CM . . .
. Volume XI Number 10 . . . . January 21, 2005
Well, Jeremy's at it again - time travelling by means of his grandfather's stamps and his grandfather's magnifying glass. Except for his first trip in this book, when he goes to join the Bluenose in its historic win of the International Fisherman's Cup in 1938, he doesn't meet up with his 12-year-old grandfather. Instead, he is using different stamps, given him by his step-mother with whom he is staying in Toronto while visiting his father for the first time since his parents broke up. These stamps, all boats, are issues from the Southern Hemisphere, and Jeremy finds himself journeying with Captain Cook in his voyage around Cape Horn and eventually on the trip that ended in Cook’s death. Once again, he bumps into another time traveller who---very peculiarly---seems to have exactly the same stamps as he, Jeremy, has, in spite of coming from over 50 years farther in the future.
It is a fascinating set-up. Who could this second "Harv" be, and why does he arrive on the boats at exactly the same spot that Jeremy does? Then there is the history of Captain Cook, his voyages, and finally his death at the hands of a suspicious tribe at Kealakokua Bar on the island of Hawaii. Tying everything together is Jeremy's own life, living with his mother, staying with his father and his new wife, worrying whether he will be embroiled in a nasty custody fight. There are many sides to this story, and Cora Taylor keeps them all perking along beautifully, moving from one to another with a wave of a magnifying glass. Jeremy is an impressively well developed character, increasing in depth and understanding as his situation changes. Douglas Adams managed to write a five-volume trilogy, but this book felt like the end of the series. Too bad; I've enjoyed all of Jeremy's adventures. If I'm wrong, I'll be happy to do some more stamp collecting with Jeremy.
Mary Thomas works in two elementary school libraries in Winnipeg, MB, and collects flower and bird stamps, as well as boats, and has a magnifying glass, but not one she inherited from her grandfather. As a device for time travel, well, it hasn't worked yet.
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Copyright © the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.