The Book of Time
  • The Book of Time
  • The Book of Time

The Book of Time

4.2 17
by Guillaume Prevost

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The paperback edition of the Children's Book List pick, praised as an "older relative of the Magic Tree House books" by Publishers Weekly.

A statue; a coin; an old book. They look as dusty as everything else in the Faulkner Antiquarian Bookstore, where 14-year-old Sam Faulkner seeks his father, who's been missing for days. But when Sam slips the coin into the

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The paperback edition of the Children's Book List pick, praised as an "older relative of the Magic Tree House books" by Publishers Weekly.

A statue; a coin; an old book. They look as dusty as everything else in the Faulkner Antiquarian Bookstore, where 14-year-old Sam Faulkner seeks his father, who's been missing for days. But when Sam slips the coin into the statue, he's swept back in time -- to Scotland in 800 A.D. -- where he must find both the statue and another coin in order to return to the present. It's the first step in an adventure that will take him to ancient Egypt, World War I, even Dracula's castle -- and a mystery that will end only when Sam saves his father, or loses him in time . . .

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

This time-travel adventure by a French author reads like a book-long prelude to a much longer story, and it does, in fact, turn out to be a series opener. Fourteen-year-old Sam lives with his grandparents; since the death of his mother three years earlier, his incurably eccentric father, the owner of an antique bookstore, has gotten stranger and stranger. Prone to disappearing, he has been missing for 10 days, and Sam decides to investigate. While searching through the bookstore's basement, he finds a "totem or a voodoo object, the kind of thing you see in horror films, where a terrible curse will strike whomever discovers it" along with a "dirty coin" engraved with strange lines and symbols. Fitting the coin into the object, Sam wakes up in the era of the Vikings, just in time to save a monastery's illuminated manuscript from a raid. Subsequent adventures take him to WWI France, ancient Egypt, medieval Bruges-and give him just enough clues to point to his father's whereabouts, as a prisoner of Vlad the Impaler. Prévost sets up the various locations with lightning efficiency as Sam hurtles through one period after another; readers cannot afford to blink. This is a souped-up, older relative of the Magic Tree House books; kids who liked that brand of history and adventure but have outgrown the format will welcome the more sophisticated presentation here. Ages 9-12. (Sept.)

Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
Fourteen-year-old Sam Faulkner is living with his grandparents because his father, rare book dealer Allan Faulkner, has gone missing again. The police are no help, and Sam's pushy Aunt Evelyn and her controlling boyfriend Rudolph are ready to write off Sam and his father. Sam undertakes his own investigation and finds a strange stone statue in the basement of his father's store. Placing a coin in a declivity on the statue sends Sam back in time to the isle of Iona, where he helps monks save their treasures from Vikings before finding another coin. He journeys on to World War I France and then to Ancient Egypt, where the priest Ahmosis gives him clues to the statue's origins and workings. Back in the present, Sam and his twelve-year-old cousin Lily work out Allan's location in time and the first steps to saving him before the teaser ending of this first volume of a trilogy. Prevost is an author of adult thrillers in France. His first for a younger audience is a make-up-the-rules-as-you-go-along fantasy; Sam's clothes change when he travels because they are made of synthetic fabrics, but questionably Lily's cell phone travels without a problem. The adventure never ignites because the volume is setup for a longer story. The wrestling subplot in the present feels tacked on, and there is no character development of which to speak. Whether problems in translation or with the original, the teen characters often speak with a stilted formality and there are many awkward turns of phrase. Wait for an omnibus edition of all three novels or pass entirely on this flat, French fantasy. Reviewer: Timothy Capehart
School Library Journal

Gr 5-8
Sam Faulkner knows that it's not unusual for his father to disappear, but he's never been gone for ten days before. Sam searches his father's bookstore and discovers a secret room containing a mysterious book, a statue, and a coin. The boy places the coin in the center of the statue and is transported back in time to Scotland during the Viking invasion. He doesn't find his father, but he does help save the day. The next turn of the coin transports Sam to a World War I battlefield where he intervenes at a crucial moment. Another turn takes Sam to a tomb where he assists an ancient Egyptian priest. And then it's on to Renaissance Belgium. This story by Guillaume Prevost, translated by William Radarmor (Arthur A. Levine Books, 2007) just doesn't work. The pace is too rapid and character development is non-existent. Listeners have little reason to care about Sam or his father. Holter Graham's narration seems exaggerated to compensate for a thin plot and mundane language. Youngsters will feel cheated by the ending that doesn't answer any of the book's questions. A better choice for time-travel stories is Dan Gutman's baseball card adventures or Susan Cooper's King of Shadows (Margaret K. McElderry, 1999).
—Tricia MelgaardCopyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

Kirkus Reviews
Sam Faulkner's mother is dead, his father's been missing for two weeks, he's being threatened by a bully at school and he's just turned 14. Unhappy at his grandparents' home, having little interest in school, he turns back to his old house, hoping for some clue to his father's disappearance. What he finds is a way to travel through time. He hops from time period to time period, country to country, convinced he's following in his father's footsteps, but never finding him. Wrenched back into his own time, confiding his adventures only to his cousin Lily, he discovers that his body is beginning to change as well. Written in short, almost jerky vignettes, there is not a lot of depth to this story. That may well be in the future, however, because it is clearly just the beginning. This volume establishes characters and relationships without really fleshing them out. That must come with successive volumes, which are sure to follow. Lily has found evidence of where Sam's father is-being held prisoner in Vlad Tepes's (aka Dracula's) castle. Finding how to get there, rescue his father and bring them both home safely is now the mission. A light read, with glimpses into other times and places, with the promise of better to come. (Fantasy. 10-14)

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Product Details

Scholastic, Inc.
Publication date:
The Book Of Time Series
Edition description:
Product dimensions:
5.34(w) x 7.60(h) x 0.55(d)
Age Range:
8 - 12 Years

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Book of Time 4.2 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 17 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This was a fantastic book I have been looking for the sequeal but am unable to find it anywhere.....:( but this wqas a terrific book and I would encourage others to read it also!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
  Sam’s Adventure I thought that the book would be a little more mysterious it was but they are sometimes talking about the same thing for a couple of pages. Its about a boy named sam, he’s 11 years old and he is going to try to find  his dad but he comes across an antique book. He was going to an adventure to go to World War I and ancient egypt just to see if he can find his dad. Also sam is also trying to find people that might have known him and trying to see if they know where his dad is.I thought that the book was okay because of the mysteries that it has at the end and the things that he does to try and save his father. The book was great and its good for ages 8 and up. I would rate this book at a four because of the detalles it has and all the mystery.  But its a mystery is Sam could find his father. 
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The entire trilogy is a great set to read, Prevost leaves you hanging the entire trilogy leading up to the third book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The book of time By: Guillaume prevost Sam Faulkner is the main character, he is 11 years old, and he lives with his Grandmother. His grandmother seventy-eight years old. An older kid, who is about 12 years old, is bulling Sam. Sam is on a gymnastic team. Sam's dad owns a bookstore, Sam goes to see his dad at work, and that's when he find out his dad is missing. Throughout this whole book Sam is trying to find his dad. Sam enters into time When he hits on this wall because his is angry because he cant find his dad and zip there He goes into time travel. Sam travels to many different places, like Spain and the Civil War, the main place is Egypt and while he does this he is changing our future. Sam's life Is put in many crises in this part of the story. Sam is lucky he is still alive. The main setting in this book is Egypt, but he travels all over the place. The theme is Sam is trying to save his dad when he is in time but he gets teleported Home then he finds out his dad is in time. So he goes back to save him. Sam is finding clues form his dad and that's how he finds him then he takes him back to present time. I really like this book because he is in various places and time like the war and Egypt And all over the world. I really like Egypt because all of the history that happened there. All because our class is studying Egypt so I know a lot about it. I connected to this book; I think it would be cool to travel through time. I also connected to this book some because it had some times when I was little that I wondered were my dad was. Related books are: Gate of day (the book of time 2): by Guillaume Prevost The circle of gold (the book of time 3): by Guillaume Prevost
writingirl_15 More than 1 year ago
The Book of Time's idea about time-travel is very orginal and interesting but I felt like the writing fell short of good. There were way too many exclamation marks, and to be honest, the main character seemed kind of wimpy. I stopped reading the book after a while, and I didn't finish it. Overall, it really wasn't that great of a book-but for younger kids it might be good. I gave three stars because of the original plot, original plots are not easy to find now-a-days.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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TeensReadToo More than 1 year ago
This isn't the first time Sam's dad has disappeared. According to Sam's grandparents, Allan Faulkner was always an odd kid, but he pretty much settled down when he married Sam's mom. In the three years since Sam's mom died, Allan seems to have reverted back to his own little world. One that sometimes involves him disappearing for days at a time. Never for ten days in a row though, and he's NEVER forgotten Sam's birthday. Sam's pretty sure there's more going on then an unexpected business trip.

Having escaped a judo tournament due to cancellation, and a beating from his much larger archenemy by feminine intervention, Sam is off to do some investigating. While Sam has lived with his grandparents, and cousin Lily, since the beginning of the year, Allan is still living in the house/bookstore he runs. That seems like the best place for Sam to start looking for clues.

Sam finds his way to the basement of the old house. There he finds a hidden room, a strange book, an old coin of some kind, and a strange-shaped stone that seems to be making noise. Sam feels almost drawn to the stone, and when he touches it... Let's just say the adventures truly begin.

Sam's dad seems to have found a way to travel through time! And now time has sucked Sam in, too. Sam is beginning to suspect that his dad is caught somewhere in the past. With the help of this crazy stone and some other coins, Sam just might be able to rescue him. That is, if he can figure out how to get out of the random places he keeps getting sent to, and find a way to wherever his dad went. Plus, he'll have to find a way to keep his grandparents from worrying about his disappearances, and keep Lily's nosy mom and her boyfriend out of his way. Oh yeah, and he still has make it through the judo tournament and possibly through the bully who wants to smash his face in.

I love time travel books, and this story does not disappoint. For a book that's not too thick, and reads very quickly, there's a whole lot packed in to it! And it's so much more than just a time travel story. These characters seem like real people, with normal problems. It's a recognizable family that's trying to hold itself together, in spite of very strange occurrences.

Sam has such great adventures, both in the past and in the present. I wish I could do all of it, except I'm not sure I could think as fast as he does at times!

The book ended much sooner than I wanted it to. I wanted to keep reading more and more about Sam, and his family, and his travels. Maybe I can find a time traveling stone to the future, so I can read all of the books that I hope come next! Even if I have to wait, I look forward to as many of these as I can get.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I've been looking for the sequel to this book for months. I loved this book. It was by far the most unique thing I've read in a long time. I finally came across a website that says the next book, Gate of Days, will be released October 1st 2008. Happy early birthday to me :)
Guest More than 1 year ago
This was a great book, but that may be because I like all books that involve time travel. I like the characters, and since they are my age, I can relate to some things (in PRESENT TIME mind you). I also like history, so it was cool that he visits all those places in his travels.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book sucked. It had no plot. It kept going and going, it was super boring. I stoped reading after the first 50 pages.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is about a boy named Sam who is just an ordinary kid until his dad disappears, so Sam goes to look for clues of his dad¿s disappearance, he finds a hidden door in the basement with a huge rock that has ancient carving and a hole in the middle. So Sam decides to look around the rock and he finds a coin with a hole in the middle that seems to fit. So he puts it in and Bam instant time travel. If you like adventure, judo, time travel, and history this book is terrific for you.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I loved it, finished it after the first day! I recommend it to all those people who are down to earth, but still dreaming-READ IT!!!!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book was really great.It was very cool how he time traveled
Guest More than 1 year ago
The book of time The book that I am reading there are many conflicts. Major conflict in this book is the boy can¿t find his dad. Another conflict is that he looks through the middle of a coin, which has a hole in it, and he ends up in a place he has never seen. He thinks this is the place where his dad has gone, but how did he get there. He saw this building like thing but when he saw person he couldn¿t understand them so he thought he must not be close to home. He then found out that he traveled back in time when he was in a cave and found the coin and looked through it. When he found out that he was somewhere else he saw a wounded soldier, but it wasn¿t a soldier he had seen before. When he was asked to go and get someone to help him, the other soldiers didn¿t believe him. This is when he thought he was going to find his dad. He had remembered a letter his dad saw about the army to go in the army that is why he traveled back in time. That is all I can tell you it is your choice to see if his dad is there or if he is dead.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I got an Advanced Reader's Copy through my writing group a few months back and finally got to read it this week. The overall story idea and writing is very good. I have a few problems with the author's 'rules' for time traveling (a cell phone that travels with Sam and though it doesn't work for making calls, still keeps the current 'real world' time which moves at a different pace than the time Sam is in) it is a good book for middle grade kids who may not question it. The characters are well thought out and presented. There are many references to current trends (Harry Potter, Tony Hawk, etc) which a young reader today will appreciate but might make the book sound too dated a few years from now. My only real 'complaint' about the book is the ending. It is a doozie of a cliff-hanger... obviously there will be at least one more book on the way. The story was not wrapped up well enough for the end of a novel. It feels more like I was forced to stop reading in the middle of a longer book. Even with my dislike of the ending, it is a very good book and I look forward to reading the next one to see what happens. I recommend this book for boys and girls ages 9 to 12, or anyone (like me!) who enjoys middle grade adventure and fantasy stories.