Fantasy Literary Fiction

In the Shadow of Time – Kevin Ansbro

15 November 2021
In the Shadow of Time Book Cover In the Shadow of Time
Kevin Ansbro
2qt Limited (Publishing)
30 August 2021

"I was in Mexico City for three months, and yet returned to England on the same day that I left..."

Through her time-travel research, physicist Dr Sofia Ustinova has attracted the interest of higher beings from a distant galaxy...

Luna, a porcelain-skinned teenager, lives alone in a Danish forest where she guards an astonishing secret...

Pablo, an optimistic shoeshine boy, struggles to earn a living on the sweltering streets of Mexico City...

Meanwhile, Hugo Wilde, a British secret agent, embarks on a mission to kill a Russian assassin, unaware that his life is about to change in ways he could never have imagined...


Kevin Ansbro is an author who excels in raising your spirits and immersing you in an absorbing novel. Full of enthralling action and clever humour, In the Shadow of Time is Kevin’s latest book, and it had me lost for words for a long time after I finished it. I’m glad I left it for a few weeks before writing this review because I’m still drawn to just how sublime the experience was.

The pages come alive under Kevin’s pen as he creates a world that for the most part looks familiar, but of course, nurtured through the eyes of an artist, we have a unique and captivating experience. A world full of adventure calling its characters to explore it with exciting possibilities. Kevin’s prose is vividly rich and flowing, illustrating that a fantastic lyricist can also be a riveting storyteller.

Hugo Wilde, a nobleman by birth and an MI6 assassin by profession, and Dr Sofia Ustinova, renowned leading physicist and wife to one the Kremlin’s most celebrated killers, cross paths when Hugo assassinates her husband. The death of Viktor solved a problem for them both and started a relationship that would revel in fantasy, magic, adventure, drama, kindness, loss, love and would profoundly impact their lives and the lives of others they encountered.

“If you could truly get away from all of this and start a new life in another time, another place, would you? Wilde noted her earnestness and treated the question with the sincerity it deserved. In all honesty, if I had the opportunity to do such a thing with you, Sofia, I would seize it with both hands.”

Other threads introducing a young girl, Luna, of mystical qualities in Silkeborg Forest, Denmark in 1986, a young boy Pablo, with intuitive artistic talent from 1970, a housemaid, Maria, religious with a common-sense perspective on life from 1970s Mexico, and Hugo’s most loyal friend and one-time saviour, Vincent O’Toole, from 2020, come together in an exciting way.

Living one’s life will be a roller-coaster of sorrow and joy, but with the support of devoted friends, those difficult times become more manageable and the happy times more rewarding. When a dedicated group of friends establish a strong bond, they behave as family. The makeshift group that Hugo and Sofia form, brings a tapestry of adventures, relationships, ambitions, successes, and losses. In the Shadow of Time is more than a story focusing on time travel but rather an adventure where a time machine is used to assemble this intriguing array of characters in a time and place full of atmosphere and pulsating opportunities – Mexico City in 1970. The city is full of personality, atmosphere, intrigue, and where opportunities for someone with advanced knowledge of future events can make a difference. Hugo and Sofia grasp their new situation with open arms and a passion for doing something that will have a tangible impact on the lives of others. The group contribute their talents and unique abilities to an enthralling story that is just a pleasure to read.

The book In the Shadow of Time is a time machine in itself, as it transports you to a different time and place with all your senses triggered. Beautifully written and engaging as all great stories should be, I would highly recommend this outstanding book regardless of your favourite genre.

Peter Donnelly

Founder of The Reading Desk, supporting readers, authors, publishers and book industry. Top Reviewer on Amazon, Goodreads, and NetGalley

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