Source: I received a copy to facilitate my review. The opinions expressed here are my own.
Carly is this super smart, nerdy girl who has been recommended to skip two grades. She decides to do everything in her power to get lower grades so that she can stay at that school with her best friends Patti. This is just one of the adventures Carly creates in this book.
When Carly's grandfather passes away he leaves her a mysterious letter and wooden box. The instructions tell her not to open the box until she reads the letter. She has always been her grandfather's favorite. She even had a secret knock that allowed her, and her alone, into his garage/workshop. She places the box under her bed where it stays until her best friend Patti finds it and pulls it out. She has been asked by her grandfather to wait until she is eighteen to open it. But, as Patti points out that is six years away. What her grandfather has left her is tucked away in a corner of his workshop. Carly can hardly believe he has left her a time machine. Carly tries it out while her friend is there in case something goes wrong. Then she talks her friend into going on a trip. But, what happens when Carly uses the machine to try to fix a family problem and changes things? The tension was taut enough I kept thinking, don't do that....what happens if...
Parts of this story reminded me of the movie "Back to the Future" where Marty has to be careful how he changes things because it could have dire consequences. This is Carly's situation. Will she make the problem she has at home better or worse? This is a must read book. It is full of humor and situations that my middle school students would definitely be able to identify. I will definitely recommend this book to them.