Timothy Mean and the Time Machine: Book Review

Timothy Mean invents a time machine.
And he's going to have some fun!

Title: Timothy Mean and the Time Machine
Author: William A.E. Ford
Illustrator: Marcelo Simonetti
ISBN: 9781760401085          Language: English

Classification: Fiction
Type: Picture Book
Themes: invention, imagination, time travel

What's it about?
Timothy Mean creates a time machine that allows him to go back and forth in time. This story follows his adventures over the course of one week.

The book rhymes, it has repetitive phrases and has a good dose of humor. The illustrations by Marcelo Simonetti are absolutely stunning.

Me being slightly picky, but Star Wars is written as star wars - probably to keep it generic but it bugged me just a tiny bit.

My Thoughts
This picture book was released in January 2019.

The first thing I want to say is THANK YOU for using British English. So many books that Australian children read have US English, and while the differences aren't major between the two, it is still wonderful to read 'mum' in a book.

By now you all know I have a soft spot for rhyming books, particularly if they're done well. This book follows a rather mischievous boy called Timothy Mean. This creative kid invents a time machine (this could possibly be used for a creative art or STEM activity where students invent their own) and each day of the week goes back in time. I like that it reinforces the order of the days of the week giving something different to use in junior primary classes because let's face it - I love The Very Hungry Caterpillar as much as the next teacher, but change is good. Activities therefor could include having students write out all the matching words and add an additional one that rhymes, or they could be asked to rewrite two lines (or create their own). I also like the idea of having a sequence activity where the students write the days of the week and either write or draw what happened.

I think that for the age this book hits the audience well. It has a distinct humour in the verses that reminds me a lot of Aaron Blabey's picture books, such as Pig the Pug and Thelma the Unicorn. Timothy has that fun streak that I believe both boys and girls would love.

Another plus is that the verse on the left-hand side of the book is repeated as a lead-in to each new day. This is a fantastic engaging strategy for disengaged and/or struggling readers because they can predict what's coming.

Overall, I really enjoyed this book and feel it would suit children aged 5-8.

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