Wednesday, May 10, 2023

Epic Ellisons: Cosmos Camp

Giles, Lamar. Epic Ellisons: Cosmos Camp
May 9, 2023 by Versify
E ARC provided by Edelweiss Plus

This companion volume to The Legendary Alston Boys focuses on Wiki and Leen, who appear in that story as the Alston Brothers rivals. Leen is super excited to go to Cosmos Camp for the summer, and Wiki is thrilled that she will finally get some time alone, when she doesn't have to clean up after her twin or deal with her drama. Sadly, however, a heavily pregnant Anna, who is from Logan County and married to the very rich Petey Thunkle, gives Wiki a scholarship to the camp, and the twins' parents think it is great that both of them can spend a summer there. Anna has a task for the two-- Petey has gone missing, and she wants the twins to find him. The two settle into the camp, under the tutelage of Dr. Antoinette Burr and her two robot assistants, Sam and Ralph, for four weeks. They meet the other campers, and start to work on their prototypes for space shuttles while trying to investigate Petey's whereabouts. There are secrets that start to emerge; the Ellison family farm is in danger, Dr. Burr is not working for the camp of her own free will, and there's an alternate reality where Thunkle Tech doesn't control all of the smart phones and internet services and Petey isn't rich. Wiki can sense this past, and it gives her headaches. She meets Dr. Burr's son, Kelvin, who can also sense this past, and the children have to work to figure out what in the timeline changed. They've been though something similar with Otto and Sheed Ellison, and there's just as much at stake with Petey's realities, and just as many time travel and scientific connections for the Ellisons to figure out. Will they be able to retrieve Petey before Anna's baby arrives?
Strengths: Readers who have wondered what happened with Wiki and Leen, who appear often in the Alston Brothers books, will be glad to see these sisters showcased. Wiki has a photographic memory, and the girls generally get along quite well, even though they irritate each other occasionally. The idea of a space camp is a good one, even though it is more of a cover for Petey's disappearance than anything else. Alternative realities are fun, and the present that the twins are stuck in is rife with ThunkleGram, ThunklePhones, TunkleTube, and even a Thupotle restaurant! 
Weaknesses: Like any good time travel book, this story made my brain hurt a little bit. The cover looks a bit younger than I would like, but all covers are embracing this more cartoon style lately. 
What I really think: This is a good choice for readers Lee's Winston Chu and the Whimsies or Sedita's Pathfinders series. 

Ms. Yingling

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