What if you could see your future Fourteen year old Abbey Sinclair likes to spend her afternoons in the physics lab learning about momentum and gravitational pull But her practical scientific mind is put to the test when her older brother, Simon, discovers a mysterious path of stones that allows them, along with Abbey s twin, Caleb, to travel back and forth between their world and what appears to bethe future Unfortunately, they re not the only ones who know about the stones, and they soon realize their lives are in danger from a man known only as Mantis Abbey, Caleb, and Simon must follow a twisting trail of clues that will lead them from their autistic neighbor, Mark, to a strange professor who claims to know the rules of the stones, and to multiple futures some of whose inhabitants don t want to stay put It will take all of Abbey s analytical skills to unravel the secrets of the stones, uncover the threads that tie the futures together, thwart Mantis s plan, and, most importantly, keep her family alive now and in the future A Pair of Docks is an action adventure for kids and adults that explores Einstein s Theory of Relativity, parallel universes, time travel and the boundary between science and magic It is the first novel in the Derivatives of Displacement series Lovers of fantasy and science fiction will find plenty to like in A Pair of Docks


10 thoughts on “A Pair of Docks

  1. Renee Renee says:

    Abbey Sinclair is no ordinary teenaged girl This 14 year old genius has an IQ of 165 yikes and her brain thinks in terms of equations, probabilities, statistics, and scientific truths But when she and her brothers discover a portal to parallel universes crossing the boundaries of space and time, all that she has learned about the Derivatives of Displacement will be challenged as science and witchcraft collide in this fantastic thriller.Jennifer Ellis wastes no time diving into the action W Abbey Sinclair is no ordinary teenaged girl This 14 year old genius has an IQ of 165 yikes and her brain thinks in terms of equations, probabilities, statistics, and scientific truths But when she and her brothers discover a portal to parallel universes crossing the boundaries of space and time, all that she has learned about the Derivatives of Displacement will be challenged as science and witchcraft collide in this fantastic thriller.Jennifer Ellis wastes no time diving into the action When Abbey s older brother Simon mysteriously disappears in the forest, she and her gregarious twin Caleb stumble upon magical stones which transport them to the future where Simon is a famous computer tech genius This is just the beginning of a wonderfully complex story that will see the threesome cross into a number of other worlds as well as the ominous Nowhere.As the Sinclair children navigate through these worlds and try to understand how the stones work, they soon learn that there are others who know of the stones First, there is the mysterious and powerful Mantis whose emails to Flykid hacked by Simon hint at a sinister plan that will place one of the Sinclair children in danger The Sinclair s next door neighbors, Mrs Forrester and her son Mark who falls within the spectrum of autism, Asperger Syndrome , also know of the stones and are prepared to intervene to protect the future The children discover Dr Ford who is also deeply embroiled in the mystery of the stones but who has his own agenda Even future Caleb figures into how events unfold The character development in this story is absolutely stellar with hints dropped strategically by Ellis to keep the reader guessing as to each character s motivation Kudos to the author for how Asperger s was depicted with compassion in the story.Some books transport me to my inner geeky 12 year old That 12 year old who wantedthan just fairies, princesses, mysteries, and magic That 12 year old who wanted to be challenged by a complex plot exploring ideas that are highly conceptual but are nonetheless plausible where scientific theory collides with the supernatural or metaphysical and which features richly developed characters who create dissonance as both good and evil co exist within their psyches A Pair of Docks is such a book Look at the title I mean, really look Say it out loud a few times So, so clever as is this marvelous book My Bottom Line A Pair of Docks by Jennifer Ellis is a thrilling page turner that features a fusion of science fiction and fantasy genres The writing is absolutely stellar the character development is rich and the plot twists and turns keep the reader guessing until the end, which features a cliffhanger that will leave you wantingI highly recommend this fantastic book to children looking for aintricate plot, ages 10I received this book free of charge from the author in exchange for my honest opinion All opinions expressed are my own.


  2. Jemima Pett Jemima Pett says:

    Sometimes when I m reading I am torn between what I think and what would my 14 year old self think This is one of those books My adult self is pleased to find a book that is full of both correct and well imagined science, an enthusiastic young female scientist, and a great and unusual adventure I wonder how 12 year olds will react to Mark, who plays an important role and is delightfully displayed with all his autistic quirks and fixations I think my 14 year old self will be wrapped up in the Sometimes when I m reading I am torn between what I think and what would my 14 year old self think This is one of those books My adult self is pleased to find a book that is full of both correct and well imagined science, an enthusiastic young female scientist, and a great and unusual adventure I wonder how 12 year olds will react to Mark, who plays an important role and is delightfully displayed with all his autistic quirks and fixations I think my 14 year old self will be wrapped up in the book, irritated by too much detail, but identify with Abbey for most of the time Simon and Caleb, her brothers, are cool and well characterised, her mum and dad are largely absent due to her mum fighting an election campaign there s a twist on the dead parent syndrome so absent that when her mum referred to Peter I had no idea she meant her husband for a few paragraphs.The detail involved in the descriptions of the first two time travel trips irritated me since it left little room for the imagination, although to me the where was obvious I loved the whole premise of the stones until it came to the witchcraft element, which I felt jarred with the scientific aspect of Abbey s story I can see that the author is building this up for the next in the series, but I would rather she had found another way of dealing with the gathering conflict than falling back on the trope of destiny and birthright However the excitement of the adventure, the originality of the time travel methods, and the twists and turns involving different timelines as well as mysterious characters makes the story fascinating and compelling.I think this book will find a big audience among boys and girls who enjoy science and want a bright hero or heroine years ahead of her class but still coping in a regular school It will also find an audience among the many adults who enjoy clean time travel books, not least because of the mystery and misdirection involved with some of the terminology I m struggling to decide whether this book is good or great Since I m not sure, it ll have to get 4 stars rather than 5, but I d like to give it 4.5


  3. TheMadHatter TheMadHatter says:

    There are only a few reviews for this book and most of them start with the author gave me a free copy of this book to review The other reviews sound suspiciously like they are friends of the author.Let me start by saying I don t know the author I was definitely not given a free copy of the book by the author I think my reviews are too honest to get books from authors P so I guess I am independent With that being said, each person is different so someone may love a book I don t This There are only a few reviews for this book and most of them start with the author gave me a free copy of this book to review The other reviews sound suspiciously like they are friends of the author.Let me start by saying I don t know the author I was definitely not given a free copy of the book by the author I think my reviews are too honest to get books from authors P so I guess I am independent With that being said, each person is different so someone may love a book I don t This is purely my honest view of the book.I was actually given this book as a gift from a wonderful friend Thanks Cherie who read the blurb and thought it was up my alley with the physics and the time travel However, it was very hit and miss for me.What worked Love the premise The actual story and idea is very clever andimportantly very novel I did get to the end of the book and start to wonder about book 2 where as the first half of the book all I could think about was when it would be over If the author had just let the idea carry the book it would have been great but we will get to that soon Love the title It is a really clever play on words that comes full circle in its meaning Really loved it It was a polished book in terms of typos etc I think I only picked one towards the end.What didn t work The author tried too hard It is that simple There is LOTS and LOTS of telling very little showing and there are these random textbook definitions that BREAK the flow of the story of base level physics terms that are suppose to make you go Oh wow Abbey must be really smart because she is thinking about Newton s Laws of Motion but in reality you whack your head against the table going SHOW, NOT TELL All it really does is make the reader feel frustrated that the author has to be so bloody obvious and on really obvious physics laws I get the need to explain complex laws but seriously if someone is reading the book who doesn t get inertia, then chucking in a definition is not going to help them Subtlety Be clever Not in your face Pretty much anything to do with Abbey I hate to say it, but the author tried WAY too hard to make her seem intellectual that it just came out plain annoying The author was way too obvious in the physics references and in places it basically read like someone was quoting random phrases from a senior school physics text that did NOT fit in with the sentence I love physics However, to me it was badly integrated into the story It kept taking me out of the story I will give you some examples to highlight how bad some of this was there were a lotbut I only started bookmarking them to try to divert myself from throwing the book Abbey s legs felt link an undulating sine curve, not the slightest bit useful if they had to run Sit down and strap yourself in, you nimrod, or your head will slam against the wall and I ll have to deliver your brains home to Mum A body experiencing a force undergoes acceleration Abbey almost giggled as Caleb decided to accelerate to his seat He was so big, and he d been beating the window the day before He was a body at rest right now, but his potential energy was high The digital numbers on her watch read 4 46 why not just write Her watch read 4 46 When the bus stopped, Simon didn t reach up fast enough and Mark flew forward and hit the seat ahead of them A body in motion stays in motion Overall When the author was subtle e.g., ALICE, Camel, Paradox it was great and clever and enjoyable When she inserted random definitions or explained the obvious then in just ruined any hope of me loving this book So 3 stars it is Lots of potential if the author can trust that the reader has a brain and will get the concepts and if they don t and are interested then they will look them up themselves


  4. Erth Erth says:

    This was a great paradox What a great fast read and a way to travel time without war, blood, aliens or any paranormal type beings I was very surprised with the way the writer wrote about this in and out of time book.Abby, Simon and Caleb, the three main characters, are young teens The story is a mystery time travel story I would definitely recommend this book to a teen or adult that likes this genre.


  5. Connie Connie says:

    I received a free e book edition of this novel in exchange for a review This does not in any way influence my opinion of this book As a bookseller, it is important to me that my reviews are completely honest, as many of my customers have access to my reviews A Pair of Docks is an excellent sci fi read for ages 9 to 99 It is completely appropriate for children, containing no material or language that parents would object to, yet compelling to read as an adult The story is well written, wi I received a free e book edition of this novel in exchange for a review This does not in any way influence my opinion of this book As a bookseller, it is important to me that my reviews are completely honest, as many of my customers have access to my reviews A Pair of Docks is an excellent sci fi read for ages 9 to 99 It is completely appropriate for children, containing no material or language that parents would object to, yet compelling to read as an adult The story is well written, with a great plot and cast of characters I like that the narrator, 14 year old Abbey Sinclair, is a strong young female Indeed, all of the children in the book, including Abbey s autistic neighbor Mark, are described in sufficient detail that I could identify somewhat with each of them It is their personality traits rather than their physical attributes that are so well portrayed For me, this is the most important aspect of a character The adults in the novel are a bit of a mystery to the children, and are therefore equally so to the reader As the novel progresses, the reader discoversabout them, but even at the end, it is difficult to know who among them can be trusted That none of them understands the rules of traveling into potential futures demonstrates that adults don t always have all the answers The plot is extremely imaginative and quick paced Combining physics and magic, it explores the possibility of alternate universes and theories of how time works It brought me back to my days as a child reading Madeleine L Engle s series beginning with A Wrinkle in Time That I compare Jennifer Ellis with this well known recipient of the John Newbery Medal is no coincidence I believe that A Pair of Docks is equally worthy of such an honor


  6. S.W. S.W. says:

    This one is for young readers 9 12 who like mystery, magic and time travel A Pair of Docks is a time travel adventure centred around a group of kids the Sinclair siblings who stumble upon a magical portal, which leads them to an unimaginable place That place just happens to be right where they started, but in a different time The story is focussed on the main characters the kids , with parents etc secondary to the main plot Their mom is running for Mayor and her story is quietly told in t This one is for young readers 9 12 who like mystery, magic and time travel A Pair of Docks is a time travel adventure centred around a group of kids the Sinclair siblings who stumble upon a magical portal, which leads them to an unimaginable place That place just happens to be right where they started, but in a different time The story is focussed on the main characters the kids , with parents etc secondary to the main plot Their mom is running for Mayor and her story is quietly told in the background, but she is still an important part of the overall story.After Simon comes into possession of a mysterious email, it sets the Sinclair kids off on a mission to get to the bottom of its purpose When a second email arrives, it clearly shows something fishy is going on, and there is no stopping their thirst to solve the mystery They soon discover that a neighbour with autism, Mark, may hold the vital clue to the truth behind the portal He definitely knows something, but knowing how to and who to share it with is one of the challenges tackled in the plot.Abbey Simon s sister is a highly intelligent girl who constantly thinks in snippets of scientific information IMO, anyone who really has such highly technical thoughts for every single thing they encounter should take some time off and lay down and rest I found Abbey a bit of a struggle to connect with, so I wonder what kids in the target audience would think of her never ending banter of technical scientific jargon.Another interesting part of the story was that the time travel element involved random time hopping This meant that the characters had no control over where when they went But they were able to witness their potential futures, not necessarily their real futures As with most time travel books, this one also reinforces my own belief, that every single decision we make impacts our own future, and that of everyone around us The future is never really set until it has happened.As the tale progresses, it takes a turn that I really didn t see coming A family history linked to a particular lineage is revealed, and the reasons that the siblings have stumbled upon the magical portal are explained.In a nutshellA Pair of Docks is the tale of a family legacy that until now has been hidden from the kids There are rules to be followed and some old foes to face off Recommended for young readers 9 12 who like mystery, magic and time travel.Check out my other reviews at www.swlothian.com Note I don t claim to be a pro reviewer, I am a reader My reviews are based on my personal thoughts around the story that the book is trying to tell I try to focus on the story which is the reason I read rather than dissect the book and pass comment on typos, writing style or structure.


  7. Kate Matson Kate Matson says:

    I received a free, digital copy of this title in exchange for an honest review This does not change my opinion at all.Elements I liked The writing style really kept you up to date on the story, and it helped you focus on what was happening I truly felt like I was a part of the story I have never experienced anything like the storyline in this book But, I really liked it It was interesting and kept my attention Towards the ending, I just stopped guessing what was going to happen, and just I received a free, digital copy of this title in exchange for an honest review This does not change my opinion at all.Elements I liked The writing style really kept you up to date on the story, and it helped you focus on what was happening I truly felt like I was a part of the story I have never experienced anything like the storyline in this book But, I really liked it It was interesting and kept my attention Towards the ending, I just stopped guessing what was going to happen, and just read It was a surprise on every page I thought that the ending was the highlight of the book It was what made it REALLY deserve 4 stars Also, I LOVE this cover It is so beautiful I recommend this awesome book to everyone.What I didn t like The first half was fairly slow I had to stick with it and wait till the second half for any action to happen So, just a warning, the first half is boring


  8. Heidi Heidi says:

    I received this book from Jennifer Ellis in exchange for a fair review It starts out a little slow but takes a hold on you quickly By the middle of the book I was having a hard time putting it down I think it starts off a little slow so that you really get to understand the three main characters It is really hard to figure out where Jennifer Ellis is leading with you with her story right up until the surprises at the very end She really reels you in and keeps you guessing throughout the boo I received this book from Jennifer Ellis in exchange for a fair review It starts out a little slow but takes a hold on you quickly By the middle of the book I was having a hard time putting it down I think it starts off a little slow so that you really get to understand the three main characters It is really hard to figure out where Jennifer Ellis is leading with you with her story right up until the surprises at the very end She really reels you in and keeps you guessing throughout the book and her plays on words are great I love sci fi paranormal type books, and this tale is definitely in that genre with time travel and witches I have seen that it is compared to A Wrinkle in Time, and I could agree with that


  9. Tara Tara says:

    If you hadn t figured it out from the name of my blog, I m a little bit of a math geek Just a little bit, though I m smart enough to be interested, but not quite smart enough to handle advanced concepts Maybe I could have before I had kids and my ability to think was replaced by the ability to change a diaper with one hand while refilling a sippy cup with the other all while singing Twinkle Twinkle Little Star twenty times in a row I actually double majored in elementary education math If you hadn t figured it out from the name of my blog, I m a little bit of a math geek Just a little bit, though I m smart enough to be interested, but not quite smart enough to handle advanced concepts Maybe I could have before I had kids and my ability to think was replaced by the ability to change a diaper with one hand while refilling a sippy cup with the other all while singing Twinkle Twinkle Little Star twenty times in a row I actually double majored in elementary education math and language arts in college, so a book with math and science is right up my alley A Pair of Docks is a middle grade sci fi adventure, the first novel in the Derivatives of Displacement series Abbey is a 14 year old math and science genius as in, really a genius she has a 165 IQ She has a twin brother, Caleb, who s as gregarious as Abbey is bookish, and an older brother named Simon who s a computer whiz Another important character in the story is Mark Forrester, the children s adult neighbor Mark has Asperger s and is an expert on coastlines He s also somehow involved in the odd happenings that the children find themselves in the midst of starting with some stones in the forest that cause Simon to disappear when he touches them As it turns out, those stones transport Simon and his siblings to another world the children aren t sure at first if they re in a parallel universe or if they ve jumped into the future, and I ll let you read the story yourself to discover exactly where when the stones took them I really enjoyed Ellis ability to portray her characters realistically, in particular Mark as the mom of two children on the autism spectrum, Ellis seems to havethan a basic understanding of ASD and created a character on the spectrum who isn t just a stereotype, and who is critical to the storyline Ellis worldbuilding is also top notch all of the worlds she created.As an adult, I very much enjoyed this story Jennifer Ellis doesn t write down just because this is considered a middle grade story the writing is high quality and intricate enough to keep a reader interested, from pre teens who enjoy trickier plots all the way up to adults like me There are heavier science concepts described in the story Abbey talks about chemistry and physics and in fact orders her personal world using her scientific knowledge , but you don t have to have a deep scientific understanding to appreciate the story you just have to know that the topics are important to Abbey If you read and loved Madeline L Engle s A Wrinkle in Time or have a child of your own who s a fan then this is a must read I received an ecopy of this book in exchange for my honest review all opinions are my own


  10. Rebecca Douglass Rebecca Douglass says:

    First, this is an engaging read that moves along at a fast pace and keep the reader turning pages It is well written and thoroughly edited, and the plot and the world the author creates both hang together well That said, I have a couple of issues with the book.My first problem is not necessarily a flaw the book I share Abbey s discomfort with the idea that witchcraft could be real To put it another way, I don t like suggestions that the laws of math and physics might not hold for everyone in First, this is an engaging read that moves along at a fast pace and keep the reader turning pages It is well written and thoroughly edited, and the plot and the world the author creates both hang together well That said, I have a couple of issues with the book.My first problem is not necessarily a flaw the book I share Abbey s discomfort with the idea that witchcraft could be real To put it another way, I don t like suggestions that the laws of math and physics might not hold for everyone in an otherwise real world This means that the whole premise of the book that the stones work because witches made them and witchcraft is real itches me a bit It does the same to Abbey I think that s part of the point of the book she has to figure out how to deal with her loss of her rational defenses But I am bothered by this in a way that purely magical worlds don t bug me, because in a way it feels like denying science.My second issue has to do with Mark, the autistic neighbor It s a matter of labels the book refers to him as having Asperger s Syndrome, but his level of functioning feels to melike actual autism, especially in an adult I don t mind the way Mark is portrayed, I just wish the distinction between autism and Asperger s were a little clearer Aside from those two quibbles which really don t deserve the amount of space I gave them , this was an engaging book with a strong element of mystery and just the right amount of peril, I think, for middle grade students.Recommendation Perfect for lovers of time travel and those not bothered by fuzzy lines between reality and fantasy My experience which is not extensive, but there is a fair bit of Asperger s in our family, manifested in a variety of ways suggests that people with Asperger s function a bit better than that, especially by adulthood My brother feels his sons run about 2 4 years behind their age, emotionally In their 20s now, they deal with their obsessions and fears in a fairly mature way, so that though you can tell, it s not debilitating Mark s autism is pretty debilitating, though the depiction of him is not unkind It just seems to me to match autism better than Asperger s I must admit that clearly the American Psychological Association also wishes it were clearer in their latest DSM, they rolled the two into one, to the immense annoyance, not to say confusion, of parents of kids with either issue Presumably they wouldn t have done this if it weren t often hard to draw the line between the two