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Racing the Moon [Kindle Edition]

Alan Armstrong , Tim Jessell
2.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $6.99
Kindle Price: $5.98
You Save: $1.01 (14%)
Sold by: Random House LLC

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Book Description

An adventurous new work from Newbery Honor-Winning author, Alan Armstrong.

In the spring of 1947, outer space was an unexplored realm. But eleven year-old Alexis (Alex) Heart and her impulsive brother, Chuck, believe that the stars are within reach. In the midst of building their own rocket, Alex befriends Captain Ebbs, and an army scientist who is working to create food for future space travelers, and who is also a descendent of Captain John Smith. Alex soon introduces Chuck to her new friend, and the trio's shared interest in space travel sets off a series of adventures that the three will never forget. From meeting pioneering German rocket scientist Dr. Wenher von Braun, and a thrilling sailing trip down the Potomac to an island on the Chesapeake where a top secret rocket launch is about to take place, Alex and Chuck are about to have their lives forever changed.


Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 5-7-World War II is over and, like many American kids, 11-year-old Alex and her 17-year-old brother, Chuck, are fascinated with space science. They build model rockets, read and study about radio codes, and even have a tree house equipped as a Moon Station. They are excited to discover that their new neighbor, Captain Ebbs, is actually part of the space research program, and that she works with pioneer space scientist Wernher von Braun. Ebbs is impressed by the kids' research, but not at all happy with Chuck's tendency to "liberate" materials for his experiments from local stores. Hoping to encourage a more acceptable lifestyle, she invites the children to join her on a sailing expedition down the Potomac to observe a top-secret rocket launch. In many ways, their trip will resemble a space voyage. The travelers will be on their own "out there," Ebbs says. Success will require cooperation and self-reliance and a readiness to adapt. However, while the captain plans to watch the blastoff from a safe-and legal-distance, Chuck insists on a closer view. Despite armed guards, the FBI, and the presence of von Braun himself, the siblings resolve to sneak onto the restricted island. The quiet, leisurely pacing of the action recalls the generally peaceful atmosphere of rural America in the postwar years. However, there are subtle reminders of the conflicts that lie just below the surface and that will shortly erupt onto the national scene-communism, xenophobia, militarism. With realistic dialogue, authentic period details, and references to historical figures and events, this novel brings to life an important, but often overlooked, era in American and scientific history.-Elaine E. Knight, Lincoln Elementary Schools, ILα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Review

Kirkus Reviews, April 1, 2012:
Inspired by the real Joan Cotton Ebbs, this chronicle of sibling aeronautical aspiration and misadventure provides a peek at the post-World War II U.S. space program. High-flying adventure grounded in reality.

Publishers Weekly, April 30, 2012:
Newbery Honor author Armstrong (Whittington) works a good deal of scientific and historical information into his story without affecting its pace, energy, or style. A lively historical adventure with ready appeal to space enthusiasts and those with an appetite for adventure.

Booklist, June 1, 2012:
Armstrong (with the help of Jessell’s spot art) captures the essence of youthful pluck, and Chuck’s determination to learn at all costs is something that readers can admire.

Product Details

  • File Size: 5981 KB
  • Print Length: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Random House Books for Young Readers (June 26, 2012)
  • Sold by: Random House LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B005S6T7EQ
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #927,929 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

2.7 out of 5 stars
(3)
2.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This book dismisses a main character's Nazi past by saying he was only really interested in rocket science and that's why he helped the Nazis. Nothing to worry about. What a message for children. It doesn't matter what evil you do if you are smart and interested in science. I find this chilling and threw the book in the trash.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A review from Bookworm1858 July 15, 2012
Format:Hardcover
I requested this book on a whim after seeing that it was a historical novel, a genre close to my heart. I thought I saw something about a female main character with a love of adventure and dreams of the moon, which sounded different from my usual read.

Well, this ended up being kind of a weird read for me. There were a lot of threads and things I thought would be explored more but then weren't and things that were oddly brought in. For example, I had expected a story about young Alex following her dreams to learn about space travel in the year 1947. Instead it seemed to be more about her older brother Chuck, straightening out his life and receiving an amazing opportunity to join the space program after much talk about being adopted, actions made out of spite towards other, and multiple endangerments of Alex's life (more about that later). Then there is the exciting Captain Ebbs, who helped feed Europe after World War II and is working to create new space food for the astronauts. Her interest in the kids gives them the amazing opportunities they experience, including meeting the brilliant Wernher von Braun, a Nazi-scientist who defected to the US to continue his pursuit of knowledge. She also is a descendant of John Smith (he of Pocahontas fame to us Disney fans) and shares his journal about exploration with parallels to the work of the day's rocket scientists.

First things first, Alex clearly adored her older brother but I was frequently appalled by his behavior and what he modeled for her. He encouraged thievery, looking before you leap, and trespassing on federal grounds where they could easily have been shot! I can see where Alex sought adventure but I just wanted to shake some sense in to that boy.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Wild Ride! December 19, 2012
By NC
Format:Hardcover
There are quite a lot of wild antics in this book. I was taken aback at first for the lack of consequences for some of the more irresponsible actions of the characters. I was glad (as were the characters) when an caring adult finally took charge to help these kids toward their dreams. It is certainly a page turner. As a librarian I know that there are some kids that would really appreciate what this book has to say. I'm glad to have it to share with them. I was given an advance copy of this title.
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