Review : The Mine : John A. Heldt








In May 2000, Joel Smith is a cocky, adventurous young man who sees the world as his playground. But when the college senior, days from graduation, enters an abandoned Montana mine, he discovers the price of reckless curiosity. He emerges in May 1941 with a cell phone he can’t use, money he can’t spend, and little but his wits to guide his way. Stuck in the age of swing dancing and a peacetime draft, Joel begins a new life as the nation drifts toward war. With the help of his 21-year-old trailblazing grandmother and her friends, he finds his place in a world he knew only from movies and books. But when an opportunity comes to return to the present, Joel must decide whether to leave his new love in the past or choose a course that will alter their lives forever. THE MINE follows a humbled man through a critical time in history as he adjusts to new surroundings and wrestles with the knowledge of things to come.

Furry Gremlin



 The Mine is exactly what description says it is. It’s about Joel Smith who goes to Montana, finds an abandoned mine, walks inside and goes back in time 1941. And I’m afraid that’s all that happens for the most part. He lives among the people of the era, makes friends, finds a job and falls in love. He sees a little bit of trouble and finds it difficult to tell people where and when he is from. Unfortunately, the author takes seventy chapters to tell this, what should have been, short story. It was just too long for what it was, and it dragged out in places. Don’t get me wrong, there were some parts that I liked, but not all of them. The author could have told the story in half the chapters and it would have gone from an okay book to a good one. It’s a shame really, because I love things about time travel, and when I picked it up I was excited to read it. However, the context is lacking, even though the concept is a good one.

Anyway, the book ends as it should have ended, which is what I was rooting for, so that was good. I also liked the characters, I just wish it would have gone a little faster and read a little smoother.

So it’s 3 out of 5 stars for The Mine. It was an okay book, but I found myself having to dig for the gold in it. ~ Laura Del


John A. Heldt is the author of the critically acclaimed Northwest Passage 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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