97. The Keeper's Quest, Kelly Nelson
The Keeper's Quest is second in a series of books featuring Chase Harper, who has discovered that he is a Keeper, someone charged to keep safe a counter that lets him travel through time, and to use his abilities to protect the innocent.
To me, this seemed to suffer from the same problem that many second books do: the first book has a clear story arc, but the second is tasked with setting up the crisis of the third book, and so the plot struggles to find its footing for a while. (Then, too, I have to admit I have not read the first book in this series, which might explain why I had trouble connecting to the characters as quickly).
In this book, Chase has managed to save the life of Ellie, a girl he loves and rescued from the 19th century, and while she adjusts to life in the twenty-first century, Chase goes on a couple of short missions--to 1817, to work on the Erie Canal and earn money to pay Ellie's hospital bills, and to the 1940s, to rescue a fellow Keeper from the Nazis. But it's not until 2/3 of the way through the book, when Chase stumbles into a Sniffer's plot (the Sniffers are minions of the Keepers' nemesis, who sends Sniffers out to find and destroy them), that things really start happening. Prior to that, the plot feels like it's just filling time, with one thing after another, rather than having a central conflict (something Chase wants, but must fight against odds to have).
While I think that the Keeper/time travel concept is interesting, I think the book as a whole would have been stronger if the first part were edited more, to get to the central conflict more quickly.
Then again, lots of Goodreads reviewers loved this book, so maybe it's just me . . .