A Problematic Paradox

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Ages 9-12
3
Free sample

Guardians of the Galaxy meets The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy in this wild, warm-hearted, and hilarious sci-fi debut about a brainy young girl who is recruited for a very special boarding school.

"It's like Harry Potter, but with science instead of magic. Nikola is exactly the smart female protagonist that the sci-fi genre needs." --HelloGiggles


Nikola Kross has given up on living in harmony with classmates and exasperated teachers: she prefers dabbling in experimental chemistry to fitting in. But when her life is axially inverted by a gang of extraterrestrials who kidnap her dad and attempt to recruit her into their service, she discovers he's been keeping a world of secrets from her--including the school for geniuses where she's sent for refuge, a place where classes like Practical Quantum Mechanics are the norm and where students use wormholes to commute to class. For Nikola, the hard part isn't school, it's making friends, especially when the student body isn't (entirely) human. But the most puzzling paradox of all is Nikola herself, who has certain abilities that no one understands--abilities that put her whole school in greater danger than she could have imagined.

*"A glorious cacophony of wildly inventive gadgets, gags, and action." --Kirkus Reviews, starred review

*"An amazing and often hilarious world that feels like a blend of A Series of Unfortunate Events and Harry Potter, but with futuristic inventions rather than magic." --School Library Connection, starred review

"Smart, energetic, and original . . . Readers will willingly jump with Nikola into the nearest wormhole and next adventure." --School Library Journal
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About the author

Eliot Sappingfield was last seen wearing a blue shirt and khaki pants in the vicinity of his home in Missouri. He is known to appreciate stories, science, and various other geeky things. He may or may not be accompanied by his wife, his two daughters (when they don't have anything better to do), or a goofy basset hound. He is considered unarmed and not terribly dangerous. This is his first novel.
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4.3
3 total
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Additional Information

Publisher
Penguin
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Published on
Jan 23, 2018
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Pages
352
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ISBN
9781524738464
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Language
English
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Genres
Juvenile Fiction / Humorous Stories
Juvenile Fiction / Science & Technology
Juvenile Fiction / Science Fiction
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

Reading information

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“A heart-tugging and mind-bending exploration of time and possibility.” —School Library Journal
“A pleasure to read…full of heart and imagination.” —Kirkus Reviews
“Zhang’s story is filled with real-world lessons on compassion and kindness with a sci-fi twist—a skillfully rendered framing device for exploring deeper issues of loss, longing, and acceptance.” —Publishers Weekly
“With unwavering hope and focus, and new friendships with unlikely peers, the novel is entertaining and sweet.” —Booklist

In the tradition of The Thing About Jellyfish and When You Reach Me, acclaimed author Kat Zhang offers a luminous and heartbreaking novel about a girl who is convinced that an upcoming solar eclipse will bring back her dead mother.

One of the happiest memories twelve-year-old Sophia Wallace has is of her tenth birthday. Her mother made her a cake that year—and not a cake from a boxed-mix, but from scratch. She remembers the way the frosting tasted, the way the pink sugar roses dissolved on her tongue.

This memory, and a scant few others like it, is all Sophia has of her mother, so she keeps them close. She keeps them secret, too. Because as paltry as these memories are, she shouldn’t have them at all.

The truth is, Sophia Wallace’s mother died when she was six years old. But that isn’t how she remembers it. Not always.

Sophia has never told anyone about her unusual memories—snapshots of a past that never happened. But everything changes when Sophia’s seventh grade English class gets an assignment to research solar eclipses. She becomes convinced that the upcoming solar eclipse will grant her the opportunity to make her alternate life come true, to enter a world where her mother never died.

With the help of two misfit boys, she must figure out a way to bring her mother back to her—before the opportunity is lost forever.
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