Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

The Time Quake

The Time Quake

Linda Buckley-Archer
Fiction  Series
For ages 10 to 12
Simon and Schuster, 2009   ISBN: 978-1416915294

Most of us would, if we were given the opportunity, jump at the chance to travel back in time. Imagine being able to see what life was like one hundred years ago. Or two hundred years ago even. Kate Dyer and Peter Shock have learned first hand that traveling back in time is not as much fun as it might seem. In fact, being stuck in the eighteenth century for a time has given them a whole new appreciation for their boring every day lives in the twenty-first century.

Back in time once again, Kate and Peter are trying to find the Tar Man, a criminal from the past who has learned all too well how to use time travel to line his pockets. The time machine that he stole is being used by an English aristocrat called Lord Luxon. Lord Luxon is having a grand time traveling back and forth in time. He is determined to make a name for himself, and his goal is to make sure that America does not win its independence from the British Crown. All he has to do is to change the past, and American will remain a British colony. What Lord Luxon does not know is that his trips through time are having a detrimental effect on the universe as a whole. Every time he travels back or forward in time, a new parallel universe is created. While he plans and schemes from his headquarters in New York City, time quakes are terrifying London residents. Time itself is becoming fragile and it is spinning out of control.

As they try to track down the Tar Man with their eighteenth century friends, Peter and Kate discover that something terrifying is happening to Kate. With every passing day, she is becoming more and more insubstantial. Her atoms are drifting apart due to her sensitivity to time travel, and the only way she can prevent herself from zooming through time is to hold on to Peter. Literally. Peter is her anchor and whenever she lets go of him she starts “fast forwarding” through time.

Young readers are sure to enjoy this final book in the Gideon Trilogy. Exciting revelations, glimpses into the inner hearts of the characters, and a story that could have a most unfortunate ending will keep readers sitting on the edge of their seats.