About the Book: Abby thinks tutoring an “an economically disadvantaged adolescent” as her college service project for the summer will be a snap.
Merrideth, her sullen 11-year-old student, thinks “No thanks, I don’t need a babysitter.”
John thinks Abby’s kidding when she tells him she can fast-forward and rewind life. Not her own, of course, but that of the girl who lived in Merrideth’s house 160 years ago.
It’s difficult for Abby to break through Merrideth’s emotional wall. The girl has been closed down ever since her parents’ divorce, especially since she was forced to move to the dilapidated old house that her mom inherited. But when her dad sends her a top-of-the-line computer to make up for it, Abby and Merrideth discover a crazy program that invites them to “Take a Virtual Tour” of houses around the world— including Merrideth’s. It’s a tour all right… a tour of the past when the house was new and a girl named Charlotte Miles lived there.
It’s like being there, only better. They know Charlotte’s thoughts and feelings. They experience her joys and frustrations as she courageously takes on a huge challenge, risking her life for others while her father is off fighting in the Civil War.
Watching from a distance, Abby and Merrideth gain a new perspective on their own lives, their faith strengthened as time and again they see God’s loving hand in Charlotte’s life
My Review: If you are looking for a clean young adult time-travel novel, this may be the book for you. Deborah Heal gives us the story of a college age girl who is tutoring a disadvantaged youth over the summer break, but their history lessons take on a whole new twist when they discover a program that lets them experience the past first hand.
The whole concept of seeing the past in person fascinates me. I have always wondered what it would have been like for the generations that came before me. I wanted to walk in their shoes, even if it was for a day. If I had a computer program like this, I would have spent my whole time following around the people in the program, so I can understand where the characters in this book are coming from. One thing I appreciate about Heal's book is, although it is self-published, it has been edited well. I could lose myself in the story because the writing was clean and without error. Thank you! I can't express how much that helped my enjoyment, as I've read other self-published works that were full of grammatical errors that caused me to put the book down without finishing, and I hate not finishing a book.
Time and Again is a great start to Heals series of young adult books, which continue the story like the next episode in a television drama. Don't forget to tune in for Unclaimed Legacy and Every Hill and Mountain.
My Recommendation: I recommend this book to young adults who want a very clean, conservative story full of imagination and adventure in a historical context.