About The Book
TODD'S IN A STREET GANG, JAMIE WANTS TO BE. TO GET HIS FRIEND'S BACKING AND JOIN THE RIVERSIDE POSSE, HE TAKES HIM TO A SECRET LABORATORY. BUT DISASTER IS ABOUT TO STRIKE...
Who was the mysterious Hector Lightfoot? What was he up to when he disappeared, and who were the two ghosts once seen in his house? School friends Jamie and Todd are destined to find out when they go to London to spend a weekend with Jamie's Uncle Simon, who now lives in that very house. Soon after they arrive, Jamie has a frightening encounter with the two ghosts.
Hector, a veteran from the First Afghan War, joined a covert expedition to China, and afterwards worked on a secret Government project in an underground lab at theBritish Museum. He vanished suddenly, and was never heard from again.
Simon takes the boys to the lab, where they find a strange contraption – which, unknown to any of them, is a time-travel device. When the building is struck by lightning, the device is energized, and sends the boys back in time to the year 1862. There, surrounded by danger and exposed to disease, they are sucked into a life of crime in order to survive.
Only if they can find Hector will they have any chance of getting home again. But why has he gone into hiding? Who is the man after him and what does he want?
As the boys struggle to escape back to their own time, Jamie becomes convinced that the two ghosts he saw earlier are following them…
Now follow the route Jamie and Todd took with Swiper and Patch to Soho Square, where they burgled the house.
As I mention in the Trail, Seven Dials is one of my favourite places in London. I sometimes come and visit and stand there, imagining how it was in the mid 1800’s, when criminals dwelled in the neighbourhood, just like the Holton gang in Time Trap. who occupied a basement in Tower Court.
An Excerpt From Time Trap
Henry Holton, the young and powerfully built gang-leader, sat in a big leather chair, hands clasped together. Blond hair pulled back into a ponytail framed his stern face.
Jamie found himself directly under the light, conspicuous in the glare. Henry picked up a bottle of rum and leaned forward. He stared menacingly at them all.
The original layout of the Seven Dials area was designed by Thomas Neale in the early 1690s. The original plan had six roads converging, although this was later increased to seven. The sundial pillar was built with only six faces, with the dial itself acting as the seventh.
Following the successful development of the fashionable Covent Garden Piazza area nearby, Neale aimed for the Seven Dials site to be popular with well-off residents. This was not to be, however, and the area gradually deteriorated. At one stage, each of the seven apexes facing the column housed a pub. Today, only one remains: The Crown. By the nineteenth century, the area had become one of the most notorious slums in London, being part of the rookery of St. Giles.
I was a little worried that it would be too intense for my daughter (she sometimes frightens easily) but she loved it. It was interesting to follow along as Todd and Jamie encounter some hair-raising and sometimes threatening situations that only a determined will and strong fortitude could get them through. I love the way the characters are put into those situations where they must show courage and endurance and rely on each other to make it through. I think that serves as a good message for the young readers.
What is there not to love, Richard Smith is a fantastic story teller and Time Trap is an out of this world (or at least this place in time) adventure! Filled with twists and turns and mysterious moments, it encompasses everything I could hope for. It is well written with exceptional character development. 5 stars all the way!
"Very exciting book; keeps you interested from the start right the way through. You can tell a lot of research has gone into the writing of this book because all the roads, pubs, churches etc in the adventure are real and in line with accurate history. Fantastic bonus is the London Walk you are invited to take all educational."
"Time Trap came recommended from a review site and I thought my son would enjoy it. As it was I read it first and thoroughly enjoyed it. It has a really engrossing storyline, strong characters and plenty of intrigue."
"A hugely enjoyable time romp, Time Trap is the debut novel from author Richard Smith and it really is a little different. Not only a perfect mix of fantasy, intriguing technology and action to keep even the most demanding of young readers entertained, it has more than its share of mystery to boot."
"An undeniably fun and engaging read, Time Trap will certainly pique your interest and leave its readers wanting more. Raising high expectations of future releases from author Richard Smith, it is recommended without reservation!"
"My 10 year old, well-read son has been reading Time Trap solidly over the last few days and loves it."
"Smith it seems has certainly succeeded in weaving a wonderful tale."