As if traveling to a new country in search of her missing mother weren’t difficult enough, Mira has to do it dressed as a boy. In a different century.
A new postcard from her time-traveling mother points Mira to the 16th century Rome. But before she can rescue her mom, she must follow the clues left around the city to find Giordano Bruno, a famous thinker and mathematician, who discovered something so shocking that important Italian officials don’t want it revealed. All the while avoiding the Watchers – time-traveling police who want Mira back in her own time.
It’s another whirlwind adventure for Mira, and this time she is determined to bring her mother out of the past.
Mira’s Diary: Home Sweet Rome by Marissa Moss is book in a fun middle grade series about a girl who learns she can time travel and must help her mother who is stuck in the past trying to make right the future. I quite liked the first book, Lost in Paris, and fully enjoyed this one as well.
Mira receives another note from her lost-in-time mother and she, her father and brother Malcolm are off to Rome. Mira’s not long in Rome before she time travels to the 16th century, meeting painters, cardinals and more (including the Watcher from the last book who is set to stop both Mira and her mother, and Morton, who helps Mira be where she needs to go). Despite the relatively short time between her first experiences with time travel in Paris and now, Mira seems more confident in herself to figure out what her mother wants her to do and try to succeed in that task. It’s a bit different this time, and will take the reader on an interesting ride.
Mira’s father and Malcolm offer support (emotional and research) in her present when she travels back to them, and are very helpful and understanding. Mira is still a fun character, full of determination and strength that makes her suitable for the task of time traveling. She’s getting quicker at thinking on her feet, and isn’t getting too attached to the people she meets in the past. Like in the first book, the secondary characters are there more to highlight historical figures and provide Mira information and a mission to complete. In Home Sweet Rome she spend much of her time with a cardinal Del Monte, the painter Caravaggio and his servant Giovanni, and the man she’s meant to help, Giordano Bruno.
The sketches scattered throughout the book are a wonderful addition to the story, and I continue to be inordinately pleased with the author’s note and bibliography Marissa Moss includes at the back of the book. Mira’s Diary: Home Sweet Rome is a quiet historical mystery that has the reader diving right in to old Rome and the Inquisition. I’m definitely still seeing this as a must-have series for the classroom, and could happily put it into the hands of young readers. Time travel, mystery and history? All three awesome things right there.
e-ARC provided by Sourcebooks Jabberwocky and Netgalley in exchange for my honest review. Thank you!