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Thirteen-year old James awakens in the night to discover things are no longer as they should be and he is now with the Greeks at Troy, 8,000 years ago. His only connection to home is an old watch, presented to him by his grandfather on his deathbed, which allows him to travel back in time with one mission: to save history.
He helps Odysseus, a Greek commander, on a scouting mission and they establish a close bond, with parallels to his aspiring relationship with his own dad, while James is a surrogate for the son Odysseus has not seen since he left home nine years ago.
James is confronted by good and evil within the Greek camp and observes the differing rights and roles of men and women seen through his relationship with a young serving girl who seems to know more than she should. In observing the similarities and contrasts with the modern age he recognises that little has changed.
James is able to draw upon his knowledge of history to help Odysseus make the right choices including constructing the wooden horse that finally allows the Greeks to overcome Troy. In victory he is confronted by the harsh reality that the winner really does take all and the parallels with catastrophic events in the modern age.
James turns down Odysseus’ plea to return home with him; he knows that no one who travels with him will make it back. He arranges for the serving girl to travel with Nestor, the only one he knows returns safely to his kingdom despite the absence.
Back home he wonders if it was a dream but then remembers his grandfather’s words which herald further adventure and the beginning of a series of books where James travels back in time to take on other challenges, to make a difference and save history.
An epilogue provides historical context and, as well as referring to events that came afterwards, challenges the reader on how much of the story may in fact be true.Read sample chapter