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Month in review

Reviews
The Alcatraz Escape by Jennifer Chambliss Bertman
Better Off Read by Nora Page
Braced by Alyson Gerber
The Chosen Ones by Scarlett Thomas
Crossing the Tracks by Barbara Stuber
The Epic Fail of Arturo Zamora by Pablo Cartaya
Fleep by Jason Shiga
The House on East 88th Street by Bernard Waber
I'll Save You Bobo! by Eileen Rosenthal
A Just Clause by Lorna Barrett
Karma Khullar's Mustache by Kristi Wientge
Labyrinth Lost by Zoraida Córdova
Love & War by Melissa de la Cruz
Malaika’s Winter Carnival by Nadia L. Hohn and Irene Luxbacher (illustrator) Merman in My Tub, Volume 2 by Itokichi
The Minotaur Takes His Own Sweet Time by Steven Sherrill
Murder Past Due by Miranda James
Nurse, Soldier, Spy by Marissa Moss and John Hendrix
The Outlaw Varjak Paw by S.F. Said
Ragtag by Karl Wolf-Morgenländer
The Road is Yours Reginald M. Cleveland Rooster Joe and the Bully by Xavier Garza
Runaways, Volume 1: Find Your Way Home by Rainbow Rowell
Ship It by Britta Lundin
Square by Mac Barnett and Jon Klassen
Surprise Me by Sophie Kinsella
Time Ghost by Welwyn Wilton Katz
Wandering Son: Volume 3 by Takako Shimura
White Night by Jim Butcher
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum: rereading for the American road narrative

Miscellaneous
Canadian Book Challenge: 2018-2019
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (June 04)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (June 11)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (June 18)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (June 25)
May 2018 Sources
May 2018 Summary
On counting books: stop policing other people's reading
Thirty-one years of tracking my reading

Road Essays
Ignoring the eight percent
There are 216 road narrative stories (that I'm interested in)
Traveling between utopia and uhoria: an introduction to the use of space and time in Oz and Night Vale
Who is Dorothy?

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5 stars: Completely enjoyable or compelling
4 stars: Good but flawed
3 stars: Average
2 stars: OK
1 star: Did not finish


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Time Ghost: 06/19/18

Time Ghost

Time Ghost by Welwyn Wilton Katz is set in the near future and the recent past, although at the time it was written, the "past" would have been the present. Sara and her brother Karl are reluctantly going with their grandmother on a research and protest trip to the North Pole.

The ice has mostly melted. The seas have risen. The atmosphere is heavily polluted and most cities are now living under domes. Sara and her family live in the Ottawa dome.

The trip happens to coincide with Sara's birthday. She's given a gift of a pendant that has a miniature loon inside. In this near future the loons have disappeared and Canadian money reflects its disappearance by removing the loon from the one dollar coins.

Sara having spent her hole life effectively in doors is a bit agoraphobic. She's also possibly air sick from the flying vehicle her grandmother pilots. Regardless, she's not in any sort of mood to accept a sentimental gift from her grandmother.

In the background of all of this is a time experiment that two of the grandmother's passengers are doing. The idea goes like this: at the north pole (the actual axis of rotation, not magnetic north which is over PEI) the time zones all converge into a no-time point. What happens at that point? Could it possibly be a portal for time travel?

Well, given the title, the answer for this book is yes. But time travel isn't done by clocks or other time devices. It's a personal experience and it happens on what Edward Einhorn calls "personal time" in Paradox in Oz. The object of connection for Sara and her grandmother and their separate timelines is the pendant.

The second and third parts of the book are set in the past where Sara and the others who were present at her polar temper tantrum are now stuck in the bodies of people from the grandmother's past. All except for Sara, who is floating at the side of a girl as a "time ghost."

Through this leap into the past Sara learns about her grandmother, gets a glimpse of what the wilderness used to be like. She also gets to hear and see the loon that her grandmother is always talking about.

In terms of tone, the book waffles between melodrama and eerie predictions of environmental collapse at the hands of big business. Although we might not end up with domed cities by 2030, we are on a path where bird migrations and biomes are moving north as the world warms.

Three stars

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