This summer, I joined an amazing group of educators in a project called #bookexcursion. Made up of avid readers, our group reads and shares new titles for elementary classrooms (inspired by #bookjourney). I was so excited when author Katie Slivensky sent a copy of The Countdown Conspiracy our way!
At its core, The Countdown Conspiracy is about a group of six preteens who are selected for the first ever mission to Mars. They’ve gone through a rigorous selection process, but they still have nine years of training ahead of them before they can actually takeoff for their historic journey. However, the aftermath of a world war looms over their mission prospects. With the six kids representing six different countries, tensions are high. The kids face many obstacles in their pursuit of achieving their dreams. Thirteen-year-old Miranda Regeant, the US expedition representative and the book’s narrator, begins to believe the kids may be in danger.
As someone who absolutely loves learning about the history of the space race, I immediately drawn in by this story. Its fast pace, well-developed characters and constant action make it a thrilling read. From the opening lines, this book is an absolute page-turner. The growth of the characters is also exceptional. This book truly instills a growth mindset in readers. The main characters are completing tasks that have never been asked of anyone in history. They have to recognize their own ability to grow and learn, and they have to keep trying when it gets difficult.
I can’t wait for this book to make its way into the hands of middle grade readers. Young readers need to see kids like them who code, engineer, problem solve, and innovate. Many young minds will be inspired by this book. Congratulations to Katie Slivensky on a fantastic middle grade debut!
The Countdown Conspiracy will be released by HarperCollins Children’s in August 2017.
Thank you to author Katie Slivensky (@paleopaws) for generously providing an ARC of The Countdown Conspiracy to #bookexcursion! #bookexcursion is a group of ten educators who read and share new children’s and middle grade titles. For more of my #bookexcursion reviews, click here!