In this seventh installment, the sleuths from Griswold’s Grammar School unravel yet another case involving a mysterious portal and a time-bending troublemaker.
Once again, the six young British gumshoes find themselves in the midst of something both puzzling and strange. As puberty looms, the group—three girls and three boys—has become divided along gender lines. The girls begin to watch an unusual student who is always—and somewhat anachronistically—rambling on about communists, while the boys start investigating a malevolent trio of classmates. With the discovery of a wormhole in their science lab and the changing of recent events, the group must converge and figure out a way to stop the time-traveling wrongdoers from rewriting history. As Allison’s series has progressed, the characters have aged with it, bringing increasing complexity to each case but maintaining its whimsy and never taking itself too seriously. Like its predecessors, this volume relates a complete case and works well as a stand-alone, though it has enough quiet in-jokes to reward devoted followers. Allison’s attention to detail in his characters is playful, with an especially keen eye to his protagonists’ stylish sartorial choices. However, those seeking diversity may be happier elsewhere; his mainstays are nearly all white, save for one who is black.
A delightfully quirky series whose eccentric charms haven’t faltered. (Graphic mystery/fantasy. 10-14)