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Author: Kirby, Matthew J.
Book one: The Earth is in the grip of a new Ice Age, and when twelve-year-old Eleanor's scientist mother disappears in the Arctic, Eleanor sets off on a dangerous journey to find her--and uncovers a mystery, a crime, and evidence that Earth has been visited by extraterrestrials.
Dark Gravity Sequence, Bk. 1
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: MG
Reading Level: 4.80
Points: 9.0 Quiz: 176403
Kirkus Reviews (-) (02/15/15)
School Library Journal (02/01/15)
Booklist (+) (03/15/15)
The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (A) (06/15)
Full Text Reviews:
School Library Journal - 02/01/2015 Gr 4–7—In the first of this new sci-fi series, the northern part of the world is enveloped in the Freeze, a new ice age that is steadily creeping southward. Twelve-year-old "devilishly clever" Eleanor Perry is safe in relatively warmer Phoenix, AZ. While hoards of northern refugees flood into the city and are housed in buildings plagued by crime, plumbing issues, and power outages, she lives comfortably in the suburbs with her geologist mother and uncle. Currently, her mom is in the Arctic, exploring the frigid ice sheet for a nonprofit organization. Eleanor grows concerned when she receives a cryptic message from her mom, which includes mysterious files from G.E.T., the monolithic and suspicious energy corporation headed by the equally untrustworthy Dr. Skinner. She learns that her mother has gone missing and determinedly stows away on a plane bound for the Arctic. Upon arrival, Eleanor discovers that G.E.T. and Dr. Skinner control everything involving the exploration. Eleanor doesn't trust the doctor's motives and she secretly sets out to find her mom. What she discovers will surprise her—and readers. This is an exciting, page-turning tale. Middle grade readers will be compelled by Eleanor's daredevil adventure to find her mom and thrilled as she unearths some startling secrets. VERDICT While the scientific descriptions may be confusing at times, intrepid readers will be rewarded with an action-packed, intriguing story.—Diane McCabe, John Muir Elementary, Santa Monica, CA - Copyright 2015 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.
Booklist - 03/15/2015 *Starred Review* It’s a new Ice Age on earth, and ever since the glaciers have moved south, refugees have been pouring into warmer climates, which are often just as cold as the rest of the world. Eleanor lives in ever-more-crowded Phoenix with her uncle, while her mother, a climatologist working for a nonprofit energy company, is in the Arctic trying to find new energy resources to help humankind survive against the predatory practices of a for-profit behemoth, the Global Energy Trust. When she disappears, right after sending Eleanor a cryptic series of messages and numbers with the directive to keep the information safe, Eleanor knows something serious is going on, and she packs up her survival gear and hitches a ride on a cargo plane headed to Barrow, Alaska. With the assistance of the plucky pilot, Eleanor relies on her determination, resourcefulness, and intelligence to help her mother and uncover the secret about the earth’s climate crisis. The ripped-from-the-headlines elements of global climate change and rising energy prices will pique the interest of many readers, and the thrilling pace and compelling characters will likely keep them flipping the pages into the wee hours of the morning. An exciting, thought-provoking adventure. - Copyright 2015 Booklist.
Bulletin for the Center... - 06/01/2015 The Earth has entered a new ice age in this novel set in the near future, and Eleanor’s mother is a key scientist trying to find ways humans can survive. When Eleanor’s mom goes missing in the Arctic, Eleanor manages to get herself from Arizona all the way to the Arctic, where she flings herself headlong into conspiracies, blizzards, and danger to singlehandedly save her mother. Luckily, she gathers a few allies who spot her determination, and together they face a mega-company with a sneaky CEO, discover a secret Paleolithic civilization, and shut down an ancient extraterrestrial machine that, along with other machines around the world, has been causing the ice age problems. Eleanor is certainly plucky, and her fierce determination to save her beloved mother will resonate with readers. Unfortunately, her tendency to frequently teeter on the brink of getting killed because she won’t plan sufficiently and the necessity of her then being saved repeatedly wear thin quickly. In addition, the science is so baffling, even before the aliens come along, that readers will likely be pulled out of the story as they try to make sense of it. Even with those concerns, however, there may be enough excitement and quick-paced danger to keep readers intrigued throughout this volume and for subsequent entries in the series. AS - Copyright 2015 The Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois.