Cakes in Space

Philip Reeve, illus. by Sarah McIntyre. Random, $12.99 (224p) ISBN 978-0-385-38792-7
When 10-year-old Astra asks the Nom-o-Tron food synthesizer on her spaceship for the “ultimate cake” (“I want something so delicious, it’s scary!”), she inadvertently sets in motion a wild intergalactic adventure filled with ferocious cakes with razor-sharp teeth, spoon-stealing aliens, and an unlikely but endearing friendship with a Nameless Horror. Astra and her parents (McIntyre’s orange-and-black illustrations reveal them to be a mixed-race family) are heading to Nova Mundi to make “the new planet ready for other people from Earth.” Given that the journey will take 199 years and requires cryogenic stasis in “freezer beds,” there are bound to be some bumps along the way. When Astra awakens during the journey to find their ship off course and under attack, she realizes that she is partly to blame and has to set things right. Though bits of Reeve and McIntyre’s second “Not-So-Impossible Tale” (following 2014’s Oliver and the Seawigs, set in the same world) have a hint of scariness, the kookiness of the characters and McIntyre’s humorous cartoons, which are fully integrated into the story, keep this thrill-ride light and fun. Ages 7–10. (May)
Reviewed on: 03/30/2015
Release date: 05/26/2015
Genre: Children's
Paperback - 211 pages - 978-0-19-273490-7
Hardcover - 211 pages - 978-0-19-273456-3
Library Binding - 224 pages - 978-0-385-38795-8
Paperback - 240 pages - 978-0-385-38793-4
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