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A Handful of Time
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A Handful of Time

4.1 of 5 stars 4.10  ·  rating details  ·  1,604 ratings  ·  58 reviews
When Patricia's mother sends her to her cousins' cottage for the summer, Patricia doesn't want to go. She doesn't know her cousins at all, and she's never been good at camping or canoeing, let alone making new friends. When she arrives at the cottage, her worst fears come true: her cousin Kelly teases her; Aunt Ginnie and Uncle Doug feel sorry for her. She doesn't fit in. ...more
Paperback, 208 pages
Published August 31st 2003 by Penguin Books (first published February 1st 1987)
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The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey NiffeneggerOutlander by Diana GabaldonThe Time Machine by H.G. WellsTimeline by Michael CrichtonSlaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut
Best Time Travel Fiction
277th out of 1,000 books — 3,228 voters
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My To-Read Books
14th out of 30 books — 3 voters

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Community Reviews

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The importance of the J-stroke is greatly exaggerated in this book. I've lived my whole canoeing life without mastering it.
A Handful of Time is a Canadian classic. I believe it is old enough I can use the word classic. It’s a quick and easy read but there is no maximum age for this novel.
When twelve year old Patricia starts to watch her parent go through divorce she’s sent to spend the summer at a lake in Western Canada with her cousins. Patricia doesn’t want to be there and she doesn’t fit in. She feels lonely, isolated and extremely mundane. Her cousins tease her, she’s left out and all she really wants is to go h
Any reader has a long list of books from their past that hover at the edges of their memory. You read them as a child, you grow up, you forget about them, until years later, picking up a copy by sheer accident, a sudden rush of memory flits through your blood like an electric shock as, for just a fraction of a moment, you are ten years old again, curled up in a quiet corner somewhere out of reach of all the annoying adults who are annoyingly prone to interrupting you just at the best part, so wr ...more
I really liked this book I thought it was awesome I would so read it aigian
Oct 02, 2009 Rachel marked it as to-read
Emily said to read this!
I hope its great :D
A great book for ten to twelve year-old girls, even better when read along with their mothers.

The plot centres around the plight of twelve-year-old Patricia who is sent out West to spend the summer with her cousins while her parents remain behind in Toronto to iron out the details of their divorce. Patricia is doubly unsettled, as not only is her family falling apart but she finds herself in an awkward setting: unable to relate to the cousins she has just met and unprepared for a summer spent at
I started this novel last night and finished it this morning, which, although it is less than 200 pages, says a lot. I found the concept very interesting; a young girl is sent to spend the summer with her distant relatives while her mother and father sort out their divorce papers. At first she hates it there; her cousins don't accept her, her family members keep bringing up the divorce and she doesn't have a clue about the country life they lead. But soon she discovers a gold pocket watch under ...more
There are some books that one can read and enjoy for a lifetime. I remember receiving this book for my tenth birthday. I read it and loved it and read it again. I have read it at least a dozen times over the years. I never get tired of it. I used to have nightmares once in a while and I would have this book beside my bed, open to a random page and start reading until I felt better. It is one of my great comforts in life. This is the only book on my large set of shelves that looks like it has bee ...more
Madison Connolly
Excellent coming of age story, I read it as a girl and I enjoy it as an adult as well. Wonderful story with mystical elements.
Amanda White
I think I read this book back in middle school but I have never forgotten it. I not a huge fan of realistic fiction but this paints a good picture of what child goes through when their parents separate.

Patricia's world is turned upside down when her parents separate they send her to her cousins where she find a watch under the loose floorboards. Once she winds the watch she finds herself transported back in time to when mother was her age.

The book made me to see my mother as she grew up and lik
Patricia does what we all wish we could do. With the power to visit our parents in their youth and better understand who they are now by examining who they were at our age. Lovely concept. Lovely characters and you can feel the heartache and wonder as Patricia discovers who she really is, and who her mother is, and why, despite all their personal differences, they are exactly the same person.

Sometimes, the trials our parents faced are the exact same as our own, and we could both learn from the k
Clivemichael Justice
Well penned. Evocative and descriptive
Mar 21, 2008 Wendy rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Constance
Shelves: time-travel
I read this in one sitting and for hours after I finished it, kept catching myself thinking "wonder what's going to happen next... oh, right, I already finished that".

Time-travel aficionados will miss the usual time-travel trappings... not really any discussion of "how" or "why", no fears about being trapped in one time or another, and the traveler being invisible neatly lets her out of several of the standard problems. This is definitely a mother-daughter book--the actual time travel is practic
Anne Hamilton
Patricia’s famous parents are separating, pending divorce, and they send her to visit her relatives in Western Canada for the holidays. Patricia simply doesn’t fit in with her rough and tumble cousins. In an old deserted cottage she finds, hidden under a loose floorboard, an old-fashioned fob watch which takes her back to the past—and enables her an insight into her mother’s childhood. She finds herself drawn to the girl her mother used to be. A deeply satisfying book which gently probes many co ...more
This was one of my favourite childhood books, and I decided to re-read it. I threw out my copy years ago, so I had to find a new one. After looking for it for a while, I found a good-as-new copy at a secondhand bookstore! This book was a very pleasant read and I really enjoyed it. Of course, it does read as a children's book, because it is that, but it's still nice to read it, even now I'm older.
Lauren Acton
I loved this book as a kid. At the start of every summer, when I slip into sandals and/or start going barefoot for the first time, I think of Patricia, and how her feet weren't callused like her cousins' feet and they looked down on her for her pale, city feet.
Its a lovely YA story with some good time travel that evokes a nostalgia for summer and cottaging in a way I can't quite describe.
This was a great little YA award book that I just happened to pick up. I really enjoyed reading it, and I appreciated the message it gave me. One of them is that people can change, and people can learn to accept, and work together. Things will get better. Good things may happen in the end. Things will all work out. I would read this book again in a heart beat.
This book will spur your imagination and bring you right into the world of free summer time and lake houses.
You will sympathize with Patricia, laugh with Patricia, and cry with Patricia. You'll even help to solve a strange mysterious question that Patricia faces.
This book is good for those facing tough situations. It is uniquely itself.
Started our book club out with this book. We spent the first year looking for books mainly that dealt with realtionships. This was gret because she travels back to when her mom was a teenager and then goes forward to their relationship currently. The topics brought about great discussion on "yes mom was a teenager like you"
This book was pretty good. More for pre-teen girls. Patricia who was sent to her aunt's house for the summer finds an old time piece and can time travel back to when her mother was her age. She comes to understand her mother's decisions and how hard it was for her mom growing up.
What a good book! I found myself in tears while reading the last two chapters. There is amazing character development and it's one of those books that gets you thinking- what would I do in this situation? It moved at a great pace and never seemed to drag on to me.
Chapters Rideau
Brittney says: "This book was one of my all-time favourites growing up and I have re-read it numerous times. It delivers a good message to young adult readers (specifically young girls) about how your parents are a lot more like you than you realize."
Kat Hardy

I read this book when I was younger and remembered it being a good book. So I decided to read or again , and i don't know how I didn't realize that this book is absolutely amazing! Could literally read this book over and over again.
Mar 23, 2008 Laurie added it
Recommends it for: I already gave my copy to Wendy
Shelves: canadian-fiction
Fifth book I've read by Pearson (previously, Awake and Dreaming and the War Guests trilogy, all recommended). I enjoyed this, reminded me a bit of The Root Cellar (more the present-day parts, not the back in time parts).
I absolutely adored this book when I was in elementary school. I thought it was such a cool concept to have the character go back in time. Especially since that character met her own mother as a young girl!
This was for sure a book from my childhood. I revisited it today, took about three hours to blast through and it was a good story, one that might just spark the imagination of a 12 year old.
I read this book for the first time in 6th grade. Seven years later and I still remember the joy from reading it. It was one of the first books I ever truly enjoyed and got me into reading.
Time travel + mother daughter issues + bildungsroman = one of my favourite books when I was a kid and the quality of the story has not diminished as I've gotten older.
I find the whole idea of going back in time absolutely fascinating. And to return to your mum's past! To see all these adults as children, young, innocent.
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Kit Pearson spent her childhood between Edmonton Alberta and Vancouver, British Columbia. As a high-school student, she returned to Vancouver to be educated at Crofton House School. She obtained a degree in English Literature at the University of Alberta, and spent several years following the degree doing odd jobs or travelling in Europe.
In 1975, she began her Library degree at the University of B
More about Kit Pearson...
The Sky Is Falling (The Guests of War Trilogy, #1) Awake and Dreaming Looking At The Moon (The Guests of War Trilogy, #2) The Lights Go On Again The Daring Game

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