Book: The Time Travel Trap

The Time Travel Trap
Dan Jolley
illustrated by Matt Wendt
2008 (Graphic Universe/Lerner)

You’re jazzed about your science fair project until you find out that the guy next to you invented a time machine. Small comfort that he doesn’t really know how to work it, especially when it sucks you back in time! So, now what do you do? Save the princess or run for your life from a dinosaur?

The Time Travel Trap is a Twisted Journeys book. The Twisted Journeys series is in the same vein as the Choose Your Own Adventure one, but much of the story is told in the style of a comic book (with sequential art and word balloons). This style works really well for the time travel story because we actually get to see each time period, not just hear descriptions of it. I found 31 endings and spent time in five different time periods, allowing for numerous interesting twists to the story (many of which don’t turn out very well).

While I enjoyed this story and found that it utilized the format of this series in a more interesting and effective way than any I have previously read, I still found that I wanted more from it. I felt like my choices were largely irrelevant most of the time. There were only a few choices in the book that actually seemed to matter, otherwise it seemed like what I picked didn’t make any difference. I could choose to go through a portal, but I might get stepped on by a mammoth on the other side just as I was about to die on this side, so what difference does it make? I wanted the choices to always matter and I wanted to feel more empowered in my own story.

This is a fun book and well worth the read, especially as a fun summer book. It is also well-suited to a reader ready for longer chapter books. This is the best title I’ve read so far in what is a fun, effective and distinctive series. I definitely recommend this one. I might wish that it had been more robust, but considering the primary target audience and the fact that it’s among the first books to try choose-your-own-path stories in a comic format, I think that it did very well. Hopefully the series will lead to more experimentation along these lines!

- Publisher’s Description

- Dan Jolley’s Website

- Buy it from Amazon

Post a Comment