Out of Time

The Dream Traveler Book 1

Fiction - Crime
294 Pages
Reviewed on 08/26/2018
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Out of Time is the first in a planned series of books that focuses on the exploits of Detective Constable Sean McMillan - The Dream Traveler.
The second book from the series will be available before the end of 2018. For questions or enquiries, he can be contacted via email at: ernestohlee@gmail.com

    Book Review

Reviewed by Lex Allen for Readers' Favorite

With The Dream Traveler Book I, author Ernesto H. Lee begins the Out of Time series, a time-traveling, cold-case detective story that impresses with verisimilitude and fast-paced action. Detective Constable (DC) Sean McMillan has a unique ability to travel back in time through the medium of his dreams. However, Sean soon discovers that changes to the past to influence the future can have unexpected and deadly consequences. The past is not the past, the future is not set and nothing in life is certain.

Utilizing personal knowledge and experiences of dreams, the entanglement theory of quantum physics, and a superb imagination, Ernesto Lee introduces unforgettable characters and lays the groundwork for what I believe will be a hit series for fans of science fiction and detective/crime stories. As with all great characters, DC McMillan embodies a likeable personality engaged in battle with criminal elements while keeping his personal demons and unusual talents secret. Other than McMillan, the remaining players are reminiscent of characters in any number of detective/crime novels; the loyal partner, the hard core boss that's actually soft inside, the bad guy bully without redeeming features, et al. These characters, however, are perfect in that they complement the fantastic story and lead character without distraction.

Without giving away a spoiler, the process of McMillan's time travel, both going and coming, is unique in the extreme. Verisimilitude is an important factor in fiction that oft times offends readers sensitive to crude language or graphic violence and/or sex. Lee uses language relevant to the locations and characters' personalities perfectly. For me, it's a highlight in Lee's story telling talent and I'm looking forward to the next book in the series.

Jack Magnus

Out of Time: The Dream Traveler Book 1 is a police procedural novel written by Ernesto H. Lee. Detective Constable Sean McMillan takes his work home with him -- quite literally. He has honed his lucid dreaming skills to the point where he can travel back in time and even pinpoint where in the past he will end up. His assignment to the Cold Case Squad is a perfect fit for a detective with his skills, and his current focus, on a psychopathic killer and heavy named Paul Donovan, has had him spending his nights back in 1994 at the King George, the pub where Sean suspects Donovan killed one of his opponents during a Pub League Pool Tournament. The files show this as an unsolved crime. Any witnesses stated that a large black man had killed Anthony Glennister during a fight. Throughout the years they’ve held firm to that story, but Sean is determined to get to the truth.

Ernesto H Lee’s police procedural novel, Out of Time: The Dream Traveler Book 1, is an intriguing and well-written story that features a time-traveling detective. DC McMillan is a marvelous main character whose nightly travels seem to keep him slightly out of the modern loop most people find themselves in. Add to that the film noir quality of those dream sequences, and you have a marvelous start to a police series that’s decidedly different and well worth following. Lee’s plot is a solid one, and the armchair sleuth will have a challenging time figuring out what McMillan’s next move will be. I’m looking forward to future investigations featuring the Cold Case Squad and DC Sean McMillan. Out of Time: The Dream Traveler Book 1 is most highly recommended.

Melinda Hills

A twenty-four-year-old cold case murder and a very special detective constable, Sean McMillan, are the subjects of Out of Time by Ernesto H. Lee. Sean possesses a secret ability that he hopes will enable him to find the evidence he needs to close this case, but the problem with going back into the past and changing things is not knowing what other changes may occur. Sean can at least go back again in his dream life and make new changes, but sometimes things are not meant to be easy. Unfortunately, there are powers at work that thwart Sean at every step so for all that he tries to accomplish, he digs deeper and deeper holes in his present day life. His partner, Catherine, does not trust him, his superior officer is about ready to fire him, and the bad guys just keep doing their thing, knowing that they are protected. Sean had hoped to move ahead in his career, but he may just be on the verge of cutting it very short.

Well written and quite engaging, Out of Time is a fantastic introduction to The Dream Traveler series by Ernesto H. Lee. Based on an interesting concept of time travel through dreaming, Lee provides plenty of action and psychological involvement as Sean McMillan tries to bring a criminal to justice after more than 20 years. The additional sub-plots add tremendously to the conflict and keep you wondering how things can possibly work out. The language is quite British, but the passion is real and the quest is well worth following. With a story like Out of Time to start things off, The Dream Traveler series should be quite a success!

Emily-Jane Hills Orford

Sean McMillan is a detective in the cold cases division of the police department. He is also a time traveler, or more accurately, as he calls it, a dream traveler. He dreams a time and location and he’s there. A handy tool for someone looking for clues to help him solve cold cases in the past. Only, the case he’s currently working on requires many jumps back in time and it quickly becomes more than just a simple murder case where the witnesses are bullied into lying about what really happened. The case quickly reveals more than one dirty cop and a huge cover-up, but not enough evidence to prove either the murder or the guilt of the dirty cop. It’s not just the lack of evidence. Every time Sean goes back in time, something is changed and these changes have dire consequences on the outcomes that unravel in his present time.

Time travel is an interesting concept. The idea of being able to go back in time through dreams is an added intrigue, especially when the time and place is controllable. Ernesto H. Lee has woven a fastening mystery through time in his thriller, Out of Time: The Dream Traveler Book 1. The story is told in first person, from Sean McMillan’s point of view. There is a lot of narrative, but dialogue is effectively inserted to move the plot along. The characters are well developed, though, in the end, one wonders if there really is anyone in the police department that can be trusted. The plot escalates effectively with lots of action and drama. The resolution leads to a surprise and an unexpected ending. Or is it an ending? This is a series, after all. Hopefully the next book will allow Sean to apprehend the dirty cops and move on to another case.

Deborah Lloyd

Detective Constable Sean McMillan is now part of the Cold Case Squad in a small town outside of London, England. He and Detective Constable Catherine Swain have been assigned the twenty-four-year-old case of the murder of Anthony Glennister. He was killed in the King George Pub in Feltham in 1994. DC McMillan has a recently honed gift; he can dream travel, which is traveling back in time through his dreams. When he visits the scene and the witnesses on the night of the murder, he awakens with new information. He can even change some aspects of the event. Although he cannot explain exactly how he knows these facts to Catherine or his supervisor, the case advances to threatening conclusions. In Out of Time: The Dream Traveler, Book One, written by Ernesto H. Lee, an unique method of solving crimes is introduced.

This book is both entertaining and thought-provoking. Although a reader may not believe in the possibility of time travel, or working through the modality of dreams, the story will still be captivating. The author is a skilled writer, as the story flows easily back and forth from the early 1990s to 2018, and a number of the characters appear in both settings. The details of each time period, from fashion to cellphones, are well described and provide a realistic picture. Author Ernesto H. Lee has crafted a gripping murder mystery, with many twists and turns, in Out of Time: The Dream Traveler, Book One. What an interesting concept, and readers will certainly look forward to Book Two in this series.

Christian Sia

Out of Time is the first book in The Dream Traveler series by Ernesto H Lee, a novel that combines time travel, sleuthing, and adventure to offer a delectable treat to readers. Sean McMillan is a gifted detective, a man with the ability to travel through time using the medium of his dreams. Assigned to a cold-case squad, locating evidence for crimes in the past could have been something so easy — a piece of cake, as they say. But then Sean quickly realizes that the connection between the past and the future can’t just be altered. And there is far more at stake that he could ever have imagined.

This is a tale of an ingenious method of investigating, of crime, and an adventure that takes the protagonist into unexpected places. Readers will fall in love with the protagonist, a detective with an enviable gift, yet they will learn that not every gift is a blessing — some are actually crosses to bear. Out of Time has a great premise and a protagonist that is rock-solid, a well-developed and likeable character who will win the sympathy and admiration of readers.

The prose is flawless, and Ernesto H Lee’s economy of words, the excellent and apt diction, coupled with the power to evoke vivid images, are among the elements that make the writing enjoyable. This author doesn’t just know how to get your attention; he knows how to keep it, thanks to the use of suspense, the fast pacing, and the ingenious weaving of emotionally charged scenes into the narrative. I enjoyed every bit of this book and, for a first book, it is an explosive introduction to the series.

Sherri Fulmer Moorer

Sean McMillan is a different kind of detective. He doesn't just investigate cold case files, he can actually travel back in time through his dreams to revisit the scene of the crime and, sometimes, plant clues that help to solve the case decades later. At least, that's his intention when he takes on an unsolved murder case from 1994. The only problem is that he can't tell anybody about his special talent to travel through time, so he has to get creative about explaining his evidence. It seems that things are falling into place until his random presence through time is realized, and he uncovers evidence of corruption in his own department. Out of Time: The Dream Traveler Book One, by Ernesto H. Lee, is a suspense novel that takes you on a journey through two and a half decades that will keep you wondering how it all comes together until the very last page.

I enjoyed this book, mostly because of the unique time travel twist. Ernesto H. Lee does a masterful job of weaving the past and the present seamlessly, while also acknowledging the obvious perils of time travel. What's more, he does it with a unique humor that fits not just with McMillan's character, but with the overall plot as well. Likewise, the time travel angle exposes elements of the crime in question that would have gone undetected if not for McMillan's wanderings through time, as it allows both the character and the readers to see more of the "big picture"than would normally be possible. I do like this twist, and think that Sean McMillan is not only an interesting, but unique and capable character. I can't wait to see how the author manages the continuation of this saga in Book 2. Out of Time: The Dream Traveler Book One is an interesting, unique, and entertaining read that I highly recommend.

Lit Amri

Thirty-year-old detective Sean McMillan has the ability to time travel through his dreams, an advantage he used to investigate cold cases. He needs to come up with solid evidence for a 24-year-old murder case of a man in a pub, and he thinks he has found the key witness. He travels back and forth in time, manipulating some events in his favor. Unfortunately, changes in the past cause unexpected butterfly effects in the future. Sean also realizes that the obstacles to the case are much closer and more dangerous than he predicted.

As a fan of the time travel theme, the concept of Out of Time (The Dream Traveler, Book One) by Ernesto H. Lee easily piqued my interest. The combination of time travel and crime sleuth is solidly done. The narrative alternates between the past-1993 and 1994-and the present of 2018. The cyclical focus easily adds more depth to the plot, and Lee’s writing style fits the tone and setting of the story. There’s a lot of tension as the protagonist ironically races against time, despite being able to time travel, to bring the perpetrator to justice but he's out outmaneuvered by a vile mastermind.

The characters have good depth and fulfilled their roles. Sean McMillan’s cockiness comes from his ambition to climb the status ladder in his job but he is by no means a shallow person. His sense of justice and empathy for the victims is strong and more than enough to evoke myriad emotions from readers. My only peeve is that the ending is too much of a cliffhanger. That said, this is an entertaining read from Lee and I look forward to reading the sequel.

Jamie Michele

Out of Time: The Dream Traveler by Ernesto H. Lee is book one in the author's titular series, which follows Sean McMillan, a time traveling cold case detective. McMillan is able to tap into his ability to dream of a place and time, and then arrive at it. For someone who is tasked with the job of reopening cases that have been long thought hopeless, McMillan's tactics in their revival – while morally questionable – are wildly effective. But when the young detective is confronted with a case that requires a more intensive investigation and maneuvering that prompts multiple time hops, the consequences of not only returning through dreams, but what those dreams begin to uncover, come with catastrophic ramifications.

Ernesto H. Lee has written a phenomenal first installment to The Dream Traveler Series with Out of Time. Balancing the complexity of story lines that deal with time travel with the level of skilled narrative that readers demand in the genre is tricky and ambitious even for the most seasoned of writers. Lee seems to operate on an elevated level, managing not to require ridiculous suspension of belief with acceptable technicality and still producing a tale that delivers all the goods. Sean McMillan is wonderfully well developed and an easy main character to root for. The suspense and tension tear through the entire novel with fast paced twists artfully placed where they are least expected. I look forward to the second book in this creative new series and would highly recommend this book to all those who enjoy intelligent fiction that will both entertain and delight even the most exacting fans of this popular genre.