Time Travelling Dinos: The Pilot by Chris Sykes
Genre: Young Adult/Middle Grade, Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Historical, Contemporary, Action/Adventure
Length: Full Length (269 pages)
Age Recommendation: 8+
Rating: 4 Stars
Reviewed by Astilbe
What if time travel has already been invented, but the technology for travelling through time is lost somewhere in the past – way, way back in the past? What then? What would a dinosaur really need with a time machine, anyway?
In ancient times, dinosaurs ruled the world. But they disappeared, leaving only bones to tell their stories. Bones will say a lot about how their former owners lived – they can be quite gossipy under the right circumstances – but there are some things that they will never let slip. Some secrets, like how one slightly overweight dinosaur might cause the end of the world, are not for bones to tell. That job is mine. So, settle down and read on. But be warned: time travel is the most dangerous way to travel. Not only can you be ripped apart by the flowing motion of time itself but you can destroy the whole universe if you do not know what you are doing. And no one really does. Strange things can happen.
They say curiosity killed the cat. What would it do to a friendly dinosaur?
One of the things I enjoy the most about Mr. Sykes writing style is his playful sense of humor. I was excited to read his newest work due to how much I’ve enjoyed his stuff in the past. This story was tailored specifically for elementary students, but there is also plenty of material here that adults can get a chuckle out of as well. I was thoroughly amused by all of the funny stuff that happened as Larry and Tim adjusted to what happened to them.
There were a few minor pacing issues. Normally I’d expect something written for this age group to be shorter and have a plot that moves a little faster than what this author has written. The pacing problems weren’t serious enough to keep me from enjoying Larry and Tim’s adventures, but had they not occurred I would have given this book a higher rating.
The dialogue was really well done. Both of the main characters had an incredibly distinctive voice that I was able to pick out almost immediately. What made this even more impressive is that there wasn’t a great deal of it to begin with. Most of what I learned about the setting and other characters happened in the descriptions, so it was really interesting to see how much material was packed into the dialogue that was included.
I’d recommend Time Travelling Dinos: The Pilot to anyone who enjoys time travel tales.