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Apollo's Outcasts Hardcover – November 6, 2012

34 customer reviews
Book 10 of 10 in the Near-Space Series

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Editorial Reviews


"Steele adeptly mixes political intrigue, combat, and character development as he ushers Jamey through an action-packed trial by fire. Like the best Heinlein juveniles, the science is realistic and the concepts drawn from modern speculation, and there's even some chaste romance. This is solid, space-faring fun."
-Publishers Weekly

"[S]pectacular settings.... nothing beats learning what it's like to walk around the Moon and how the Earth appears from there.... [T]his is for anyone who's gazed longingly upward."
-Kirkus Reviews

"Steele combines the science fiction of Robert Heinlein with modern technical knowledge and political thriller sensibilities to create a novel that should have wide appeal."
-School Library Journal

"[C]an easily rank with Heinlein's best juveniles. Indeed, it reads like one of them… if it had been updated for modern science and modern sensibilities (unlike Heinlein's young heroes, Steele's recognize the existence of females, and their potential interest)…. [A]n excellent introduction to science fiction novels for the young adult reader, and also an excellent introduction to Steele's own, extended (more adult) tales of the near-future… Highly recommended."

"The idea of teenagers on the moon seemed too good to be true as I've read other books about similar topics and they always disappointed, but not Apollo's Outcasts. I'd recommend it for anyone who loves space travel, political stories, or has a love for science fiction in general."
-Night Owl Reviews

"[A] book for young adults about living on the Moon that gets the science right and that includes an engrossing, well-crafted story....The Apollo lunar base is totally believable....The way it is handled in this book ties up all the loose ends of the story yet leaves open the possibility for more adventures set in this future world. I sure hope there are more because I can't wait to get back to Apollo!"
-National Space Society

"[A] charming Young Adult novel that should go down well with readers on the younger end of the YA scale as well as older science fiction fans in the mood for a nostalgic trip back to their own Golden Age of SF."

"Steele writes nice sci-fi action and intrigue.... The book is really great if you're just in the mood for some not-super-hard sci-fi, something there's just not enough of in YA these days."
-Forever Young Adult

About the Author

Allen M. Steele was a journalist before turning to his first love, science fiction. Since then he has published seventeen previous novels and nearly a hundred short stories. His work has received numerous awards, including three Hugos, and has been translated worldwide. A lifelong space enthusiast, he has testified before Congress in hearings regarding space exploration, flown the NASA space shuttle simulator, and serves as an advisor for the Space Frontier Foundation. Steele lives in Massachusetts with his wife and dogs. Visit him online at and

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 12 and up
  • Grade Level: 7 and up
  • Hardcover: 311 pages
  • Publisher: Pyr (November 6, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1616146869
  • ISBN-13: 978-1616146863
  • Product Dimensions: 5.8 x 1 x 8.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (34 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #995,238 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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More About the Author

Allen Steele is a science fiction writer with nineteen novels and six collections of short fiction to his credit. His works have been translated worldwide and have received the Hugo, Locus, and Seiun awards, and have been nominated for the Nebula, Sturgeon, and Sidewise Awards. He is also a recipient of the the Robert A. Heinlein Award. His first published story, "Live from the Mars Hotel," was published in 1988, and his first novel, Orbital Decay, was published in 1989. His best-known work is the Coyote series -- Coyote, Coyote Rising, Coyote Frontier, Coyote Horizon, and Coyote Destiny -- and the associative novels set in the same universe: Spindrift, Galaxy Blues, and Hex. A graduate of New England College and the University of Missouri, he is a former journalist, and once spent a brief tenure as a Washington correspondent. He was born and raised in Nashville, Tennessee, and now lives in western Massachusetts with his wife and dogs.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Stefan VINE VOICE on November 13, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Jamey Barlowe was born on the Moon, but moved back to Earth as an infant following his mother's tragic death. Because his fragile bones can't handle Earth's gravity, Jamey needs a wheelchair to get around, but he has learned to live with his disability and lead a normal teenage life. Then, on his sixteenth birthday, Jamey's father wakes him up in the middle of the night and sends him back to the Moon to escape a military coup in the United States.

Jamey arrives in the lunar mining colony Apollo with five other refugees, including his kid sister and a young woman who seems to be more than she appears. At first it's a challenge to start a new life in an unfamiliar environment, but thanks to the lower lunar gravity, Jamey can now walk independently for the first time in his life, so despite everything he flourishes and finds himself taking on new challenges. Meanwhile, tensions on Earth continue to rise, and the lunar colony soon becomes the world's focus as the new U.S. President sets her sights on the Moon's crucial He3 reserves...

Apollo's Outcasts by Allen Steele is a charming Young Adult novel that should go down well with readers on the younger end of the YA scale as well as older science fiction fans in the mood for a nostalgic trip back to their own Golden Age of SF. Anyone who doesn't fall in one of those two categories may end up disappointed because the novel's plot and characterization are so straightforward and basic that it borders on the pedestrian, but for the right reader this book will be a blast.

Jamey is a great YA protagonist: a disabled teenager, woken up in the middle of the night and immediately cast in an unfamiliar situation.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Janice Murphy on November 24, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
... because Apollo's Outcasts begins with a desperate flight to the safety of a Moon Colony and the action doesn't end until the hero saves his family, the Moon and Earth. Of course he manages to get the girl and do it with realistic and Golden Age SF appropriate adolescent clumsiness. And yes I was concerned when I began reading the make-out scene but yes you will see more explicit scenes on broadcast TV and Steele's prose is more age appropriate than some of Heinlein's juvies.

I'm going to be donating my copy to the local library. If you don't have an adolescent who needs to be lured away from vid-games why not buy a copy for yourself and then donate it to YOUR public library.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Mark Graham on November 24, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I never miss a new book from Allen Steele. His Coyote books are hands down the best sf series of the new millennium. Granted, we've got well over 900 years for someone to top it, so that may happen--who knows? So, naturally, I was curious about this two-time Hugo award winner's effort into young adult territory.
No surprise--the novel is terrific, as usual. APOLLO'S OUTCASTS has been compared to Heinlein's young adult books. This is pretty high praise, but it is well deserved. Reading OUTCASTS, a tale of teenagers who barely escape capture to become political exiles on the moon, brought back my own youth (a long time ago) when I first became addicted to science fiction by reading SPACE CADET, PODKAYNE OF MARS and others before graduating to STRANGER IN A STRANGE LAND. My 11-year-old niece will find APOLLO'S OUTCASTS in her Christmas stocking this year, and when my grandchildren are old enough, they will be reading it, too. I am counting on Allen Steele to make them science fiction addicts like me.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Arthur W Jordin on March 30, 2014
Format: Hardcover
Apollo's Outcasts (2012) is a standalone SF novel. The USA and other nations establish an International Space Consortium to mine helium-3 from the lunar regolith. The mining operations are based at Apollo, a large habitat built within Ptolemaeus Crater.

In this novel, Jamey Barlowe is the son of Stan and Connie. He is a loonie, conceived on Earth, but taken to the Moon before anyone knew his mother was pregnant. Now he suffers from Lunar Birth Deficiency Syndrome.

Jan Barlowe is Jamey's oldest sister. She is attending college at a local school so she can to tend to Jamey.

Melissa Barlowe is Jamey's next oldest sister. She is called Meemee for good reasons.

In this story, Jamey is awakened before dawn by his father. He is told to get dressed and pack a carryon bag. Jan is waking Melissa.

Melissa refuses to get up. Jan turns on the light, so Melissa puts the pillow over her eyes. Then Jan issues an order that Melissa cannot refuse.

Their father drives the family to Wallops Island. On the way, they hear an announcement that the President is dead. The Vice-President is sworn into that office.

They enter the ISC spaceport on the island and drive to the terminal. They get out of the van and meet three other ISC families. Then their father tells them the new President has him and other ISC employees on her black list. So they are sending their children into orbit.

They start to enter the building, but pause as a limo enters the employee lot. A teenaged girl gets out of the limo. Her escorts have a discussion with the parents and other ISC employees.

The ISC shuttle only has six seats available. The new girl would be the seventh passenger, so someone has to stay behind.
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