Review: Invictus by Ryan Graudin

33152795Invictus by Ryan Graudin
Publication Date: September 26th, 2017 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
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Rating: 4 Stars
Genre: Young Adult, Sci-fi & Fantasy, Time Travel
Find: Goodreads | Amazon
Goodreads Summary
Time flies when you’re plundering history.

Farway Gaius McCarthy was born outside of time. The son of a time-traveling Recorder from 2354 AD and a gladiator living in Rome in 95 AD, Far’s birth defies the laws of nature. Exploring history himself is all he’s ever wanted, and after failing his final time-traveling exam, Far takes a position commanding a ship with a crew of his friends as part of a black market operation to steal valuables from the past.

But during a heist on the sinking Titanic, Far meets a mysterious girl who always seems to be one step ahead of him. Armed with the knowledge that will bring Far’s very existence into question, she will lead Far and his team on a race through time to discover a frightening truth: History is not as steady as it seems.


Ryan Graudin’s Wolf by Wolf duology took the bookish community by storm, so expectations were high for this standalone novel. Does it reach the same standards as Wolf by Wolf? No, but that’s not a bad thing. What Invictus does is showcase Graudin’s versatility as an author. 

Invictus takes us on a journey through history. If you’ve ever wondered what it would be like to act as a fly on the wall in some of the greatest and tragic moment in history, this is the book for you. Time traveling is a tough topic to explore, but Graudin succeeds in establishing a complex but understandable time traveling system that highlights the delicate balance between acting as a passenger and influencer. One wrong step could alter the nature of history.

In this world, it is the duty of the Recorders to observe and document historic moments without influencing the course of the events taking place. That is what Farway Gaius Mcarthy was destined for. That is until he failed his final exam meaning his time traveling hopes are wiped out. That is until an opportunity arises where he has the chance to captain his own crew and toe the line between passenger and influencer by smuggling historic artifacts into his world. It’s a dangerous occupation to have, but one that is perfectly suited for the confident and arrogant leader. He’s never been one to truly follow the rules so this position allows him to fulfill his dreams to time travel, live on the edge, and search for the truth about his mother and the mystery surrounding his birth. 

He’s not alone on this journey and his crew members had distinct personalities of their own. Each member had a part to play and while they differ in personalities, they also make for a formidable team. Along with the historical elements in the book, the highlight was in the camaraderie of this group of smugglers. As different as they are the friendship between them is undeniable. There’s a surety in the bond that they share and exploring the various dynamics existing within this group made the journey all the more fascinating. 

Invictus is a thrilling race against time with plenty of twists and turns to keep readers on the edge of their seats. It’s a great book for anyone with an interest in exploring the complexities of time travel.

What did you think of Invictus?
Do you like time-traveling books?

4 thoughts on “Review: Invictus by Ryan Graudin

  1. Lovely review, Lois! ❤ I am really happy you enjoyed this book so much and yay for the friendship in it, I love a great crew like that :D. I haven't read anything by the author just yet, but heard AMAZING things about all of her books so far 😀

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Those are the best type of crews. I just love anything that has a great group of people that shine collectively as a team and as individuals. I’d definitely recommend her books, especially her Wolf by Wolf duology.

      Liked by 1 person

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