The Left Behinds are three kids whose parents are too busy to spend time with them. So, they spend their Christmas with their Social Studies teacher at their New Jersey school. But things take a sharp turn when Brandon starts messing with a MacBook. While Mel and Bev are trying to stop him, their iPhones start acting up. A whirl and a pop later, they find themselves next to a weird guy that looks oddly like George Washington. And that’s not all. General Washington has a gunshot wound to the chest. They look at their surroundings and become aware of a barn with hay but no horses and a raging snowstorm outside. What just happened???
The Left Behinds: Brandon, Mel, and Bev go on a wild journey in time travel in 1771. No. Let me rephrase that. Mel goes on a wild journey to save history, while Bev and Brandon are held hostage by the Hessians. Right when this twist began, I thought of the Disney song, “Small World,” because it indicates that we do, in fact, have a small world after all. In this setting, I believe we have a small past, present, and future world. While these worlds cannot combine, the morals and lessons transcend the time periods.
As the story continues, Mel takes advice from Dr. Benjamin Franklin and rides across the river from Pennsylvania to New Jersey with the Continental Army through harsh winter storms. I was reminded of another song. “Carry On My Wayward Son” by Kansas because of the struggle to find peace. The song portrays General Washington’s effort to not rest until the colonies are safe from the Hessians. The army gains victory; however, Mel, Brandon, and Bev find themselves tangled in yet another incident. What will the Left Behinds do next?
I would rate this book a 9/10 for its historically credible story line, but I would have preferred the language to be less sarcastic. This review is from an advance reader copy, so be sure to check it out January 15, 2015!
Maya S., 7th grade