Seven Stories Up will be released at the end of January and is a fun little read. Annie, our main character, is visiting her Grandmother who is critically ill. Annie does not remember much of her Grandmother and she is a bit frightened by this elderly person’s anger both at her and her mother.
A bit frightened, tired and in a strange closed up old hotel Annie falls into a deep sleep and into another time period. Here she discovers her Grandmother when she was a young girl and begins to unravel the mystery that surrounds her current day Grandmother.
This is a great read for 3rd through 6th graders. It moves quickly and you get a glimpse into life in Baltimore around 1937. There are a few inconsistencies that were confusing but did not harm the story line. These changes from the beginning of the story to the end may relate to the time travel idea and changes that might happen in the world when someone travels back in time.
The thought of what happens when someone from the future makes a change to the past-introducing new words, changing the emotions of a person or family- is a huge question. Does it indeed change the future? This confusion in the story is a place for interesting discussion with students.
As a teacher this book could work well in a writing workshop about families, what makes for friendships and writing realistic fiction that transitions into magic. My students make big leaps when adding magic to their stories. This book makes little stepped that allows you to almost believe in the magic of time travel. This would be a great model for how to make those additions to a story.
To learn more about Laurel Snyder and her books check out her web site.