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The Time Twister is a novel in the Children of the Red King series by Jenny Nimmo. In the USA the title was amended to Charlie Bone and the Time Twister.

Plot introduction

The Time Twister, a marble-like ball with the power to transport people through time, brings Henry Yewbeam from 1916 to present-day Bloor's Academy. His evil, scheming cousin Ezekiel Bloor, who was responsible for sending him to the future, is still alive, and Charlie Bone must protect Henry and find a way to send him back into the past.

Detailed Plot summary

The plot starts in 1916 with Henry and James Yewbeam talking about their cousin, Ezekiel Bloor. Ezekiel hates Henry for Henry is much smarter than him. Ezekiel rolls a marble towards Henry who is playing Ring Taw, a small ball game. The marble, which is actually the Time Twister sends him forward into time. Ezekiel got the marble, which once belonged to the legendary Red King, from his dying great-aunt Beatrice.

In the present, Charlie Bone gets ready for his first day back at Bloor's Academy after the Christmas holidays. His friend, Benjamin Brown, who lives across the street asks him if he would be able to make a snowman. Charlie refuses as he will be away all week at school. (Bloor's Academy students sleep for the week and come home at the weekends. If they have detention they stay till just after lunch on Saturday.)

When Charlie is walking around the school one day he bumps into a replica of himself who is wearing old-fashioned clothes and a blue cape. That boy happens to be Henry Yewbeam. Blessed (Ezekiel Bloor's ancient dog) spots Charlie and Henry together and rushes to Billy Raven, an albino who spies for the Bloors. When Ezekiel Bloor, who is now 100 years old, is informed that his horrid cousin has appeared he becomes angry. While Henry hides in the Music Tower when Charlie is at his lessons, he is fed by Mr. Pilgrim, the strange piano teacher. When Henry persuades Charlie to help him return to his family in 1916, Charlie agrees but when the cold room door gets stuck with Henry inside Cook takes Henry under her wing. With Cook caring for Henry he was better fed and is provided with modern clothes. One weekend Henry runs off in the building when Cook told him not to. He is captured by Blessed and Billy who later turn him in to Manfred Bloor, head boy. Henry gets to see his 100 year old cousin Ezekiel who later locks him in a dungeon in the ruins.

Once Charlie is informed that Henry has been captured he and his friends set out to find him. Olivia Vertigo finds Henry in the ruin one day locked tightly in a cave. Charlie and his friends with the help of Mr. Onimous devise a plan to rescue Henry. Using the little door behind the Pets' Cafe, Charlie and Fidelio Gunn go through the passage that leads to the ruins behind Bloors' academy. After rescuing Henry they have to leave him in the passage because one of Charlie's aunts and Dr. Bloor have come to the cafe demanding to know where Charlie is. Pretending he was helping them in the kitchen Charlie comes out and goes back home. Henry is curious and goes to the sunshiny room in the ruins. After running in the academy and seeing Mrs.Bloor (or the dark lady of the tower who has broken her arm and can no longer play her violin) who advises Henry to go with her back in time before she broke her arm. Henry is speechless and follows her hand; while running they are spotted by Manfred and Dr. Bloor who chase after them. When Mrs. Bloor goes into the Time Twister Henry remains in the academy when he let go of her cloak. When Manfred sees he thinks Henry has also gone and Henry hears him whisper, 'Mummy'. Later he is rescued and Charlie and Uncle Paton take him to see his younger brother James who is Uncle Paton's father who lives by the sea. Pearl who is Cook's sister is housekeeper there and agrees to watch Henry.

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