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Author: Mary Cunningham

Illustrator: Nathalie Moore, cover art

Reserve at the Library

Publisher: Echelon Press,

Material: paperback

Summary: Having recently returned from one time-travel adventure that explored her grandmother's life, Cynthia was ready to start a new journey. Her friend Gus (Augusta Lee) wasn't so sure; and after they ended up as clowns in a circus in 1914, she was MOST certain she was ready to go home! During this journey, the girls spend some up-close-and-personal time with family members, and meet some new characters, too. This is the second book in the Cythia's Attic time travel adventure series.

Type of Reading: bedtime story, independent reading, read aloud book

Recommended Age: read together: 8 to 12; read yourself: 10 and up

Interest Level: 8 to 13

Reading Level: 5.6

Age of Child: Teen STAR Review Team, Be the Star You Are!™

Young Reader Reaction: The glowing red paper with golden, sparkling images on the front cover is conspicuously attractive. I definitely enjoyed reading this book, mainly because the setting is filled with exploring, mysterious secrets. I would surely recommend this book to teenagers around 14- 15. The author paints a realistic, thrilling adventure for the readers. What a thrilling story!

Adult Reader Reaction: This was as enjoyable as the first volume. You'll need to read The Missing Locket first. Although introducing the gypsies made for an interesting plot, I'm looking forward to the next book when the girls are again 'closer to home' in discovering their families' past.

Pros: This is a fun, quick read. The plot moves quickly and the time travel is queued just enough to give context to the story (not bog you down in history).

Cons: The author took great pains to "set up" this story by explaining what happened in volume one. It got a little tedious, as this reader was ready to jump in en route to the circus.


Educational Themes: Although time travel is the literary device, there isn't a lot of 'history' in the book. Still, it is an interesting read and could encourage kids to create their own stories based on interviews with relatives.

Literary Categories: Fiction - science fiction, adventure, middle grade series, mystery, time travel, 1900s, 1960s, friendship

Date(s) Reviewed: October 2006

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