by Karen Akins
"At a school where Quantum Paradox 101 is a required course and history field trips are literal, sixteen year-old time traveler Bree Bennis excels... at screwing up.
After Bree botches a solo midterm to the 21st century by accidentally taking a boy hostage (a teensy snafu), she stands to lose her scholarship. But when Bree sneaks back to talk the kid into keeping his yap shut, she doesn't go back far enough. The boy, Finn, now three years older and hot as a solar flare, is convinced he’s in love with Bree, or rather, a future version of her that doesn't think he’s a complete pain in the arse. To make matters worse, she inadvertently transports him back to the 23rd century with her.
Once home, Bree discovers that a recent rash of accidents at her school are anything but accidental. Someone is attacking time travelers. As Bree and her temporal tag-along uncover seemingly unconnected clues—a broken bracelet, a missing data file, the art heist of the millennium—that lead to the person responsible, she alone has the knowledge to piece the puzzle together. Knowledge only one other person has. Her future self.
But when those closest to her become the next victims, Bree realizes the attacker is willing to do anything to stop her. In the past, present, or future. "
It took me almost a month to finish this one, and that is usually a very bad sign. It wasn't all bad, and I mildly enjoyed it, but I definitely could have lived without it. I found the time-travel element with all of the "Future Me" and "Past Me" references very convoluted and confusing. If some tiny thing in the past gets changed, wouldn't that have incredibly far-reaching consequences? Gordon B. Hinckley told the story of a passenger train that started out in Oakland, CA headed to Newark, NJ. When the train reached Newark, it was discovered that the baggage car wasn't there. When the officials looked for the baggage car, they found that it had made it to St. Louis correctly, but a switchman in St. Louis carelessly moved a piece of steel 3 inches and then pulled a lever to uncouple the car. A baggage car that belonged in Newark, NJ, actually ended up in New Orleans, LA, 1500 miles away, just because of 3 inches. Isn't it the same concept for time travel? Any tiny change in the past would have huge ramifications hundreds of years later. A small change would become a great gap and things would end up far differently, so I found all the visits in time to fix things very distracting. I know the author discusses the Doctrine of Inevitability, but then doesn't really seem to stick to it very well. And I do know that you have to suspend belief a little bit when reading time travel books, but this one just seemed a lot more awkward than others I have read. Maybe that is the consequence of having read it so slowly.
However, the book was fun and exciting with a snarky heroine fighting against all odds. I thought the author did a good job of building the future world - the Pentagon was fun :) . From what I understand this is a duology, so I will probably go ahead and get the second book for the library and hope the kids will not be as befuddled by it all as I was.
Areas of concern:
I don't remember any bad language, in fact the main character always substitutes the word "blark" or "blarking".
A couple of mild kisses.
Mildly intense action sequences.
Publisher's Weekly - Ages 13+
School Library Journal - Grades 9+
*Mrs. Duke says, "I'm not sure why the ages are so high on this one. It seemed like a very clean read to me".*