YA fantasy, not something I usually read, but dang if it wasn’t a pretty nifty tale. It is a story about time travel, another genre niche which I don’t usually care for, but it turned out to be a fine story which kept me turning pages
A fifteen-year-old boy meets an elderly professor in a bike shop, which offers antique bicycles. The professor has a heart attack, and calls young Miles to his hospital bedside to confess that he is a time traveler, and needs Miles to go to 1928 England for him and bring back a girl who is there ‘out of time’, who doesn’t belong in that time period.
On telling the plot, it does seem like a flimsy excuse, and how is Miles to actually accomplish this? Well, turns out there is a portal in the Vermont woods, which Miles’ family will be conveniently visiting shortly. Miles insists on hauling his antique bike with him so he can secretly take it through the portal.
He goes through the portal, bangs his head on a low branch, and wakes up in 1928 rural England, where a young lad takes him to the local doctor for treatment. He gets a job at the great house, (you know, like Downton Abby, and comes face to face with the British class system, circa pre-WWII.
It is a clever mashup of history and modern times, and if the story line of finding a girl “out of time” is a little odd, perhaps even hooky, it is still a fun read. There are some convenient exceptions to what one can bring through the portal from the future, and we meet some interesting characters, there is the feel good denouement in the 1928 story, and then a feel good ending in modern times.
This is a fun read, and by no means is it a fictionalized treatise on the physics of time travel. It is just a story, and a lovely one at that.