Return to Titanic (Series)
#1 Time Voyage, #2 Stowaways, #3 An Unsinkable Ship, #4 Overboard
written by Steve Brezenoff
4-book series, children's fiction
published in 2012
Return to Titanic is a set of 4 books about a couple of modern-day 14-year-old kids who are whisked back through time to experience the Titanic's first -- and only -- voyage.
After reading just the first book, I was most definitely "on board" with the plot Brezenoff created! He has interwoven the important facts of the RMS Titanic into a relatable story that kids today will understand and relate to... and they'll even enjoy learning about history this way. In a similar way to the popular Magic Tree House series, two friends, Tucker and Maya, are in a museum warehouse in 2012 one minute... and open their eyes in 1912 the next.
In Book #1, Time Voyage, Tucker and Maya arrive on board Titanic, interact with other passengers and learn true facts about the giant ship... even meeting important people who were aboard. The element of time travel used in the book will intrigue young readers, and they'll be gaining historical knowledge without even realizing it.
Book #2, Stowaways, picks up where the first left off... the 2nd day of Spring Break. All Maya and Tucker want to do is get the chance to visit the Titanic again. I enjoyed how Book #2 shows young readers how large the ship really was, by telling of Maya and Tucker's adventure on board. It also accurately captures the essence of 1912 finery and fashion, and then comparing it to how the 3rd-class passengers were poorly treated and restricted. The author did such a good job with this series by showcasing some of the important historical figures concerning the Titanic's story.
In Book #3, An Unsinkable Ship, Tucker and Maya, the two brave friends, want to visit the sinking ship again, in an effort to save the life of their new friend, Liam, whose family is aboard. Along the way, readers will learn more details about the interesting history of the giant ship, including some of the famous passengers aboard, like the millionaire John Jacob Astor and his wife. Particulars about the segregation of different classes of passengers are revealed too.
Book #4, Overboard, This last book chronicled the actual sinking of the ship well. So many accurate facts were included about the lifeboats, rescue and the final disembarkation. I love the futuristic twist these books have, because the modern-day kids go back in time 100 years to the time of Titanic's maiden voyage (I think this is what really sells the history to youngsters).
Steve Brezenoff has written a great account of the epic shipwreck, fitting in lots of details that young readers will latch onto and remember about the RMS Titanic. Overall, a very cool book series that kids will enjoy learning from (whether they realize it or not!).
The series is written for a 3rd grade reading level, although slightly older readers would probably enjoy breezing through the series too (like myself, obviously). Each book is only about 100 pages long. Little children could easily enjoy this as a read-aloud with parents too, because there are so many pages with cool illustrations to look at. The artwork certainly added some great features to the story.
Recommended for ages 8-11.
These books are a good read, packed with fun facts! Definitely a great series!