Wednesday, October 10, 2012

The Sun, the Moon, and Maybe the Trains - Blog Tour

Welcome to The Coffee Pot's first ever Blog Tour featuring the new novel by Rodney Jones: The Sun, the Moon, and Maybe the Trains.

What would it take to convince you that the woods you just left is a hundred and forty-four years distant from the one you entered?

Ten years have passed since the Civil War broke up John Bartley’s family. Living with his aunt and uncle in the tiny village of Greendale, Vermont, isn’t filled with excitement for a seventeen-year-old. Until John walks into the woods one day and stumbles into 2009… Fortunately, he chances upon the outspoken Tess McKinnon. To earn her trust, he must first convince her that he is neither a lunatic nor a liar. The proof he needs is buried at the end of a mountain road, where the ruins of Greendale lie just beneath a layer of dead leaves and moss.

What became of his home? Why is there no record of its existence?

Rodney Jones explores the concept of accidental time travel with his book, The Sun, the Moon, and Maybe the Trains. I found this novel different from other time travel novels because it focuses on John, a boy from  1875, coming to 2009, a not so distant past for the reader. Most time travel books seem to focus on the far future or the present, not two different pasts that readers are already enlightened about. 

John, the main character, is so easy to like, readers will be more than eager to finish his story. He's quite modest (which is highly entertaining!), overly polite, and simply sweet. I loved how Jones wrote the interactions of John and Tess (young lady from 2009). The dialogue and prose had me laughing out loud. 

Tess is an absolutely hilarious character. She's incredibly outspoken and the first to make an inappropriate joke, but also caring, kind, and helpful. Readers will enjoy her easy nature and comical personality. They will bond with her based on her familial situation and caring nature. 

The plot of Jones' novel was a bit elusive at first, the main question asking how John had traveled to 2009. This preceding the next inquiry: why? Though it seemed the main goal of the novel was to return him to 1875, it appears very quickly that isn't the case. This is where the novel really picked up and suddenly, Tess is in 1875 trying to warn John about what's going to happen in his small town. The ending came so quickly after that; I could not stop reading until the final word. 

Jones did an amazing job at creating this gripping novel while staying true to both 1875 and 2009. The Sun, the Moon, and Maybe the Trains is a seemingly accurate and realistic time travel novel that brings two pasts together. I highly recommend this book to all readers, especially young adult fiction lovers.

Rating: 4/5 cups

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