“‘Where there’s a will, there’s a way,’ she told herself. Those were her mother’s words that she repeated to herself when things got tough.”
In this unique combination of travel and mystery, Kelli Sue Landon transports readers with this captivating fictional tale that moves readers between the present, past, and future, to follow the central character on a journey of personal discovery. College student, Sam Harper, has little interest in courses outside her art major. But an English class research assignment sets her on a path to uncover her family ancestry. Since her mother’s tragic death, she has bonded with a father she never knew. Now Sam ventures to her mother’s hometown and visits the school where she attended kindergarten. Her investigation leads to an intriguing opening in a bathroom wall, and Sam suddenly finds herself smack in the middle of 1975. Here Sam meets her mother, as a child; then ultimately works to unravel the mystery behind a little girl’s death, her own grandmother’s murder, and a young teacher’s disappearance. In this strange time warp, Sam will take on a new identity and befriend another character entrapped within the past. Like Alice’s fall down the rabbit hole, or Dorothy’s adventures in Oz, Landon gives us a modern day character trying to find her way back home.
While the time travel element may seem a bit fantastical to some readers, the author weaves research into the storyline to explain the concept of portals, as openings in the space-time continuum. With the theory of time transport, Landon’s characters will also come to realize the consequences and possible danger in trying to change events that have already happened. While this book may seem written for a young adult audience, the work should appeal to all readers looking for an entertaining escape. In particular, those of the baby boomer generation should connect with the author’s skillful showcase of an era detailed with rotary phones, shag carpeting, bell bottoms, and console TVs. Through Stranded in Time, Landon presents a genuine thought-provoking read, with an uncommon storyline that evokes a creative blast from the past.