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The Lost Track of Time

really liked it 4.00  ·  Rating details ·  1,630 ratings  ·  298 reviews
A magical fantasy, an allegorical cautionary tale, a feast of language, a celebration of creativity--this dazzling debut novel is poised to become a story for the ages!

Penelope is running out of time!She dreams of being a writer, but how can she pursue her passion when her mother schedules every minute of her life? And how will she ever prove that writing is worthwhile if
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published March 31st 2015 by Scholastic Press
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Ella K Yes, it does. While the end of the book is slightly confusing, Paige Britt is a wonderful author.

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really liked it Average rating 4.00  · 
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 ·  1,630 ratings  ·  298 reviews

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Ms. Yingling
Nov 24, 2014 rated it liked it
Penelope is very much overscheduled by her mother and father, who just want her to have as many possibilities as she can. On the first day of summer vacation, her mother presents her with a jam packed schedule where even fifteen minutes of free time is a rarity. Penelope would love to spend time just being, as well as hanging out with quirky older neighbor Miss Maddie, drinking tea, and thinking about books that she might someday write. One day, when the calendar pages have stuck together and sh ...more
I really enjoyed the creative wordplay and storytelling in this book. So many puns! Kids will definitely relate to Penelope and appreciate her ability to moodle with the best of them. Despite the creativity and the interesting worlds constructed in this book, it just didn't grab me. Usually a book like this will take me a short time to read, but I kept wanting to put it down because I just wasn't that invested. I kept coming back, though, and did eventually finish it. I would guess that bigger f ...more
Mar 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
The Lost Track of Time isn't just a beautifully written novel that yanked me into the pages immediately, The Lost Track of Time is a touching work of art which made me question and examine my own life and my relationship with external and internal expectations as well as the fast paced world around me. The main character, Penelope, is someone who I felt a deep connection with. Paige Britt is a masterful artist who has created a majestic novel for all ages. I can't wait to share this novel with m ...more
Apr 27, 2015 rated it it was ok
I wanted so badly for this book to be more than it was. The concept reminded me of The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster, which is one of my most beloved books, but this "retelling" fell flat. What makes the Phantom Tollbooth such a compelling read is the use of an authoritarian model of the moralizing allegory. The Lost Track of Time is a cheap imitation of that.

Penelope’s mother and father are caricatures. They are so over-the-top with scheduling Penelope’s time and refusing to listen to her
Sarah Swann
Apr 07, 2019 rated it liked it
This was cute! It was very whimsical. I loved the concepts of time that the author twisted to make a whole little world out of it. It definitely takes the reader on an adventure. It wasn’t the best thing I’ve read, but I can see how kids love it.
Iris R.
Dec 20, 2017 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this book because it had a lot of interesting characters in it. It also had amazing landscapes. This book would be perfect for anyone who likes adventures. This book is amazing and you should like it to. It's about a girl who has adventures to different lands. If you want to know what happened next read this book to find out. ...more
Nov 26, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
If you take Madeline L'Engle, Roal Dahl, and Frank Baum and put them together to come up with a great story they would undoubtedly come up with something like this wonderful writer - Paige Britt - came up with. This story is so good, it is imaginative and above all, fun. I had the pleasure of listening to the audio version of this book with my four kids and ALL of us loved it!!! There are so many aspects of this story that are so inventive. There is word-play, adventure, quirky characters, a cla ...more
Jun 02, 2016 rated it really liked it
First thing I noticed - book design is reminiscent of The Neverending Story (which didn't impress me), what with heavy paper, monochrome illustrations, etc. Second, the adventure that's dependent on word-play, metaphor, and philosophy owes a huge debt to The Phantom Tollbooth (which I've loved for over 4 decades). (Juster's book is mentioned in the acknowledgements.)

When I was able to stop making comparisons and immerse myself in the book, I began to enjoy it a lot more. Besides all the Worry Wa
Apr 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing
AMAZING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! In the beginning i wanted to punch her parents so bad. lol. You should definitley read it. I love how the author makes all sorts of creatures and foods up to make a whole other world. Totally five star.
Saif Osman
Jul 28, 2016 rated it it was ok
2 stars because it was a little confusing and it didn't have much action. ...more
Apr 20, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: kids-books, fantasy, solid
This book is a silly parable about the virtues of creativity, imagination, and thinking outside the box, wrapped in a thick coating of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland-type absurdity. It was all right -- a quick, inoffensive read, but there wasn't much there beyond a shallow romp and a lot of time terminology. ...more
Sarah Tungate
May 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Kept me up all night! I can relate slightly to this book in a way of never have down time but it kept me on the edge of my seat! Very interesting.
Aug 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Philosophical and convicting for the adult reader. Imaginative and so fun for the kid reader. Loved this book!
Clever wordplay enhances this allegory of modern society that is so overbooked in their day (slaves to the clock, so to speak) that no one has time for ideas or thought or moodling. "If I can't moodle I can't write"

Penelope wants to be a writer, but her mother has other plans for her. "If you weren't so caught up in your fantasies, you wouldn't be behind in your studies." Her mother has a jam packed summer planned for Penelope, leaving little time for her to write. "If I don't do something, my l
Reminiscent of The Phantom Tollbooth (from which it takes its main inspiration), Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, The Wonderful Wizard of Oz and, quirkily, The Lego Movie, Ms. Britt’s first novel deals with a girl who yearns to be a writer. But she’s stuck with parents who micro-manage her every day.

Penelope’s adventure (dream? imagination?) deals heavily with the notion of time. Its significance permeates her world as wordplay and actuality. Puns about times are deft and the action more or les
Chris Otto
Jan 07, 2016 rated it really liked it
I suspect this is a book that a lot of kids will enjoy, and it's great to see a female protagonist.

I would give it 4 stars for the targeted age range, which I would put at 7 to 14, depending upon the reading and maturity levels of the child.

For grown-ups who enjoy reading Middle Grade, I'd give it 3 to 3.5 stars. The wordplay, which I know is the main twist of the book, can be a bit much, even forced on one or two occasions. (As an aside, its wordplay reminded me of a book version of the old Inf
Jul 12, 2017 rated it did not like it
Recommends it for: no one
306 pages. I read two chapters. Kind of boring. A girl is not enjoying her summer. Her mom has her on a rigid, ridiculous schedule. Dad keeps giving her prep talks about what is upcoming. They forbid her to visit her neighbor Ms. Mattie. So far is it sooooooo BORING. Not recommended.
Andrea Eshelman
Whimsical, fun story, great word play! We could all stand to 'Moodle' a little more! ...more
Medeea Serban
Mar 23, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Is very boring. Not my tipe
Overscheduled Penelope wants nothing more than to be a writer, but that requires time to sit and think and write. Her parents have her every summer moment scheduled (literally), and have decided in addition to throw away her writing notebooks so she won't waste any more time on them. When her mother accidentally leaves an empty day on Penelope's schedule, she literally falls into it and finds herself in another world altogether. In this world, the evil Chronos has taken over the land and has ban ...more
Klaudia Janek
Dec 14, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: libres
The Lost Track of Time is a perfect choice for readers who feel overscheduled by their parents or themselves. On the first day of summer, Penelope’s mother gives her a full schedule where she doesn’t really even get a 15 minute break. Penelope says, “If I don't do something, my life will turn into a workflow diagram." Penelope dreams of being a writer and in order to do that, she needs time to write. Miss Maddie, Penelope’s neighbor, is the only person who understands this. One day, Penelope fin ...more
Sara M.
Jun 09, 2017 rated it really liked it
Rating: 4.5 Stars

For some time, I have been looking for a book to read from cover to cover and, surprisingly, this book was the one. Even though this book was meant for young readers, I still found myself relating to Penelope (the main character) and her dilemma.
The book follows Penelope, a young girl who aspires to be a writer one day. However, that dream is challenged by her mother who organizes and plans every minute of Penelope’s life to the point where she has no time for herself. One day,
Aug 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The Lost Track of Time
Paige Britt
August 28th

The whimsical fantasy book The Lost Track of Time, by Paige Britt, is perhaps my favorite book of all time! The main character, Penelope, is stuck in a world of every minute of her life being planned out by her mother but, one day, there is a hole in her schedule. Suddenly, Penelope falls into a magical world, being sucked in by the time. In this world she meets Dill a quirky man trying to escape the take-over of Chronos, a time obsessed mad-man turnin
May 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The Lost Track of Time
by Paige Britt
This book is a unique, page-turner, and thriller. I would definitely recommend this book to all fantasy/adventure lovers. The way Paige Britt put this book together is amazing. There are so many twist and turns that all come together really well. I personally didn't dislike anything about the book, but I can definitely see where someone could get confused.

I was really drawn to the main character Penelope, because I could relate to her. She always felt like
Anisha D
Mar 16, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Back Book summary:
This book is about a girl named Penelope who is Extremely busy child. Penelope’s mother is energetic and sees that no time is wasted in Penelope’s day. There is no time for day-dreaming, writing, Penelope realizes that her mother’s determined plans for her life are drying up all her good ideas. Then one day her calendar is miraculously blank and she falls through the space into the Realm of Possibility where she makes a new friend, Dill and learns about the Great Moodler who co
Apr 11, 2020 rated it liked it
This is a sweet little book very reminiscent of "The Phantom Tollbooth" by Norton Juster. It's a little bit "Alice in Wonderland" and "Wizard of Oz" with some Roald Dahl sprinkled on top for good measure. There are many good messages such as "make time for yourself" (p.305) and "moodle on (or daydream about) whatever tickles your fancy" (p.224) and anything is possible if you use your imagination (rough paraphrase of pages 212-217). Essentially a little girl's journey to discover what is truly i ...more
Hailey H.
Oct 17, 2020 rated it really liked it
(copied from my blog)

When I first read The Lost Track of Time, my first thoughts were that it is very similar to Norton Juster’s The Phantom Tollbooth. And, humorously enough, Britt gives a nod to Juster in her acknowledgements. But while The Phantom Tollbooth has its characteristic cleverness in several areas, The Lost Track of Time focuses its cleverness in the arenas of time and words. Did you know how many different types of time there are? Also, be on the lookout for Wild Bores.

I do wish t
Jul 20, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy
The Lost Track of Time was a perfect beach read and a fun, unique middle-grade story with an important lesson: cherish your time.

Penelope is an unfortunate young girl whose controlling OCD mother schedules every minute of her day until she mysteriously falls into a hole in her schedule and enters a new realm - the Realm of Possibility. A modern-day Alice in Wonderland mixed with Ronald Dahl like characters, funny puns (the Naughty Woods) and plays on words (Fancies - creatures who need to be ti
Just a clever, fantastical adventure. It's a cavort, a gambol, a rollick of wordplay, an ode to creativity and the joyous possibilities of imagination.

Penelope in the first act is so over scheduled that it made me anxious just reading about it. In a way, I'm deeply sympathetic to Penelope's parents; I headcanon them (esp. the mom) as having grown up poor and worked hard to make their way up in life, and they're just hoping for an easier future and better possibilities for their daughter. I appre
May 04, 2021 rated it really liked it
This was such a fun read! I definitely recommend this for children and teens or even if you're an adult looking for a whimsical world to fall into.

The protagonist, Penelope, is very likeable and she feels very real, in my personal opinion. She is relatable and expresses very realistic feelings towards her mum's constant scheduling of her life.

The time puns were certainly a fun part of the book as well! They were very creative and didn't feel as forced as I'd thought they'd be.

And don't get me st
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Paige Britt is the author of THE LOST TRACK OF TIME, "an exuberant homage to the power of imagination and creative problem-solving" (Publishers Weekly, starred review). She is also the author of WHY AM I ME? illustrated by Sean Qualls and Selina Alko. This beautiful celebration of our humanity and diversity invites readers of all ages to imagine a world where there is no you or me, only we.

Paige g

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These twelve books are so consistently adored, they have become regulars month after month in our data of most popular and most read books on...
132 likes · 49 comments
“I just kept moodling. I came up with hundreds of ideas. Most of them were too small, but I kept at it and after a while I moodled up a few big ones. With some tinkering, I turned those big ideas into real possibilities and from there I created my masterpiece..." -Dill” 3 likes
“You know, dear, sometimes you find what you're looking for, but not what you're expecting" -The Great Moodler” 3 likes
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