23 July 2008

Gideon: The Cutpurse

Gideon the Cutpurse: Being the First Part of the Gideon Trilogy
by Linda Buckley-Archer (5/5 stars)
Reading level: Ages 9-12
Hardcover: 416 pages
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing (June 27, 2006)
Also published as The Time Travelers (US Title)

My husband stopped by the library the other day, to pick up some books that were on reserve for me and came home with this book. The librarians had just gotten it in and, knowing me, added it to my stack. They made an excellent choice!

Peter Schock's birthday treat has been canceled and instead he is forced to spend the day with strangers: Kate Dyer and her family to be exact. Wanting to show off her Dad's Van de Graaff generator, Kate persuades Peter to ride with them to the laboratory where Dr. Dyer works. The hilarity caused by the Van de Graaff generator startles Kate's dog, Molly, who jumps through the office window, gets shocked by Kate and runs down the hallway into another room that houses an experiment. Kate and Peter run after Molly, stumble through swirling light, and awake to find themselves in 1763.

It is their great fortune that their arrival, while witnessed by the fearsome and evil Tar Man, is also witnessed by Gideon Seymour. His account of their arrival helps them to piece together what has happened and he offers to help them find the Tar Man, who has the experimental machine they arrived in and that will hopefully take them back home.

The book is filled with the children's amazement and often disgust at the 18th century, which is quite fun. There are highway men, evil doers, tales of bravery and redemption and change of heart, and many well-written characters that are easy to care about.

As the Kate and Peter try to get home, Kate has unswerving faith in her father's ability to find them but Peter (who's last word's to his father were "I hate you") is filled with doubt and mixed feelings about his family. They, especially Peter, form a strong bong with Gideon and when he finds himself in grave peril, they are only too glad to help him.

This is a wonderful book, full of emotions and action and great story line. I wasn't too keen on the ending, though, feeling that it really didn't need to be made into such a cliff-hanger so that it could be a trilogy. But, then I read what book two is about and I have somewhat changed my mind. I'll hold off on that, perhaps hasty, judgment until I read this next installment.

I'm using this as the "G" Title for my A-Z Title Challenge, having read the British copy. Thank goodness, as the US title is totally different. Which makes me ask--WHY are the titles different some times? That simply drives me to distraction!! It is very trying to someone that reads British authors; I think there is a new book out, one that I can't find, only to discover that it's just titled differently. I hate it. I demand universal titles!



Blogger Debi said...

That drives me batty, too! In fact, I thought I'd never heard of this book, until I saw the U.S. title. Glad to hear you liked it...I've picked it up a couple times at the bookstore but always set down in favor of something else. Next time it may just come home with me. :)

6:03 PM  
Blogger Medbie said...

I've got the 2nd part in my bag right now; just got home from the library. I'll be able, soon, to let you know if it'll be worth reading--depending on how book two turns out!

9:27 PM  

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