It all started because she wanted to get out of the rain. Who could have predicted that the bank she ducked into would be the scene of a robbery and that the only person in it that was nice to her would be shot and killed in front of her eyes. Just bad luck right? For everyone else BUT Zoe. Zoe now has a choice. To leave the past as it is, OR try to change it.
Because she has a special talent, one she discovered when she was 13. She can “playback” time for 23 minutes and can try to change things up to 10 times. After that, whatever happened with her last try is how things go forward. So Zoe has a choice. Does she try to “playback” time and alter what happens to save the nice young man, or does she leave things as is? And if she does go back, she knows there is a very distinct possibility that she won’t make things better – she might make things worse.
23 Minutes by Vivian Vande Velde takes those thousands of situations in life where we ask ourselves, “What if…?” But Zoe has the ability to try out those what ifs. And shows the reader that going back into the past with the best of intensions, even knowing what is going to happen, is messy and doesn’t necessarily turn out as we’d wish.
Highly recommended for mature 6th graders and up due violence. Vande Velde continues to be one of my all time favorite authors and she doesn’t disappoint with this new addition.