top ten list of middle grade and YA time travel novels. (Really there were eleven, but I figured no one would notice.) I just finished a new one that definitely belongs on the list. The Wells Bequest by Polly Shulman is a companion book to her delightful 2010 middle grade novel, The Grimm Legacy. But the stories stand alone, so there's no need to read them in order.
The Wells in the title refers, of course, to H. G. Wells, and the plot centers around the time machine from his 1895 novella, The Time Machine. Leo and his crush, Jaya, have to travel back in time to the NYC of 1895. There, they attend a lecture at The Electric Club and meet Nikola Tesla and Samuel Clemens (who were, in fact, friends) and attempt to stop an ancestor of Leo's nemesis, Simon, from stealing the plans for Tesla's death ray. I'm not going to summarize any more of the plot, because I don't think I can explain it coherently, but it's a fun story, full of action, humor, young love, sci-fi allusions, and science references. Just read it.
Want to know more? Here's an excellent review from Charlotte's Library.