Behind the seemingly innocuous facade of St. Mary's Institute of Historical Research, a different kind of academic work is taking place. Just don't call it time travel - these historians investigate major historical events in contemporary time. And they aren't your harmless eccentrics either; a more accurate description, as they ricochet around history, might be unintentional disaster magnets.
The Chronicles of St. Mary's tells the chaotic adventures of Madeleine Maxwell and her compatriots Director Bairstow, Leon Chief Farrell, Mr. Markham and many more as they travel through time, saving St. Mary's Institute (too often by the very seat of their pants) and thwarting time-travelling terrorists, all the while leaving plenty of time for tea.
You think you're having a bad day? Max is trapped in the same deadly sandstorm that buried the 50,000-strong army of the Pharaoh Cambyses II, and she's sharing the only available shelter for miles around with the murdering psychopath who recently kidnapped her and left her adrift in time.
She's no safer at St. Mary's. Tragedy strikes not once but several times, and with no Leon, no Markham, and no Peterson at her side, Max's personal life slowly begins to unravel. From the Egyptian desert to the Battle of Hastings, and from Bayeux Cathedral to the Sack of Constantinople, Max must race through time to save the ones she loves.
"A carnival ride through laughter and tears with a bit of time travel thrown in for spice...readers will be impatient for later instalments." (Publishers Weekly)
"Taylor has written a madcap and very funny hodgepodge of a novel whose pacing and humour is reminiscent of a Simon Pegg-Edgar Wright film." (Booklist)
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Jodi Never Disappoints!
emotional, side-splittingly funny
The way Jody Taylor writes a story that is both incredibly funny yet also exceptionally emotional and at times very difficult to read. Her work satisfies my need for something that both makes me laugh uncontrolably and cry like a baby.
It's hard to choose because there are so many great ones, but the tea party in the grounds is probably my favourite. I don't want to spoil it for anyone. Just read it! Zara's naration is incredible, so that aspect of the series will not disappoint.
without spoiling anything, I really loved the scene where Max is sitting on the stairs and suddenly she is surrounded by almost the entire staff of St Mary's while they all await Leon's return. It's just a beautiful display of solidarity, and written so well. I wish I worked there.
It's so hard to write about this book without giving anything away. Chances are if you read the previous 7 books, you will read it anyway, but if you haven't, then you really need to start from the beginning. Don't start from here as the jumping around in time will really lose you. This series is however one of the most rewarding I have ever read, so give it a try!
The Best yet