Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Johnny and the Bomb (Johnny Maxwell, #3)” as Want to Read:
Johnny and the Bomb (Johnny Maxwell, #3)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Johnny and the Bomb (Johnny Maxwell #3)

3.8  ·  Rating Details ·  6,326 Ratings  ·  183 Reviews

It's May 21 1941, thought Johnny. It's war.

Johnny Maxwell and his friends have to do something when they find Mrs Tachyon, the local bag lady, semi-conscious in an alley . . . as long as it's not the kiss of life.

But there's more to Mrs Tachyon than a squeaky trolley and a bunch of dubious black bags. Somehow she holds the key to different times, different eras - inc

Paperback, 263 pages
Published (first published 1996)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.
This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Dane Cobain
Feb 10, 2017 Dane Cobain rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I’ve always been a fan of Terry Pratchett’s Johnny Maxwell series – they were written and published during what I’d consider to be his golden years, and what’s interesting about the Johnny Maxwell books is that they’re set in our reality.

In this book, Johnny and his friends take a trip back in time after finding a magic, time-travelling trolley that belongs to the local bag lady. That allows Pratchett to experiment with genre, by writing a sort of realistic fantasy, which has some grounding in h
Alex Baugh
Oct 23, 2010 Alex Baugh rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: world-war-2
Today I am revisiting my very first blogs posts here and on my other blog Randomly Reading. It isn't because I haven't been reading, I have actually read lots of blogable books lately. I just thought it would be fun to see this again. And I still love it as much now as I did on all subsequent readings of it.

So here's what I wrote on June 11, 2010:

Life isn’t terribly exciting in Blackbury, England in 1996 until 21 May 1941, the night of the Blackberry Blitz and the destruction of Paradise Street,
colleen the convivial curmudgeon

Pratchett has covered a lot of ground in this trilogy: aliens and war, ghosts and our connections to our past, and time-travel and, um, war again.

Perhaps it's because, as I said in my review for Johnny and the Dead. I would pick ghosts over aliens - or time-travel - or perhaps that story just resonated more for me for some other reason, but it as definitely my favorite of the lot. I think this one would come in second.

It didn't quite have the same level of humor or pathos has the second book,
It's Terry Pratchett's doing, so of course it's fun. It plays around with the idea of time travel in a way that doesn't break my brain too much, which I can accept easily enough to drag me along for the ride. I'm told it's not the first book in the series, though, and it shows: I would probably have cared more if, well, I'd already cared.

I'm not really sure what to say about it. I was quite excited to get a Terry Pratchett book on my course, but now I've got it, I don't think I'm going to write
Nov 05, 2011 Lolliepop rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2011
Like it!

Best quote:

"When all else failed, she tried being reasonable.”
B.  Barron
Jun 04, 2011 B. Barron rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Beware the trousers of time.
Apr 07, 2017 Chip rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The first half of the book is pretty bad. The humor doesn't work and there is so little detail. But once Johnny takes control, the story starts to improve quite a bit. I don't think I enjoyed the book as much as some of Pratchett's others. Very interesting way of traveling thru time.
Paul Wardman
Apr 21, 2015 Paul Wardman rated it really liked it
The third and final Johnny Maxwell book although I wasn't aware until after I'd got part way through. Luckily the books read as stand alones featuring recurring characters and the only thing that progresses in a chronological order is the situation happening behind the closed door of Johnny's home.
There were still some social comments that gave food for thought in this one, how racism is treated and its use has changed over the years (some would say not a lot these days) and how events from the
Feb 26, 2008 Jared rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fantasy, young-adult
The third book in Terry Pratchett's Johnny Maxwell series starts out with a bang. Literally. A bomb has fallen in the midst of Johnny's city. But the bomb dropped in World War II. Johnny discovers the history of the bomb and can't stop thinking about the people affected by it. One of the people affected by it ends up in Johnny's time -- the local bag lady, who is so mentally and temporally displaced that sometimes her body follows along.

Johnny and one of his friends help the lady get to the hosp
Aidan O'malley
Feb 23, 2014 Aidan O'malley rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"Johnny and the bomb," by Terry Pratchett, is a superb book about a young boy, Johnny, who mysteriously wakes up over forty years before he was even born.The date is May 21, 1941, the day German bombs drop on his hometown. Thanks to the knowledge he has gained during school, he quickly realizes this. Johnny is stuck in a huge position whether or not to warn the civilians living there now and save their lives, or let history take its place and have to witness everybody die. This book was well wri ...more
Дени Проданова
Темата за пътуването във времето погледната отгоре, отдолу, отвътре и изобщо откъдето е възмножно да се погледне и разгледа е темата на тази книжка. Определено има хляб за размисъл относто алтернативните вселени, гащите на времето, рибата с картофки и това, колко акъл има в главата на едно 13-годихно хлапе. Джони се самоопределя като тъп, но може би точно там е разковничето. Според мен от много знания в главата на човека не остава място за истината.
Rosie Powell
Mar 02, 2012 Rosie Powell rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My brother's birthday is today, and as I was wrapping this book (and a few others) I thought '...I haven't read this since I was twelve...' So I'm reading it again. I love Mrs Tachyon. I really need to stop reading children's books. However, it's interesting to see how Pratchett's writing has advanced. His style is terribly similar, but the plots and characters are less complicated and far less clever. Anyway, I'm sure my brother is going to love it.
Feb 24, 2014 Lea rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: time-travel, kids
While I didn't enjoy this book as much as others Pratchett has written, I will say this: he doesn't dummy anything down for kids. I usually have to look up a word or two in every one of his 'children's novels' and in "Johnny and the bomb', the logic involved in this time travel is mental aerobics, to say the least. I might have enjoyed this more in a different mood.
Jan 03, 2017 Carol rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The final book in the trilogy. I quite liked it, although all the time stuff was rather complicated and it took me a while to get. I like how time travel was managed in the book, with not so much when's and where's, but more as places to be.
Jun 07, 2016 Michael rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: terry-pratchett
Definitely my favorite out of the Johnny Maxwell trilogy. This comical tale follows Johnny and friends traveling backwards and forwards (and sometimes around) in time to 1941 around the time of the Blackbury Blitz. This story is a funny story with a great plot and is well worth a read.
Jun 23, 2009 Magda rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi
Millenium hand and shrimp!
Jun 24, 2013 Michaela rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Johnny s partiou je späť. Toto je milá a nenáročná knižka o cestovaní v čase. A zase sú tu svojrázne postavičky, nohavice času a nákupné vozíky. Teda, aspoň jeden...
May 03, 2017 Kevin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Unfortunately read a North American edition so words like cookie and trash were incongruously appearing in wartime England. Good luck getting anything sensible dialling 911 as well! References to The Thunderbirds and Flowerpot Men were left intact so surely the American reader would have had much less trouble with biscuit and rubbish! All that aside, this was a gentle Pratchett romp with sly humour at many turns.
Jul 02, 2010 John rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 25, 2016 Data rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Totally entranced by this book. Yes, I enjoy the tongue-in-cheek fun of the Discworld, but not nearly as much as I loved this. It is really 4.5 stars ... only lacked a tiny smidge of something ... to make it unparalleled in its class.
Erica Mukherjee
Time travel is a tricky concept. Because time is fluid, or particulate, or static or what have you, it is very difficult to harness its nature and cram it into the solid pages of a novel. Every reader has his own pet theory on the paradoxes that time travel may or may not cause and is therefore apt to be unsatisfied if the author does not subscribe to his personal believes on the matter. Generally any attempt at a dive into the complexities of time travel leaves the author exhausted and the rea ...more
Manuel Chavez
Sep 29, 2014 Manuel Chavez rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Hello I am going to tell you about Johnny and the Bomb. Also I'm going to tell you about why the conflict is important in the story. this book is good for the past. The genre is mystery. I like this book because it has a lot of twists to it.

The setting of my book is in 1940's. Johnny wanted to help Mrs. Tachyon because she was getting hospitalized. Johnny and four of his friend went to go see Mrs. Tachyon at the hospital but Mrs. Tachyon told them a secret that her black bags can take you bac
Cynthia Egbert
Pratchett for youth! While I, admittedly, find the Johnny Maxwell trilogy somewhat depressing, it is still a fun read. And the kids will love it. This one involves Johnny and his ragtag bunch getting caught up in some time travel that throws them back to WWII. And there are all the inherent questions of how time travel would affect future events. There is much food for thought here and this would make a great summer read for parents and kids. It will foster some powerful discussion.

Some favorite
Sep 16, 2012 Wayne rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
We find Johnny has even more abilities. He's described as slightly odd, that his brain doesn't work like most people's. If you read "Only You Can Save Mankind" and "Johnny and the Dead" you would know this, but if you didn't read the prior two Johnny books, it'll be ok, but you MUST go read those too. Pratchett does a great job of creating a series that can be read in any order. So far he has yet to reference any of the other "Johnny" books in any of the "Johnny" books. So while it's the same ch ...more
Julie Davis
Feb 14, 2015 Julie Davis rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
You know a book is good when you can't put it down even when you're rereading it. My original review is below.


In my favorite of the Johnny Maxwell trilogy, Johnny crosses paths with Mrs. Tachyon, a bag lady who also is a time traveller. He and his friends travel back to WWII in their town with the predictable changing of time that must be fixed. However, instead of simply changing time back to its previous path, Johnny wants to prevent a bomb wiping out Paradise Street in the middle of
Barahir Gray
Jan 08, 2014 Barahir Gray rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
През последните седмици се случиха много интересни неща около личността на Тери Пратчет и неговото творчество. Накратко казано той почина. А творчеството му секна заедно със сърцето му. Малко по-назад във времето, обаче (около седмица мисля), започнах да чета "Само ти можеш да спасиш света". Честно казано не очаквах да бъда във възторг от творбата му. След последната страница вече мислех съвсем друго. Не мислех, че е време за продълженията на тази трилогия (ако така мога да се изразя). Четох дру ...more
Nov 15, 2010 Kmcq rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Could you imagine being able to time travel? Well Johnny Maxwell and his friends can in Terry Pratchet’s Johnny and the Bomb. I enjoyed this book and found it to be very interesting.
In the story, Johnny and his friends found Mrs. Tachyon, a local bag lady lying semiconscious in an alley. Then they called an ambulance, and took her mysterious, squeaky cart home to safeguard it. It was a mysterious collection of large black bags, and a vicious cat named guilty. Rumor also had it that the bags hel
May 19, 2010 Linda rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The trousers of life have never felt so worn, or cross-legged. This is Terry's style that I love, from "Dig for Victory, as if it were some kind of turnip" thru to "Take life as it was going to come ... And if it didn't come, go and fetch it". Sneaky in reference and observant of everything the story had me chuckling, and then a little reminiscent as the kids ignorantly whinged about nobody listening to them "when I know stuff!". I wonder how many kids reading the story get that reference. To th ...more
Cade Hooper
Johnny And The Bomb
Terry Pratchett
Johnny and the Bomb is a book about a boy named Johnny and a group of his friends discover a bomb dropped in the middle of their city, Blackbury: England, but the bomb was dropped in World War II. Although it is now 1996 in the story. They find a local deranged woman is injured and take her to the hospital, but her shopping cart that she always has has lumpy sacs in it which turn out to take them back in time. So with these they go back to find out more about th
Apr 03, 2008 Mike rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Mike by: Vengence
Good book. I think this is my favorite of the three which seems to be the general concensus. Now I just need to see the TV movie they made of it and I'll be really happy with all likelyhood. Or I could just read it again and look for clues I missed the first time around. I have to say this is a fantastic time-travel book not just a fantastic kids' book. It makes sense, it explains things to people but it's not condesending. It doesn't treat the past as a great place where everyone was happy peop ...more
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
What would YOU do? 3 11 Jan 11, 2013 08:55AM  
  • The Most Amazing Man Who Ever Lived
  • The Leaky Establishment
  • The Fairy Tales Of Madame d'Aulnoy
  • Ash Road
  • Halinka
  • Keväällä isä sai siivet (Austraasia, #1)
  • Bijna iedereen kon omvallen
  • Mi Amigo El Pintor
  • Marcelino Pan Y Vino
  • A Kid for Two Farthings
  • Footrot Flats 1 (Footrot Flats, #1)
  • Uncle
  • Arizona (Lucky Luke #3)
  • La regina dei Caraibi
  • My Favorite Fantasy Story
  • The Swish of the Curtain
  • Brendon Chase
Sir Terry Pratchett sold his first story when he was thirteen, which earned him enough money to buy a second-hand typewriter. His first novel, a humorous fantasy entitled The Carpet People, appeared in 1971 from the publisher Colin Smythe.

Terry worked for many years as a journalist and press officer, writing in his spare time and publishing a number of novels, including his first Discworld novel,
More about Terry Pratchett...

Other Books in the Series

Johnny Maxwell (3 books)
  • Only You Can Save Mankind (Johnny Maxwell, #1)
  • Johnny and the Dead (Johnny Maxwell, #2)

Share This Book

“You're not allowed to call them dinosaurs any more," said Yo-less. "It's speciesist. You have to call them pre-petroleum persons.” 203 likes
“When all else failed, she tried being reasonable.” 25 likes
More quotes…