book? Is it a Romance? A Western? Sci-Fi?

Well, if I had to put a percentage on it, I'd say it's 80% Historical Fiction with a time travel/alternate timeline twist. It's not so much about the time travel itself (though that's pretty cool), but rather an opportunity to explore metaphysical questions and different cultural perspectives by juxtaposing characters from vastly different worlds.

I take historical accuracy seriously, especially regarding depictions of Comanche characters and Anglo captives. I consulted with the Comanche Museum's Cultural Specialist in Lawton, OK, and a Comanche tribal member read my manuscript twice.

And yes, while there is action, adventure, and a slow-burn-to-steamy romantic subplot, if you're looking for a light, formulaic read where the hero and heroine are flawed in cute ways that aren't really flaws, this isn't it.

But if you're looking for something a little different, something that'll make you think, maybe question your own assumptions, and will have you on the edge of your seat by the end, then this is the book for you.

Please Note: The Mender is Book One of a traditional trilogy with a "to be continued" ending.]

Book Buy Link:

Author Bio:

Jennifer Marchman lives in Austin, Texas, with her husband, three nearly-grown children, and the two best dogs in the world. At different times, she has worn various authorial hats, including ghostwriter-memoirist, editor, curriculum writer, educational blogger, grant writer, and addicted social media over-sharer, but now, after many years, she’s writing for pleasure.

Jennifer is a member of the Writers’ League of Texas, the Historical Novel Society, #TimeTravelAuthors in the Twitterverse, and helps organize Austin Indie Authors.

She enjoys flamenco dancing, is the proud owner of a white belt in jiu-jitsu, and wishes to compete internationally in mounted archery but lacks a ticket to Kazakhstan. She has toyed with the idea of picking up pottery again, but needs more hours in her day and a husband willing to install (for the fourth time) the necessary electrical outlet for a kiln that may likely go unused.

Join her mailing list at for updates!

Edtiorial Review:

Jennifer Marchman's "The Mender" is a unique story that explores changing cultural landscapes through the context of time travel and alternate realities. This is a story that falls into many categories - historical fiction, speculative science fantasy, philosophical exploration, with a strong focus on characters and interpersonal dynamics. The novel adeptly and effectively navigates between Eva and Jim’s perspectives, two characters from vastly different worlds, bringing them together in a compelling story that transcends temporal boundaries.


Fully between dimensions, she sought the beacon set by her people’s scouts on previous missions to guide them. The worlds floated around her, a near-infinite shimmering sea. Without difficulty, she located the signal, but as she drew closer, the target split into two diverging lights. Her thoughts flew to Tophe. Uncertain where he would go, she knew she must choose before her strength wore out.”


The story begins with Eva's accidental quantum leap to 1835 Texas, introducing readers to Sanctum, Axis Mundi, and the True Line. Marchman excels in building a foundation of quantum concepts without overwhelming the reader, allowing the plot to unfold seamlessly. Eva's struggle with displacement, her encounter with Jim, and the subsequent exploration of cultural clashes provide an engaging entry into the novel.


The meticulous – yet never overwhelming – attention to historical detail is one of the novel’s greatest fortes. The chapters from Jim's perspective immerse readers in the rich tapestry of Comanche life, incorporating familial life, tribal dynamics, and the impending raid to Mexico. Marchman skillfully integrates historical events, such as the tensions between Anglo settlers and Mexico, adding a sense of authenticity and immersion to the story.


The evolving relationship between Eva and Jim forms the heart of the story. Marchman masterfully captures the nuances of their connection, from the initial disorientation to the gradual understanding and friendship – that later evolves into more – that develops. Eva's constant internal conflict, grappling with the implications of her prolonged stay in the wrong timeline, adds a layer of conflict and urgency to the story that is easy to relate to.


Marchman demonstrates a keen understanding of character development, allowing readers to engage with a diverse range of personalities, motivations, and conflicts.


Eva emerges as a complex and relatable protagonist that is easy to root for. As a Lux Libera operative with quantum abilities, Eva grapples with the responsibilities of her mission and the unintended consequences of time travel. Marchman beautifully portrays Eva's sense of unease with her situation and her conflicted feelings with her role, capturing the emotional nuances of her disorientation, guilt, and evolving understanding of the true line. The depth of Eva's character is further revealed through her interactions with Jim, her struggles with societal norms, and her contemplation of existential questions.


Meanwhile, Jim, a Comanche farmer with a tumultuous past, is a standout leading man despite his flaws as a person. Marchman delves into Jim's cultural identity, the trauma of his capture and torture, and his struggle to reconcile his dual existence. Jim's interactions with Eva provide insight into his protective nature, the complexities of his relationships, and his internal conflicts. Marchman writes Jim's character with empathy, portraying him as a multidimensional individual shaped by historical circumstances.


Supporting characters, such as Pump were unexpectedly effective. Pump's role as a friend to Jim and a fellow traveler adds layers of depth to the story, exploring themes of loyalty, guilt, and the consequences of choices. The ensemble of characters also includes figures from historical contexts, such as Mr. and Mrs. McMullen, providing a nuanced portrayal of the social dynamics and attitudes of the time. These characters contribute to the authenticity of the historical setting and serve as catalysts for Eva and Jim's interactions.


The characterization in the story extends far beyond individual personas to explore themes of identity, cultural clash, and the impact of choices on personal growth. The author carefully crafts characters whose arcs intersect and diverge, creating a narrative that is both character-driven and conceptually rich.


Marchman’s narrative chops shines in the intimate moments shared between the characters. Whether it's the playful banter during a horseback ride, the emotional scenes, or the heated discussions about societal norms, Marchman excels in creating scenes that resonate emotionally with the reader. The dialogue feels organic, flows well, and thoroughly immerses the reader in their world. The characters' vulnerabilities and struggles are portrayed with authenticity, creating a deep connection between the reader and the story.


As Eva begins to settle into her new life, Marchman introduces philosophical discussions about the meaning of life, the intricacies of interconnected souls, and the implications of altering timelines. These contemplative elements are thought-provoking layer and poignant, inviting readers to ponder existential questions alongside the characters.

The clash between the ethics of Lux Libera's advanced society and the historical context of 1835 Texas becomes a crucible for moral introspection. The story deftly navigates the intricacies of cultural clash, prompting reflections on moral relativism. The characters – mainly Eva – find themselves confronting the challenge of imposing contemporary values on societies of the past, raising poignant questions about cultural sensitivity, understanding, and the potential ethical pitfalls of judgment.


The novel scrutinizes their individual responses to systemic injustice, shedding light on the moral responsibility to challenge societal norms and the complex dynamics of occupying the moral high ground within historical constraints.


Identity and self-understanding become poignant themes as characters grapple with their roles as well. Jim's dual identity as a Comanche raised among Anglo settlers prompts profound questions about cultural allegiance and moral duty. Simultaneously, Eva wrestles with the conflict of her identity as a Lux Libera operative, navigating the moral impact of her actions across different timelines.


The evolving relationship between Eva and Jim introduces nuanced moral dilemmas regarding personal boundaries, cultural norms, and societal expectations. The novel delves into the complexity of their connection, creating tension between personal desires and the ethical considerations of their extraordinary circumstances.

If she held a weapon, would she shoot? The choice to save one was often the choice to destroy another. And which was more worthy? Neither. Both.”


As the narrative unfolds, characters like Eva and Pump find themselves entangled in moral conundrums concerning responsibilities to others, both within and outside their temporal community. The novel prompts reflection on the moral imperative to intervene, help, or withhold information based on a sense of duty, emphasizing the profound consequences of such decisions.


Marchman doesn’t shy away from darker themes, either, particularly in Jim's chapters, addressing historical conflicts, trauma, and the complexities of cultural identity. The author handles these themes with sensitivity, allowing readers to empathize with the characters' struggles while shedding light on the historical realities of the time.


"The Mender" successfully balances historical depth, philosophical inquiry, and emotional resonance, creating a multifaceted reading experience that is enjoyable and poignant. Marchman's fluid prose, well-written characters, and immersive plot make this novel a standout in the genre of historical fiction with a speculative twist. If you’re a fan of time travel stories, or enjoyed the TV show “The Man in the High Castle”, this is a series you will certainly want to pick up.



“The Mender” by Jennifer Marchman receives five stars and the “Highly Recommended” award of excellence from The Historical Fiction Company



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