The Ice Chips and the Stolen Cup
The Ice Chips and the Stolen Cup
Edge didn’t want to admit it, but he’d been dreaming about this trip ever since he’d missed the last one. Travelling through time was Lucas’s escape, his place to hide when life got tough – almost like a secret clubhouse. But for Edge, it was an adventure – it was living history! Each leap helped him learn more about the roots of hockey and the players who’d helped build the game. This was history he could hear, smell, feel – and it was better than any movie, better than any game on a screen.
In The Ice Chips and the Stolen Cup, the fourth book in “The Ice Chips” series, Lucas and his friends, Edge, Swift, and Bond, travel through time to Montreal in 1889, then briefly to Brantford in 1961, and finally, to Ottawa in 1892. At the beginning of the novel, the Ice Chips are involved in an intense semi-final match with the Orangeville Orcas. After winning a close match, the team now faces the notorious Riverton Stars, coached by the wealthy Mr. Blitz. The Riverton Stars are led by bullying twins Beatrice and Jared Blitz, the coach’s children. Lucas and his teammates are very nervous about the finals and decide to take a trip back in time.
Before the quartet even begin, they are faced with several challenges. Scratch, the small ice-resurfacing machine which opens the time travel portal, is broken! As they wait to learn if Scratch can be repaired, they are shocked to see a young girl sliding across the ice, escaping from someone. She drops a large silver bowl before she disappears. The Ice Chips soon realize that they are in possession of Lord Stanley’s Cup which they must return if history is not to be changed! Their time travels take them back to Montreal in 1889 where they meet the mystery girl who is the Governor General’s daughter, Isobel Stanley. For readers, the major questions are whether or not the Ice Chips will be able to return the Cup, and if they will triumph over the Riverton Stars in the championship game.
In this novel about minor league hockey, Roy and Kerry Macgregor created an engaging storyline about hockey history as well as the challenges of a small town team, the Ice Chips. Lucas and his fellow players have finally made the finals of their hockey league. They have worked hard, used their superstitions, and overcome great challenges. When they are faced with their arch-rivals, the Riverton Stars, they must dig deep. In the time travel sequences, the young players go back to the beginnings of Canada’s hockey story when they inadvertently come into possession of the famous Stanley Cup. There are wonderful descriptions of 19th century Ottawa and Rideau Hall.
Roy and Kerry MacGregor continue to write interesting and accessible hockey stories for young readers. The Ice Chips and the Stolen Cup examines many issues, including women’s hockey, time travel, friendship, courage, determination, co-operation, and sportsmanship. The black and white illustrations by Kim Smith are very well-done and add a great deal to the narrative. The diversity and determination represented by the intrepid Ice Chips will definitely engage young readers!
Myra Junyk, who lives in Toronto, Ontario, is a literacy advocate and author.