Searles, Rachel. The Lost Planet
January 28th 2014, Feiwel & Friends
Chase wakes up with a wound on the back of his head and no memories, other than the phrase "guide the star". Luckily, he is found by Parker, who lives on the planet Trucon with his android nanny Mina, under the care of Dr. Sylvestri. The boys sneak off in a small space craft to have some fun, but Trucon blows up! Mina hunts them down, but is disabled, and the boys eventually land in the care of Maurus, whose life they have saved but who might have been responsible for blowing up Trucon under the direction of the evil Karsha Van. The boys feel their best bet in seeking help from the Fleet. They encounter a vast variety of aliens and see a good bit of the galaxy while trying to figure out who Chase is, especially after they meet his sister, who says that Chase is dead. This book is action packed, but some of the questions are answered near the end of the book.
Strengths: Lots and lots of action, running about, gadgetry and fighting. Most of the book, except for the last bit, is nonstop action. For readers who want "something to happen", this is great. I appreciated that this was a science fiction space adventure book and not yet another dystopia.
Weaknesses: I get very confused by sci fi and fantasy in general, and this had so much going on that I had a hard time following what was going on. Will students be confused? Hard to tell. I also thought the world building and character development were on the weak side. May have to test this out with my avid sci fi readers to see what they think.
Here is a very odd and random rant/blather about clothing. It occurred to me as I was making a desperate attempt to dress myself this morning (moss green skirt, medium blue sweater, giant dangly butterfly necklace-- why not?) that I needed light beige tights to wear to match my turtleneck. And then I had this horrible flashback to getting ready for school in the second grade.
See how short the skirt is on the girl at left? When I started kindergarten in 1970, I wore skirts that short every single day, even in January. Tights were necessary, and so hard to get into. I would sit at the edge of the bed, my mother would roll them onto my feet, and I'd have to jump up and down to get them on. I was pudgy.
A mere five years later, we were allowed to wear PANTS in the winter. Mind you, it was mainly pants suits(see the lovely mint green number in the catalog. I want it right now!) that my mother made from Stretch-n-Sew Patterns. I had one that was kelly green with hot pink, neon yellow and white Scotty dogs all over it. I could wear the jumper top separately, often with orange tights. The other was orange and black plaid. 1975. Not a pretty time. There is no photgraphic evidence of this, for which I am both grateful and saddened.
Point here? When I was in the 6th grade, in 1976, I was finally allowed to wear flesh colored tights with my white bow blouse with the puffy sleeved t shirt over it, a denim skirt, and denim colored lace up shoes. There is a picture of this somewhere, because I wore it for the class picture. Flesh colored tights meant I was GROWN UP.
This is why people born even five years later don't feel fondly about panty hose. They were not subjects to the horrible ritual of tights. I was never allowed to wear black tights (although I remember purple, acid green, several unfortunate pinks), so I can wear those now without flinching, but beige-- can't do.
But at least I wasn't my brother. He had a plaid leisure suit what he wore white white patent leather shoes and matching belt. And for some reason, the boys I knew frequently wore plaid pants with striped t shirts, or plaid shirts with striped pants. Colors were completely random. Then there was the atrocity that was the shirt with the fake vest over it, sometimes belted in matching fabric. Snazzy.
Just wait, children. In 40 years, you will laugh at red skinny jeans. LAUGH, I tell you!