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Running Out of Time

3.99  ·  Rating details ·  22,313 ratings  ·  1,444 reviews
Jessie lives with her family in the frontier village of Clifton, Indiana. When diphtheria strikes the village and the children of Clifton start dying, Jessie's mother sends her on a dangerous mission to bring back help. But beyond the walls of Clifton, Jessie discovers a world even more alien and threatening than she could have imagined, and soon she finds her own life in ...more
Paperback, 184 pages
Published 2004 by Scholastic (first published 1995)
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3.99  · 
Rating details
 ·  22,313 ratings  ·  1,444 reviews

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Nov 03, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I can't believe I forgot this book existed. I remember this from my childhood. Remembering books from that time period always gives me the happiest nostalgic feeling.
Valynne Maetani
Jan 19, 2008 rated it liked it
This book reminded me a lot of an M. Night Shyamalan movie which I won't name, just in case someone thinks I would be giving away too much of the book's plot. The storylines are kind of similar, but I think that I like the plot twist in this book better than the movie.
Lars Guthrie
Mar 27, 2011 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Emma Louise
Mar 15, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites, children-s
This is probably one of my favourite books ever. I love the innovative idea behind it, the pace (which is FAST), and the drama.
Basically, it's the story of a girl who lives in a village in the 1800s. Only it's not really the 1800s. It's a kind of living museum and none of the children know that. Except something's gone wrong and they're all trapped. Jesse escapes and on her own and has to move through this strange modern world to find help for her village.
The only thing I can think of to complai
Candace Robinson
Loved this one! And I swear this is where the idea for The Village came from! I loved that movie too!
Aug 06, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Riveting story about a world within a world. My in-laws live near Conner Prairie, Indiana which is an outdoor living history museum; we had just returned from visiting there when we read this book. The frontier village of Clifton, Indiana which Haddix describes seems much like the tourist attraction, Conner Prairie, a mid-American country town frozen in 1836. But what if there were real people in the living history museum? Wouldn't that make it much more interesting? And what if those people did ...more
Wade WDM
Sep 18, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
”Jessie wanted to ask so many questions, she couldn’t think where to begin. She wanted to know about the ‘something dangerous,’ but she wanted to understand everything else Ma had told her first. She wanted to watch Pa and Mr. Smyth and the Ruddles and all the other adults in Clifton and see what they were hiding.”

I’m not one to begin rampant speculation on a theory. In the end, there’s usually a logical explanation for everything. But in this instance, there are just too many examples to igno
Oct 15, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: childrens
This book, for about 10-14 year old girls, reads like a rebuttal to the pioneer-girl fantasies those same girls likely had a few years earlier if they read The Little House Collection or played Oregon Trail -- at any rate, those fantasies stand a chance of giving the young reader a better chance of understanding this surprisingly sophisticated and action-packed novel. The driving motivation behind the book's set-up is the lure of old-timey charm on tourists, which has been perverted in a twist b ...more
Jason McIntire
Sep 29, 2018 rated it liked it
I've heard it said that you should avoid cultural references as a writer because they make your work seem dated. That's true of "Running out of Time," but also pretty much unavoidable: The point of the book is throwing a character from the 1800's into modern time, and the time described - in terms of fashion, entertainment, and technology - is very much 1996, and will never seem present-day again. This gives the story a "modern vintage" feel that readers may or may not appreciate.

I picked up thi
Shayne Bauer
This book is a very quick read, as it is intended for a fairly young audience. With its simple characters and plot, it is not exactly captivating, but I did enjoy the protagonist's commentary on the elements of our time period, which were completely foreign to her. I also like the dual meaning of the title. Many of my students enjoy Haddix's books, and this is one that I will recommend to them.
Julianne (Outlandish Lit)
May 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book was DOOOOPE if I remember correctly from childhood.
Nov 17, 2013 rated it really liked it
“Running out of Time” by Margaret Peterson Haddix was a very interesting quick-read. Due to the outrageous turns of events and the in-depth character developments, this book was a “page turner”, in the truest sense of the word.
To begin, the plot and turn of events easily caught me by surprise. For example, the book started out with a fairly normal family who obviously lived in the past. In fact, it later states that the year was currently 1840. I actually read the back of the book before I start
Kristine Hansen
Mar 03, 2012 rated it liked it
I liked the premise of this book more than I did the execution. The set up was great, and I felt like I understood the world very well. But the book seemed to fall apart a bit at the end, where things got rushed. I wanted to see a bit more deeper characterization overall. I think that for what it is, it's a solid and enjoyable read though, and would recommend it if you're looking for light entertainment.
A fun, quick read. I enjoyed visiting Jessie’s world for the first time since 5th grade \o/
May 11, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: library, 3-4-5
Meh. Ok-ish, but wouldn’t recommend it for kids bc the main character spends the entire book looking for pay phones.
Dec 31, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: day-reads
This is an old favorite, which I listened to via audiobook. We found what was most interesting *now* was the idea that the "present" in the book is 1996, effectively making it a period piece whether we're in the tourist attraction or the real world. Imagine if Jessie's mom had told her about phones in the 80's, but Jessie walks out into 2018! With an adult perspective we also had a fuller understanding of the darker implications of certain aspects of the book (ethics, mental health), which we di ...more
C.B. Cook
Jul 17, 2016 rated it really liked it
This book was really interesting! The idea of a colony of people who thought (for the most part) that they lived in the 1800s was really cool, and Jessie's experiences after escaping were really neat. Everything worked out differently than I thought it might, and there was some untapped potential in the story, but it was a really enjoyable read! The only part I didn't like was Pa's trouble adjusting and psychological problems. But otherwise, a great book!
Aug 16, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I like this book because its about a girl who is in New York and she was exploring the city and one day she gets lost and her mom calls her to come home and she gets lost in the city and she has a minimum time to get home so she starts her time and by the time she gets to were she wants to go shes running out of time this is why i like this book.
Mar 27, 2015 rated it really liked it
I remember the first time I read this, I was thirteen and read this book in one day sitting in a hammock during summer. I loved the characters and all the plot twists. This was my first fearful social utopia book and it sparked my interest that I still have today.
Apr 23, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
One of my faves as a kid. I wonder where my copy went? Anyway, supposedly MPH got super pissed when The Village came out, and she accused M. Night Shamalamadingdong of stealing her story. I have no idea about this. I have never seen The Village. The End.
Sam (Hissing Potatoes)
3.5 stars. I think a younger reader would appreciate it more than I did, though I did find parts compelling. Also I hope M. Night Shyamalan has acknowledged that his movie The Village clearly drew inspiration from this book.
Mar 06, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dystopia, nostalgia, mg
I was really into historical fiction as a kid, and this was my gateway into dystopia and worlds where the entire society was not to be trusted (instead of just random evil adults). I should probably reread it to see how it holds up.
Hanna Stuerzl
Dec 28, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This is a really enthralling book that keeps you on the edge of your seat:P I absolutely love it and I have read it several times:D
Jun 01, 2018 rated it liked it
It wasn't a bad book, but pretty much nothing happened.
Denise Mills
Apr 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
My daughter recommended this book one day in the library. I can’t keep up with her hours a day of reading but wanted to try one of her favorites. This was a good mystery book. There was plenty of pull to keep me reading but it wasn’t overwhelmingly scary for a young reader. The main character, Jessie finds out she has been lied to her entire life. The only world she knew was living in a cabin with her family in 1840 until her mother confides that it’s really 1996 and she must escape the village ...more
Jan 14, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interesting book, and I can see why people thought the movie "The Village" was based on this. I do wish there'd been a bit more information about what exactly was happening legal-wise with the parents and such at the end. But this is told from Jessie's view only, and it makes sense that we only know what she is told.
Ellen Hamilton
Jul 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Ooooh, this book gave me the shivers. It was very well-written and very well-planned. I found it quite suspenseful, and as I held onto the book tightly, my fingers almost froze with pure terror, even though we're right smack in the middle of summer.

Towards the end, when Jessie takes the brave step and decides to call a news conference herself, I was in tears. I cried all the way until the end. I was sad and relieved and happy all at once. It's been a while since I read such a stimulating, nerve-
Mar 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This was a great book. I read this for the Battle of the Books in my school and if I knew about it before I would have read it for fun.
Emmy Habib
Mar 22, 2019 rated it really liked it
i really enjoyed reading the book running out of time by Margaret Peterson Haddix. You should read this book if you enjoy a fast paced fiction book. The book is about a girl named jessie who finds out her whole life is a lie. The people are basically living in a simulation with tourists watching there every move, and everyone tires to escape.
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Margaret Peterson Haddix grew up on a farm near Washington Court House, Ohio. She graduated from Miami University (of Ohio) with degrees in English/journalism, English/creative writing and history. Before her first book was published, she worked as a newspaper copy editor in Fort Wayne, Indiana; a newspaper reporter in Indianapolis; and a community college instructor and freelance writer in Danvil ...more
“You bite off more than you can chew, 'course you're going to choke. One bite at a time. And that goes for thinking things, too, not just food.” 7 likes
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