Three for Thursdays: Light-hearted Science Fiction Series for Young Readers
Posted by Stephanie Whelan
I’m bringing back Three for Thursdays because I have a huge backlog of books I’m not going to have time to review fully with the reading crunch I’m currently in. These will be bite-sized blurb reviews of books that I don’t have the capacity for writing a fully fleshed out review but would like my readers to know about. This week’s three are all 2014 titles with a light-hearted approach to science-fiction.
Zorgoochi Intergalactic Pizza: Delivery of Doom written and illustrated by Dan Yaccarino (Feiwel & Friends, Expected Publication, September, 2014)
Veteran author of the silly and unexpected (including several Science Fiction picture books), Dan Yaccarino turns his attention to the serious subject of pizza delivery. Epic pizza deliver. We’re talking space operatics of the finest kind–villains, quests, anchovies and giant mushrooms with a vendetta. Our young protagonist is the newest in a long line of family to take on the role of pizza delivery boy. It won’t be easy! And with their rival pizza delivery chain busy making life even harder, our hero’s got his work cut out for him! Fun, funny, with a galactic sized love of pizza!
This is not actually the only story out there about off the planet pizza delivery, but it may be the only series! Due out in September this new series is likely to please those who like their SciFi goofy and their pizza’s with extra cheese. It may be a bit heavy on the pizza silliness for some, but it’s a great bit of over-the-top science fiction adventure. Ages 9-12.
Space Taxi: Archie Takes Flight by Wendy Mass and Michael Brawer, illustrated by Elise Gravel (Little, Brown Books for Young Readers, April 2014)
Eight-year-old Archie Morningstar is finally getting to ride with his dad in his taxi for Take Your Kid to Work Day. Or in Archie’s case, midnight, because that’s when his father starts his shift. But Archie is in for a surprise, because his dad’s not your ordinary taxi driver, and his next fare isn’t a few miles away . . . it’s not even on Earth! Archie’s dad drives a space taxi, and Archie finds himself in for a ride of his young lifetime through the universe as his dad’s copilot. Strange cats, evil masterminds and tricky wormholes will all be a part of his night!
This is a funny new series for the young chapter book reader–perfect for those readers in first and second grade who are just starting chapter books and will love the chance to read something out of this world. It’s wonderful to see a new influx of science fiction for these readers–and I can only hope it continues! This one’s directed at the youngest audience of the three choices for this week. Older readers may find my other selections a bit more to their taste, but this is a great intro for new science fiction readers just getting their feet wet in the genre. Ages 6-8.
Frank Einstein and the Antimatter Motor by Jon Scieszka, illustrated by Brian Biggs (Amulet, August 2014)
For our third and final series, we have a young reader novel that makes me just a bit happier with the science in science fiction. While the other two tales in this set are more space opera and aliens, this story is about inventors and science! Frank Einstein is a kid with a talent for inventing–although some of his inventions are decidedly odd. When an experiment into artificial intelligence (involving many repurposed machines and a bit of lightning) produces two robots with minds of their own , Frank finds himself with a bizarre pair of lab partners. But Klink and Klank may be vital in helping Frank invent something that will allow him to win the science competition and beat out his arch-nemesis and rival, T. Edison!
Wacky adventure, humor and some real science weave together to create an entertaining series for young and reluctant readers. This one’s a lot of fun–even as an adult reader I found myself enjoying the humor, and that’s rather rare for goofy science fiction. John Scieszka’s got a great new series here. Ages 6-12.
About Stephanie WhelanI'm a children's librarian with a life-long love of all things science fiction and fantasy.
Posted on August 21, 2014, in General Posts, Lists, Reviews, Three for Thursdays and tagged Aliens, Authors, Books, Children's Literature, Lists, literature, MG Books, Middle-Grade Fiction, Reading, reviews, Science, Science Fiction, series, SF. Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.