Ten year old Byron “Boon” Barnett is heading to the moon with his family and his robot, Jose Ignacio. Boon has a wild imagination and strong sense of adventure. He’ll do just about anything to sneak out of his house, away from his parents, to explore. This is constantly putting him in danger, of course, and his parents are quite explicit with him about his behavior at Cosmopolis on the Moon.
But Boon can’t change who he is at heart and he gets into even worse trouble on the moon because he’s often needing rescuing. But Boon’s constant exploring may finally come in handy when everyone in Cosmopolis – everyone on the moon! – is facing a sudden death of an interstellar origin. It is thanks to Boon’s exploration that not only will a small group manage to survive when their air tanks run out of oxygen, but the entire moon will be saved.
This reminded me a lot of the old sci-fi/adventure books that I read as a middle schooler – books I was delighted to find in the monthly book order forms we used to get in school (we didn’t have book fairs that I remember, but once a month I could pick out a couple of books from one of the two companies that would offer the opportunity to order from a small catalog).
We have an age-appropriate young boy with a sense of adventure and the opportunity to live on the moon. This is precisely the sort of character I would have wanted to read about … he gets into a bit of trouble, but he’s good at heart, and ultimately it’s up to him to be the savior of the day. He’s also got a pet robot (so to speak) and how cool is that?
Author John Huddles manages to make this extremely multi-cultural (which I personally didn’t need, but I understand the appeal to publishers [and readers] for this) – from Latina, to Kenyan, to Swedish, to Inuit and a few more as well. Huddle doesn’t draw specific attention to this, but helps to subtly infer that the future is a true melting pot.
One thing that I didn’t like so much was the message that it was okay to disregard parents and rules. Boon’s parents weren’t being unreasonable and in fact the results of Boon’s action generally show that he is prone to getting in trouble and needs to be disciplined. It is pure luck that something happens and Boon’s troublesome adventuring saves the day. I’m pretty sure this is not the message I would want to be sending my kids – that it’s okay to get in trouble and be bailed out because maybe you’ll be the hero in the end.
Overall, a fun adventure for young readers.
Looking for a good book? Boon on the Moon by John Huddles is a delightful sci-fi adventure for young readers.
I received a digital copy of this book from the publisher, through Netgalley, in exchange for an honest review.
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Boon on the Moon
author: John Huddles
publisher: Notable Kids Publishing
hardcover, 216 pages