Margaret Peterson Haddix is the author of many popular books, including the Shadow Children series. Running Out of Time was her first novel, and it may be my favorite–although it’s hard to choose! Jessie is 13 and lives in a log cabin in a settlement in the woods of Indiana in 1840–or at least that what she thinks. When children in the town start getting deathly ill, Jessie’s mom tells her that the year is actually 1996. The whole town is a living history village where the residents are always in character, and the children were never told about the modern world. The village was supposed to still have access to modern medicine, but no help is coming. Jessie has to escape the village and survive in 1996 to find someone who will get them the medicine they need. She has to be very brave: she’s never worn pants or seen a toilet, and she doesn’t know who she can trust. This is one of my favorite books to reread, with it’s combination of modern day and historical fiction and a brave girl doing the best she can.
Reviewed by Rachel