With an April 5th release date from Chronicle Kids, Leila Sales' Once Was a Time is almost in stores. This is a time travel novel geared towards the 10 to 13 year old. I found it completely engaging and hard to put down.
Lottie Bromley's dad is a scientist with conviction that time travel exists. He just cannot prove his theory. Lottie's best friend Kitty is fascinated by the idea and spends a lot of time at their house listening to his talks about time travel. It's his research that lands everyone in trouble, as Kitty and Lottie are kidnapped and the kidnappers want him to prove time travel exists. When a wormhole appears in her holding room, Lottie finds herself traveling to a new time and place, but a time where there is no Kitty. She knows she left Kitty in danger and also knows she must do the unthinkable and find a way back.
One of the things I loved most with Once Was a Time is that Lottie and Kitty were in WWII England, and Lottie finds herself alone in modern day Wisconsin. There's so much that Lottie has missed, and she needs to learn it all - computers, internet, fashions, and even culture. I love how that became a large part of the story and also gave her the tools she needed to adjust. It's also going to give U.S.-based readers a look into language differences between the U.S. (sneakers) and England (plimsolls.)
This is not a difficult read for an adult, which means it will be a little harder for the intended age, but not extremely difficult. It's one I would have happily read and discussed with my own children.