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For All Time

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Two teens relive their tragic love story over and over until they uncover what they must do to change their fate.

Tamar is a musician, a warrior, a survivor. Fayard? He’s a pioneer, a hustler, a hopeless romantic.

Together, Tamar and Fayard have lived a thousand lives, seen the world build itself up from nothing only to tear itself down again in civil war. They’ve even watched humanity take to the stars. But in each life one thing remains the same: their love and their fight to be together. One love story after another. Their only concern is they never get to see how their story ends. Until now.

When they finally discover what it will take to break the cycle, will they be able to make the sacrifice?

368 pages, Hardcover

First published September 28, 2021

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About the author

Shanna Miles

3 books132 followers
Shanna Miles is an author, reviewer and librarian who lives in Georgia with her two daughters, and educator husband and advocates tirelessly for appropriate representation for marginalized people in children’s fiction. Her passion is Paranormal Romance, but she also has a deep affinity for diverse Science Fiction like that of Octavia Butler and Sherri L. Smith. “Willow Born” is Shanna Miles’ latest work.

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5 stars
115 (15%)
4 stars
232 (31%)
3 stars
270 (36%)
2 stars
106 (14%)
1 star
16 (2%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 235 reviews
Profile Image for Hailey (Hailey in Bookland).
611 reviews87.5k followers
February 5, 2022
DNF @ 65%
I really wanted to like this but I'm so sad that I couldn't even finish it. I think I just didn't click with the writing. I started physically reading it but felt like my attention kept wandering, so then I switched to the audiobook and it was a better choice, however I still felt very confused and disconnected. I didn't quite understand what was happening and was kind of getting something different than expected. I think this book really needed a connection with the characters but because I found the bouncing around to be so jarring and confusing, I never got that. I'm so sad this didn't work for me honestly, because it seemed really unique and cool. I think the concept is hard to execute and it just missed for me.
Profile Image for Fanna.
992 reviews502 followers
January 18, 2022
Romance. Tragedy. Reincarnation. I wish it was this easy to sum up For All Time but honestly, there's so much more: star-crossed lovers, different lifetimes, history and future across centuries, doomed destinies, and the inevitability of what's meant to be.

For All Time is a debut young adult romance that hopefully traverses tragedy and fate across multiple timelines.

Told through alternating narrations and shifting perspectives of the Black teenagers, this time-hopping love story unfolds in the present-day while swinging through a parallel plane that spans the 14th century, the 1920s, and the 2200s.

Tamar has survived COVID but her lung condition is now deteriorating. Fayard is willing to do anything for her. She's realistic and rational; he's a hopeless romantic. While the two spend their last minutes together before Tamar sets off for an overseas cryogenic center, her last option to survive in some sense, an explosion goes off at the airport, killing everyone but them. Waking up in a hospital, they have no memory of themselves, but an emotional string still connects the two. As Tamar and Fayard struggle to remember their present life, dreams unravel their past lives. Unfortunately, it all always ends in a tragedy. When they finally realize this cycle, these soulmates must quickly figure out how to break this destined wheel and get a happily ever after—if one exists.

Is this science-fiction meets historical fiction? Yes. Is this literary fiction meets teen romance? Yes. Is this truly ambitious and refreshing? Yes. While the romantic core of this story is held strongly by the absolute submission that love demands, the themes that Miles attempts to engage with across the various timelines truly strengthen the tenderness of this story. From life-changing effects of the pandemic to repeated mistakes and from the racial discrimination in American history to the arrogance of a pioneering future, the author truly committed to writing a speculative with a tinge of reality—or reality with a twist of speculative.

Reading For All Time made me realize that sometimes we should read a story for what it is instead of what we wish for it to be. As someone who loves genre-bending novels, especially if they promise me sadness lined with hope, I knew I had to read this. And I would be lying if I say I didn't imagine it to be something else—maybe something more, maybe something less. But do I really want my expectations for a novel that's genuinely difficult to box before you actually dive into it to influence my feelings for it, now that I've read it? No. So I will say that it wasn't what I had conjectured; but I'll also say that it didn't have to be—it's a story of reincarnated soulmates destined for tragedy navigating the planes of different timelines to break a doomed fate—and I enjoyed reading it for exactly that.

if you wish to support: blog | ko-fi | twitter

02.01.2021 why, yes, I love some heart wrenching pain
Profile Image for ♥Milica♥.
888 reviews264 followers
October 5, 2021
The soulmates trope is my favourite trope, and when paired with reincarnation? Double win. I'm also big on time travel so this sounded like the perfect book for me.

It wasn't. That's really sad, because it had potential, interesting characters and good writing, but the execution wasn't good.

The beginning was the best part of the book, and the present chapters in general. The past ones were researched well, but I just kept waiting to see when we'd be back to now.

I also didn't like the ending. Still, I'm looking forward to seeing what Shanna Miles comes up with next, it'll be great.
Profile Image for Anniek.
1,761 reviews648 followers
July 22, 2021
This book was a 5 star prediction for me, but unfortunately, I really didn't click with it. I was hoping for drama and tragedy but instead I got a really confusing book that seemed to lack a clear plot that I couldn't get emotionally invested in. In fact, I can't believe I'm even going to say this, but I liked the "present day" parts best and wish those were fleshed out more. Everything just felt really underdeveloped to me.
Profile Image for Ms. Woc Reader.
491 reviews669 followers
October 19, 2021
This book was so unique compared to many of my YA reads. I'm not sure how to describe the premise outside of teens falling in love across lifetimes.

Let's start with present day South Carolina where Tamar is dealing with a long term illness she has as a side affect of the Covid 19 pandemic. She's in a relationship with Fayard but doesn't want to officially be his girlfriend because she thinks the label comes with too many expectations. She's afraid of dying and having to leave him behind but Fay really loves her and is determined to stop her from boarding a plane to try an experimental procedure so he shows up at the airport with a promise ring and a whole band of people.

Then readers are immediately thrust into 1920s Philadelphia. Shanna Miles does a great job of keeping readers guessing as we follow the characters story in Ancient Mali and a lunar base in 2260. It's a little confusing because you don't know how the story will go or what they're really searching for but Tamar and Fayard have so much chemistry it's easy to stay hooked.

I highly recommend the audiobook too because the narration is wonderful.
Profile Image for laurel [the suspected bibliophile].
1,412 reviews390 followers
August 31, 2021

I don't even know how to begin to describe this book, aside from the fact that the comp titles of Outlander meets Cloud Atlas with a healthy dash of science fantasy and a load of wtf is even happening in that final third act.

However, I really, really enjoyed this one, although I wanted more resolution at the end (although the actual ending is just fine). There were some timelines I wanted to explore more of, and I enjoyed the bouncing between 14th century Mali, 1924 America, the 23rd century, and a five-minutes into the future present day. The level of research and Black history and deft hints of other lives lived is encompassing and so well done, all wrapped into a love story arcing across a millennium (or more!).

At first it was a little hard to follow, because even though Fay and Tamar *technically* stay the same, they are not the same people, and their families, friends and environments shape them as they are—although there are some elements that remain constant: Tamar's ability with music, Fay's constant hustling, and the immediate chemistry that sparks and spits between the two until there is nothing left but their consuming love.

Anywho, definitely a book to pick up. It's well worth a read!

I received this ARC from NetGalley for an honest review
Profile Image for Kameel.
807 reviews91 followers
October 20, 2021
This was an interesting story....I think the basic moral of the story was true love will always find it's way back to you....The story showed how the couple always found their way to one another whenever and wherever they were in their lives. The story did a bit of time traveling from the 1300's all the way to 2032.....Some of the details in the story was a bit far fetched...but this was a decent story...The narration was outstanding.
Profile Image for Z - literaryeffect.
258 reviews151 followers
December 5, 2021
This premise though!! Love that spans lifetimes!!!! Basically, they’re lovers in their different lives though they don’t always get a happy ending. Eventually they try to figure out what keeps the cycle going.⁣

The chapters often switch from the present and their memories from their other lives as they call them. It was so cute seeing Tamar and Fayard with their different dynamics in various settings. I definitely enjoyed this read.⁣

— rating: 3.5/5
ARC received from Simon & Schuster through a Goodreads giveaway.
Profile Image for Ekene.
1,124 reviews125 followers
November 12, 2021
Reincarnation is a trope/plot I always am down for and the fact we got this with black love that expanded through many lifetimes makes it better
Profile Image for michelle (magical reads).
859 reviews219 followers
August 30, 2021
4.5 stars

read on my blog

rep: Black protagonists and side characters; (Black author)
cw: racism

**I received an ARC from the publisher as a giveaway prize. These are my honest opinions, and in no way was I compensated for this review.**

You travel together on a long journey, and what you seek you have yet to find, but time is a jealous god. You have escaped your fate. Destiny finds you again, as it always has, leading you on a path to the same destination.

I first heard about this book from Twitter and was immediately pulled in by its premise. As time went on, I became more and more excited to read it! Set in numerous eras and full of heart, For All Time is a love story that resonates throughout the ages.

Tamar and Fayard are destined to be together. In present day South Carolina, in 1325 Mali, in 1924 Pennsylvania, in futuristic space, they have always found each other, no matter what. Unfortunately, their love story is also always a tragedy, doomed until the next cycle begins. When they finally realize this, they must race to figure out how to change their fates.

I just love the concept of reincarnated soulmates in a tragic love story, so I knew this book was for me. The plot focuses on a few of Tamar’s and Fayard’s lives; their families and circumstances change and one or the other usually dies, but they always find each other. It was fascinating catching all the little parallels in their different lives.

The switches between Tamar’s and Fayard’s points-of-view, in addition to the time period changes, were seamlessly done. I was never startled by these shifts because the transitions are effortless and clear-cut. This story juggles at least four different plots, but it never feels too overwhelming. I also loved how simple, yet gorgeous, the writing was because it added to the soft yet desperate tone of the story.

I really liked our main characters! Again, their surroundings change but their characters remain the same. Tamar is practical and realistic, while Fayard is a dreamer and a hopeless romantic. It’s easy to see how they wouldn’t work together, but they just do. The romance was so soft; Fayard is willing to do anything for Tamar, pursuing her in every lifetime. I teared up at their declarations of love sometimes.

Unfortunately, this is one of those books that I loved but can’t talk about in a proper way because it’s difficult to pin down and talk about everything that I loved about it. Please just trust me and read it! Even though I was busy while reading it, I couldn’t stop reading every time I was able to pick it up. This book will easily and quickly make its way into your heart, and I can’t wait to read more from this author!

How can you miss something you don’t even remember having?

For All Time is a tragic love story that spans thousands of lives. I loved the concept of reincarnated soulmates destined to be together, as well as the protagonists. If you want a soft yet strong romance, I can’t recommend For All Time enough!

original review:

bruh this BOOK!!! reincarnated soulmates ahhhhh I loved it so much
Profile Image for Robin.
885 reviews202 followers
Shelved as 'dnf'
September 12, 2021
DNF @ 9%

I was really enjoying the writing of this and I absolutely adore the premise. Unfortunately I wasn't aware that this deals with the tragic, long-term medical effects of the pandemic. And I am 100% not ready for that content. So I'm practicing good self-care and putting this one aside. If you're at all triggered by illness or pandemic related things, this might be one you want to pass on.
Profile Image for Haadiya.
147 reviews74 followers
October 1, 2021
Black people time traveling you say? Here’s all my money!!

Tamar and Fayard were made for each other. They have always found each other, no matter where they are: in present-day South Carolina, in 1325 Mali, in 1924 Pennsylvania, or in futuristic space. Unfortunately, their love affair is always tragic, doomed to repeat itself till the next cycle begins. They must hurry to figure out how to change their destiny once they discover this.

This book was, admittedly, a little confusing at times. The timelines that flowed throughout the novel were sometimes seamlessly integrated together…and sometimes not so effortlessly. It was a beautiful getaway and an enjoyable read overall.

This is a love story with a twist. The plot appeared to be flowing in one way, smoothly transitioning from section to section until the true state of their history was exposed. Shanna Miles did a fantastic job of carefully moving the plot along certain that you knew what was going to happen as you got closer to the end.

The book became increasingly convoluted and perplexing toward the end, but the conclusion is inevitably gratifying. I like the story’s dual POV structure, as well as Shanna Miles’ willingness to examine darker themes such as racism, class, social ills, and even death.

This book is absolutely amazing. I had a great time reading about Fay and Tamar’s multiple lives. They are such enthralling individuals, who remain consistent while also changing through time.

I’d recommend this book to you if you enjoy time travel, shifting storylines, unexpected twists and turns, witty characters and of course, love.

Thanks a million to TurnThePageTours for having me on this tour and to Simon and Schuster for sending a beautiful copy of this book my way!
Profile Image for may ✨.
73 reviews35 followers
October 24, 2021
3,5! Full review on my blog.

I love books that have time as a main theme so I was excited about this one. Beautifully written, many interesting ideas. A very ambitious novel but the plot was a bit disappointing to me. It lacked something that would’ve really made the different timelines fit together! Still enjoyed it a lot.

While it wasn’t the perfect book for me, I still admire the beautiful writing and original ideas that made this novel very special and unique, in my opinion. I’d recommend this to people who like love stories, poetic writing, and more character-driven books.

Thank you so much to NetGalley and Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers for this eARC!

content warnings: racism (includes segregation, physical violence, use of slurs), colorism, pandemic, illness, hospital, injury, misogyny, threat of rape, death of a loved one, plane crash, brief mention of suicide. themes of war, colonialism, displacement, violence.
Profile Image for Caylie Ratzlaff.
509 reviews26 followers
September 12, 2021
Thanks NetGalley and the publisher for the eARC of this novel. 2/5 stars.

Look, I really really REALLY wanted to like this. I love the idea of starcrossed lovers, the possible relations I could do to R&J, but I just couldn't get into it. At all. Yes, I finished it...but I wanted the ending to come ASAP and it took me almost 2 weeks to read it. Tamar and Fayid's love story is unique and so is the concept...but it just wasn't good? I would have preferred 2-3 stories of the timeline more in-depth, and the sudden science fiction element just felt thrown in there to serve as the plot point. Oh no, fancy space egg! Like...yes it's cool and I think people will like it, but it just wasn't for me. I don't think it meshed well together, and I don't think the explanation of why it kept happening to them was explained well at all, nor does the ending make sense in regards to the 'prophecy.'

This had SO much potential and it just fell flat.
Profile Image for CW ✨.
644 reviews1,692 followers
December 8, 2021
I was really looking forward to this because the 'fated to love' and 'reincarnation' trope is one of my favourite tropes ever, but unfortunately I didn't jel with the story.

- Follows two Black teens, who are destined to fall in love with each other across lifetimes - except their love story always ends in tragedy.
What I liked:
- The writing was certainly my favourite part of For All Time. It's gorgeously written, incredibly evocative, and full of raw emotion.
- Tamar and Fayard were good characters, and I liked how the story presents two characters who are different across their different lifetimes, but retain the 'core' of who they are.

So what I didn't like:
- I thought the concept was very interesting, but parts of the story felt fragmented, and I found it difficult to connect to a specific timeline (though, I did find the futuristic one the most interesting).
- Perhaps I missed something (and I'm open to the possibility that I did miss something) but I found some questions presented in the story unanswered. Usually I wouldn't mind much, but the questions asked were interesting so was disappointed that they weren't resolved.
- This is purely personal, but I was disappointed by the ending. I think the core message of the ending was good - and an interesting subversion of the trope - but I didn't find it satisfying; I just found it anticlimatic. Again, this is my personal view and has no bearing on the book's quality - you may like the ending yourself!

Content warning: death themes, suicide (not explicitly in text), physical violence, racism
Profile Image for Arisha.
158 reviews24 followers
June 27, 2022
This took me wayyy to long to read. It was a really good book and I loved the story telling, but it just wasn't for me. I couldn't tell what it was. Maybe it was because it was character driven. Maybe it was the writing style. Maybe I just get confused easily. But it was a great novel, and deserves all of the love.
Profile Image for Damien.
122 reviews
October 1, 2021
I enjoyed the book with the doomed love story through out the ages.. what it stemmed from? You’ll have to read the book.

The characters are in this cycle until they maybe fix it? I recommend it. I did not like the abuse of Tamar throughout her lifetimes.
Profile Image for Monica Lourenco .
89 reviews4 followers
March 25, 2022
This book was about 3 stars for me. I liked the present time story and its characters, and would be happy to read that only story since the author's writing style was good to me. Maybe it is only me, but I couldn't find a connection to the other stories. I don't have a problem with time traveling and going back and forth on a story, but I think the plot of this story was confusing and I just couldn't understand the point of it. At times, it felt like 4 different short stories, although I liked how the author displays the main characters' same traits throughout the stories. I think the four stories (by themselves) were pretty good, but something was missing when connecting them.
Profile Image for Marissa.
543 reviews11 followers
April 6, 2022
Interesting concept, not the best execution. Admittedly this is not really my type of book. I’m not into romance or fated lovers and that whole thing. Also I found some “timelines” more interesting than others, making the ones I didn’t like a slog to get through. This book doesn’t have a clear beginning, middle, and end; the lack of plot structure feels all sloppy. I think I would have enjoyed this better as a series of short stories rather than a full narrative.
Profile Image for Shay H..
57 reviews
March 18, 2022
4.5 stars. I really enjoyed this story. Soul mates, fate, and destiny all in one love story? It was executed well. I liked the main characters, Fay more than Tamar. She was less commutative which was an irritant for me but I was able to not let it ruin the story. This is my type of story so I really enjoyed going on the journey through many lives with them.
Profile Image for Raven.
441 reviews44 followers
December 31, 2021
I don’t know much to say about this book except I was just bored. I didn’t feel connected to the characters. I didn’t have any feelings towards them in terms of romance and the time jumping was written in a way where it was a little confusing.

Some people may enjoy it but it just wasn’t for me.
Profile Image for Kat.
783 reviews27 followers
March 25, 2022
Wow! This story was so complex. The idea of reincarnation and time travel with a sprinkle of one true loves had me hooked!
Profile Image for Gabriel.
126 reviews96 followers
December 29, 2022
The concept of the story is great, but I feel like it failed to intrigue me enough to finish the book, but I think it could have been better if the author had provided the book with longer chapters in order for me to get to know the lead characters then maybe I would have read the story from the beginning to the end.
Profile Image for Sistaharlem.
162 reviews1 follower
February 19, 2022
I didn't want this book to end. How many life lessons can a couple receive over multiple timelines? A beautiful written story.
Displaying 1 - 30 of 235 reviews

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