The Whisper in the Ruins is the third book in Lisa Hendey's Chime Travelers series. The book begins at St. Anne's School with the annual Pet Blessing that occurred every year on the Feast of St. Francis. The next day, while showing up for church cleaning duty, the twins (Patrick and Katie) discover that someone has thrown a brick through one of the stained glass windows. The twins have a theory on who committed the crime, and it is Peter, an overly aggressive boy in their class. Another Saturday when they are cleaning, Patrick gets transported back in time to the year 1205.
Back in time, Patrick meets a boy named Francis. At first, he wondered if it was Pope Francis, but he quickly realizes it's not. Francis give Patrick a tour of his home. He tells him that his parents want to marry him off, but Francis is more interested in a life of poverty and serving God. Also in the past, Francis enlightens Patrick on his call to restore San Damiano. When Patrick is transported back to his own time, he realizes that God is calling for repair of St. Anne's and all churches. He and Katie also come up with a plan to figure out what is actually troubling Peter and figure out how they can help him. I'll leave the rest of the story for you to discover yourself.
This was a very touching book in the Chime Travelers series. Lisa Hendey showed real talent in presenting a real problem with a real solution. This shows great depth for a children's book and is much appreciated. Too often authors dumb down books for children, but Lisa proved you don't need to do this. Her treatment of St. Francis and what he might have been like a boy was also handled well and is a great read for fans of St. Francis. I highly recommend this book.
This book was provided to me for free in exchange for an honest review.