The second book in the Children of the Red King series, TIME TWISTER offers more magical fantasy that is fast paced and easy to read.
Henry Yewbeam and his younger brother, James, have been sent to stay with their cousins at the Bloor's Academy. It is one of the coldest days of the year, and all Henry wants to do is hide from his mean cousins and play marbles. He finds a nice, long hall and begins to roll his marbles. Then he discovers a marble that doesn't look familiar to him. Suddenly a series of strange events takes place. Henry begins to disappear. He quickly scribbles on the floor GIVE THE MARBLE TO JAMES, and then he vanishes from the year 1916.
From School Library Journal
Grade 4-7-In this sequel to Midnight for Charlie Bone (Scholastic, 2003), Nimmo continues the saga of the endowed descendants of the Red King, who attend a very Hogwarts-like boarding school called Bloor's Academy. "The Time Twister," a marblelike ball with the power to transport people through time, brings Henry Yewbeam from 1916 to present day Bloor's. His evil, scheming cousin Ezekiel, who was responsible for sending him to the future, is still alive, and Charlie Bone must protect Henry and find a way to send him back into the past. This is a breezy read, even at its 400-page length. Sadly, there are plot elements that seem to come totally out of the blue or that just don't make sense. The power with which each individual child is endowed, such as the ability to create storms or to transform into a bird, seems arbitrarily created to provide dramatic rescues. A painting of a wizard named Skarpo is left for Charlie by one of his aunts. As readers of the first book know, Charlie can hear voices in pictures, and they now discover that he can actually enter them as well. Oddly, Henry seems unfazed by his trip through time and by the modern world. The unexpected plot twist at the end is strangely unclimactic, and seems to pass by so quickly that any sense of triumph at the outcome is lost. Charlie Bone is a likable character to whom kids will turn to for a fix after they've finished the latest Harry Potter for the fifth time. For libraries where fantasy is popular.
Tim Wadham, Maricopa County Library District, Phoenix, AZ
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Gr. 5-7. In the second volume of a planned five, young Charlie discovers new dimensions to his magical talents while helping an age-mate who drops from thin air at wizardly Bloor Academy (and turns out to be a long-lost great-granduncle) escape the clutches of the Red King's less savory descendants. Like the first installment, this stays solidly in the Harry Potter slipstream--there's even a hidden chamber and a miraculous bird flying to the rescue. But it has some ingenious features of its own, including a cafe that admits only customers with pets, and such oddball magics as one character's involuntary ability to make every nearby light bulb explode. Nimmo's world is also darker than Rowling's (so far, at least), with the line between good guys and bad not as well defined. Still, Potterphiles, and many Snicketteers too, will find the territory comfortably familiar. John Peters
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About the Author
Jenny Nimmo lives in a converted watermill in Wales. Her husband, David, is a painter and print-maker, and all three of her children speak Welsh fluently. She finds Wales, a land of legends, a very inspiring place to live. For as long as she can remember, Jenny has loved books. She feels passionately that every child should have access to as many books as they want. Jenny enjoys writing about magic because it is inexplicable and unpredictable, and anything can happen. In 1986 her book, The Snow Spider, won the Smarties Grand Prix, and in 1987 it was awarded the Tir na n-Og by the Welsh Arts Council. The Rinaldi Ring, was chosen as Guardian Book of the Week and was shortlisted for the Carnegie Medal and received a commendation.