Time Slipping Middle Grade!

The concept of time travel or time slipping has always fascinated me, ever since I read the book, Magic Elizabeth when I was in fourth grade. I also read Madeline L’Engle’s A Wrinkle in Time series, of course, with interstellar time travel.

Magic Elizabeth

I often lament that science hasn’t given us time-wrinkling, or time-folding yet, so I can zip across the country for a writer’s conference or a book signing for an author friend, or meet the other writers and authors I correspond with through Facebook and Twitter. I mean, really, time travel inventors–get with the program!

But the great thing is that we can time-slip through books – which I always talk about when doing author visits at schools. Books and stories can take us ANYWHERE, ANYTIME! That’s the real magic of reading!


Here are a few titles I particularly like, including two time travel/time slipping MG’s that I wrote. Because of course I would write one of these stories when I love them so much.

AND! Here’ s a link to a children’s book blog that features Time-Travel Tuesday posts. The blogger has delineated the titles by time period and included author names and dates of publication. http://charlotteslibrary.blogspot.com/p/time-travel-books.html

The Last Snake Runner1

The Last Snake Runner by Kimberley Griffiths Little (2001) MG

Wild Robert, by Diana Wynne Jones (1989) MG

Three Lives to Live, by Anne Lindberg (1992) MG

Archer’s Quest, by Linda Sue Park (2006) MG

Crashing the Party, by Perdita Finn (2007)

Frozen in Time, by Ali Sparks (2009) MG

*The Hotel Under the Sand, by Kage Baker (2009) MG


The Prince of Fenway Park, by Julianna Baggott (2009) MG

Benjamin Franklinstein Lives! by Matthew McElligott and Larrry Tuxbury (2010) MG

The Witchy Worries of Abbie Adams, by Rhonda Hayter (2010) MG

The Witchy Worries of Abbie Adams

The Dead Gentleman, by Matthew Cody (2011) MG

Counterclockwise, by Jason Cockcroft (2009) MG

11 Birthdays, by Wendy Mass (2009) MG



Justin Thyme, by Panema Oxridge (2011) MG

A Year Without Autumn, by Liz Kessler (2011) MGA year without autumn

Odessa Again, by Dana Reinhardt (2013) MG





The Time of the Fireflies by Kimberley Griffiths Little (2014) MG

Time of the Fireflies_Cover

The Glass Sentence, by S.E. Grove (2014) MG







If you *also* love Young Adult novels this list has many terrific titles as well:


What are your favorite time-slipping books? Please tell us in the comments!



Kimberley Griffiths Little has published 10 award-winning novels with Knopf, Scholastic, and Harpercollins. Her most recent MG, The Time of the Fireflies, was named a Bank Street College Best Books of 2015, a Whitney Award Finalist, a Letters of Mormon Arts Award Finalist, and was recently chosen for the William Allan White Kansas State Children’s Choice List for 2016-2017. Find Kimberley on Facebook and Twitter @KimberleyGLittl

More Podcasts for Middle Grade Fans!

In September, From the Mixed-Up Files’ own Kate Manning wrote a great post on Podcasts with Middle Grade Authors and I started loading my phone with fabulous content just the right length to tackle on a commute, a Mom Taxi run, or while waiting for an appointment.

A photo of headphones and an iPad.Since the fall, the number of bookish podcasts seems to have exploded. So here’s an updated list of podcasts on middle grade books to help our avid fans learn about new books:

The Yarn by Travis Jonker and Colby Sharp – The Yarn takes listeners behind the scenes of children’s literature, and lets them look at all the threads that must be weaved together to create a book.

The Narrative Breakdown by Cheryl Klein and James Monohan – Each episode, they analyze popular novels, movies, Broadway shows, television shows, short stories, and more. Featuring various expert guests as well as material from Cheryl Klein’s book ‘Second Sight’ and James’ app ‘The Storyometer.’

Children’s Books – The Guardian. Leading children’s authors discuss their work with young readers and the Guardian literary team.

HarperCollins Children’s – Now HarperCollins Children’s has its own podcast on children’s books as well.

SCBWI Conversations – Now the Society for Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators has another great reason to join–a great series of podcasts interviewing leaders in the children’s book field.

Kids’ Book Corner – Hear an indie bookseller talk about her favorite children’s titles on her blog.

Book Club for Kids – One of our MUF readers let us know about this podcast, which lets you hear what kids think about their favorite middle grade books!

What are your favorite podcasts? Let us know in the comments!



The Drake Equation “Alien Invasion” Giveaway Winner!

I promised (ahem – sprung on) Bart that I would indulge in some fun for this giveaway. As I said in my interview with him about The Drake Equation, we usually use Rafflecopter to choose a winner for giveaways, but I wanted to try something a little goofy.


Hence the “Alien Invasion” giveaway:

Aliens are landing in my backyard. The alien (a commenter on this post) whose name lands closest to the bird (a black swift, of course…) is the winner.

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First, we have to check the wind direction and see how things fly around here. Not so great. They all blew back toward the deck and some even landed in the bushes.

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Add some weight to the aliens so they are not affected by the wind so much.

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Then we have to do a test drop. Or three. And move the target closer…

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Now, the real thing!

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And the winner of the Drake Equation Giveaway is… Pragmatic Mom!  You’ll be getting an email from us soon. Thanks so much to everyone who stopped by to comment. I really think you and your kiddos will enjoy Bart’s book. 2016-05-13 17.30.54