Recommended for ages 10-14
Mel and his schoolmates, Brandon and Bev, are the Left-Behinds: children of wealthy and/or famous parents who make little time for them, they’re shipped off to boarding school and spend the holidays there. On a holiday school trip, the three find themselves transported through time, ending up in Colonial America – just in time to save the life of one General George Washington right before the historic crossing of the Delaware. Armed with just his iPhone, Mel must figure out how to save his friends, save George Washington, and save America! Oh, and he’s on, like, 8 percent battery.
The story is the next step for fans of Jon Sciezska’s Time Warp Trio series, who are on a higher reading level and ready for a more challenging novel. The book looks like it’s the first in a promising new series, with likable characters, a rogue iPhone app, Benjamin Franklin (who makes anything in which he appears even better) and a mysterious nemesis. There’s solid history here: the author did his research and his love for American history is clear here. This would be a great book to have students read alongside a unit on American history.
The author’s website offers information about the book, a bio on the author, and transcripts of the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights, along with a section on where to catch historical re-enactments. For now, there’s only the Washington Historic Crossing available; I hope we’ll get some more as the author writes more!
The Left Behinds and the iPhone That Saved George Washington releases next week, on January 5th.