The Time Museum, by Matthew Loux (First Second, February 2017), is a real treat for fans of time travel and fun graphic novels, and especially for those of us who are fans of both!
Delia is a science minded kid, and one day her exploration of the flora and fauna around her home leads her to the discovery of her lifetime--the Earth Time Museum! It's the museum of Earth's history, both cultural and natural, representing our planet to interstellar visitors. And its collections are developed through time travel! Delia's offered the chance to apply for a summer internship at the museum, and can't think of anything she'd rather do than work there...but a group of other kids, boys and girls from both the past and the future, are also contending for the position.
The kids are tested by being sent on missions of discovery back in time, where they are also asked to repair glitches in the continuum of time--removing things out of place. It's not the competition with each other that's the complicated part, or even coping with unfamiliar time periods, it's learning to work together that's the real test. And it's a test that leads to a challenge that no-one expected--confronting a mysterious time traveler who seems up to no good and repairing a rip in time itself.
It's lots of fun--the kids are an interesting bunch, and seeing them learn to get along and trust each other, while competing with each other at the same time, was most interesting. As were their journey's back in time, visiting dinosaurs, the library of Alexandria, and London in the year 3029! Laugh-out-loud moments are combined with an exiting story that begs for re-reading.
For some of us, additional re-reading might be helpful in figuring out just what is going on with the bad guy, whose degree of badness remains unclear to me...and it's possible that kids who like thinks clear cut and easy to follow will be not as pleased as kids who go with the flow. It is also possible that it all makes perfect sense on first reading, as I myself am a tad challenged by graphic novels, because I read the words too quickly to absorb the information in the pictures....
There's a bit of diversity--Delia's room-mate and new friend/competitor is from a future Japan, and a woman who's one of the museum executives who trains the kids looks African-American. I wish there'd been a bit more diversity in body type--the girls are all supper skinny, which is a stylist choice I found a bit off putting. Here's a picture of the group of them, with Delia on the far left:
But in any event, it's great to see a girl scientist as the main hero of the adventure! Delia's a great role-model for girls interested in history, both the natural and the less natural kind.....I loved seeing her self-confidence in her identity flower. And I absolutely adored the museum and want to intern there myself.
disclaimer: review copy received from the publisher