Gr 5-8-Lisa Maddock, 16, is sailing from Miami to Saint Thomas when her sloop is rammed by a raft. Surviving two days on the raft, she sights an island and swims ashore. Found by 10-year-old Amelia, she is taken to Dr. Preston Freemont, who has perfected time travel. Able to snatch famous people from the past without disturbing history, he wants to build a new world in which pollution, crime, etc. have been eliminated. (Amelia is a young Amelia Earhart). Freemont, disturbed that Lisa was able to see and land on his invisible island, tries to keep her there; she negotiates for Amelia's and her own release by proposing a boat race. Portrayed as more idealistic than evil, Dr. Freemont is determined to win and uses trickery to do so, but the teen prevails, and she and Amelia set off back to the ``real'' world together. Sobol has combined an intriguing idea with a straightforward, if slightly hokey plot; easy vocabulary; and uncomplicated characters who will appeal to young readers.-Jo-Anne Weinberg, Greenburgh Public Library, NY
While sailing solo just east of the Bahamas, 16-year-old Lisa Maddock is thrown overboard. She grabs a log raft and floats safely to a nearby island, where she is surprised to find many of the world's most gifted statesmen and inventors--including Abe Lincoln, Thomas Edison, and a 10-year-old Amelia Earhart. This talent pool has been assembled by Dr. Freemont, an evil scientist determined to create his own "New Earth" in some far off galaxy. Lisa's choices are limited--either accompany the mad doctor to his new world or be left behind in the Atlantic as shark bait--unless she can somehow outwit him and rescue the young Amelia. Mystery writer Sobol is best know for his Encyclopedia Brown tales; this time fantasy has its good points, although the story is not without flaws. Freemont's technique for gathering people and things from other time periods is well thought out, but Lisa's long-winded debate with the doctor about the merits of his scheme seems less believable. An acceptable choice for larger collections where fantasy is popular.