Friday, July 01, 2011

Bill Myers's TJ and the Time Stumblers ~New Kid Catastrophe~ Reviewed

By Bill Myers
Published by Tyndale
ISBN# 978-1-4143-3453-0
182 Pages

Back Cover:

This six-book series centers around two 23rd century goofballs, Tuna and Herby, who travel back in time to study TJ Finkelstein for their history project. TJ will someday become a great leader who demonstrates honesty, integrity, thoughtfulness, self-sacrifice, respect for others—all traits she hones and grasps through her adventures in this series. Unfortunately, Tuna and Herby get stuck in TJ’s time (modern day), so she has to deal with their schemes while juggling the normal issues of a seventh grader who has moved to a new city, is trying to fit in, and is coping with her mother’s death and her family’s new life.

In New Kid Catastrophes, TJ accidentally makes an enemy of Hesper Breakahart, the superstar who attends their school. And Tuna and Herby’s attempts to help just lead to one disaster after another. In the end, TJ is still very unpopular, but she learns the value of looking past appearances and gains a few friends—and the attention of the most popular boy in school.


I’m a huge Bill Myers fan. When an opportunity came about to receive a review copy of his new children’s series I quickly signed up. My two boys and I have benefited from reading other children’s series by this author and I couldn’t wait to read this new series. We loved the action packed, funny adventures in theses book with great messages I appreciated. The quality of his new series is no different!

TJ Finkelstein’s family has moved from a small town in Missouri to Malibu, California, madness! TJ sees that Malibu Jr. High has some of the richest, snobbiest kids ever. She was the new kid on the block and in the school! Yikes!

One amazing thing was she lived next to the dreamiest boy, Chad Steel. Just so happens his girlfriend is Hesper Breakahart, T.V. Super star, miss popular! He’d never notice TJ or would he after the alien’s arrive?

TJ’s life was different but not impossible until two male aliens from the 23rd century traveled back in time to break down near her house. TJ Finkelstein is stuck with these two male aliens until they fixed their ship and could leave. They couldn’t leave fast enough for TJ, she couldn’t keep this secret from everyone including her immediate family. Living was traumatic enough without two alien guys following her around all day using their cloaking devices so only TJ could see them. Lucky her!

This is book one in the series. I loved it! This series is geared for kids 8-12 and reminded me of two movies, Star Trek and the three stooges mixed together. This book had the three stooges slap-stick well timed humor along with Star Trek the next generation space toys and wild adventures. It took me away from the cares of this world and made me laugh and I could see the principles Bill Myers is trying to have the youth catch! Kids will be so caught up in the story drama and believable characters they won’t realize they are learning valuable character building morals along the way. It also challenges the reader to take a look at their lives and the choices they are making! It can be ok to do the right thing! I highly recommend this new series to anyone who wants to have fun and learn a thing or two along the way.

Reviewed by: Nora St.Laurent
The Book Club Network
Finding Hope Through Fiction

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