Combine one troubled boy with his concerned prep school teacher. Stir in a pinch of quantum physics, add Italian Renaissance political intrigue, and serve piping hot with Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, Machiavelli, the Medicis, and a Borgia Pope on the side. That is the perfect recipe for a time travel adventure crackling with historical detail.
A windswept, snowy day has shut down all movement on or off Block Island. It is the final day of classes before the winter break at the prestigious Block Island Academy High School. Prester Charles John is lecturing his class on the Italian Renaissance, and is displaying a set of twin daggers once belonging to Lorenzo de Medici. During the lecture, an angry young student, Kirk Renzo, grabs one of the daggers and runs away. The boy's footprints lead through pristine snow to a 500-year-old tree. Prester gives chase, but at the tree the footprints end. The boy and the dagger have vanished.
Suspicion over the boy's unexplained disappearance falls hard upon Prester John. Ostracized by his friends and colleagues, Prester's life is turned upside down. But then Prester meets a physicist who theorizes that the boy has slipped into a parallel universe and been transported to 15th-century Italy. Indeed, Kirk Renzo has finally found his niche, his knowledge of the modern world serving to propel him to the level of prince in Renaissance Florence. But there are unseen dangers around every turn with political rivalries boiling over. Thus begins an adventure sending Prester John back in time where he will encounter numerous Renaissance notables as he searches for his lost student.