Thursday, April 23, 2015

MIDDLE GRADE FANTASY: The Impossible Race by Chad Morris


In the final book of the Cragbridge Hall trilogy, Abby, Derick, and their friends must utilize their skills in time travel and technology to survive roving bands of dinosaurs, race through space, build robots, and fight virtual dragons.

It’s known as the Race—an annual tournament where teams of students compete in the hopes of winning an unbelievable prize. But before this year’s competition, Derick and Abby receive a terrifying message from the future: Charles Muns’s plan to control history is going to succeed. It will cost countless people their lives and change the destiny of the world. And there is nothing anyone can do to stop them.

Despite the danger, the twins gather their friends and enter the Race, ready to compete against the best of the best in order to claim what might turn out to be a key of ultimate power.

Can they compete the Race in time and stop Muns? Or has the future already been written?

A page-turning, time-travel adventure that teaches powerful lessons about choice and consequence, believing you can do hard things, and valuing our history.


Chad Morris would love to be able to control animal avatars, see history in 3D, and show everyone how he imagines stories. Since the inventions that would make that possible currently exist only in his imagination, he settles for reading, writing, playing basketball, rappelling down an occasional slot canyon, dating his wife, and hanging out with his five awesome kids. Chad speaks Portuguese, can play the Phineas and Ferb theme song on the guitar, and does decent impressions of a velociraptor and Voldemort—but not at the same time. He isn't very good at fixing his car, shopping for anything, cooking, or growing hair.


The conclusion to the Cragbridge Hall trilogy is full of twists and turns and plenty of excitement.  Abby and Derick and their friends are once again up against Charles Muns who is determined to use the Bridge (a time travel device) to control the world.  After receiving a message from the future that shakes them up, Abby and Derick are forced to face off with Muns without the aide of their parents and grandfather.  It all seems to revolve around the Race that the school sponsors every year.  After recruiting as many of the best students as they can, the team must win the Race in hopes of stopping Muns once and for all.  Once again, Chad Morris takes readers on a thrill ride as we follow the twins through their adventures.

I loved the technology that Morris has created.  The ability to use virtual reality to be a falcon for instance would be fantastic, especially for those like me who tend to be a bit klutzy.  I also really appreciated that the possible consequences of changing the past are explored along with the ramifications of the desires of one person overpowering the good of the whole.  I enjoyed this book very much.

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