George’s Cosmic Treasure Hunt
This is a science-fiction book with a heavy emphasis on science, and only enough fiction to bind the facts into a coherent story. It is the second book chronicling the adventures of George and his best friend Annie as they explore the universe. They follow a trail of clues, the first of which Annie discovers following a malfunction in her father’s Mars explorer robot.
The book opens with a very detailed description of a rocket launch from an astronaut’s perspective. This chapter describes an event that occurs towards the middle of the tale and then the narrative jumps back to the beginning. The story is augmented by essays contributed by a number of leading scientists, who explain current scientific thinking in relation to the field of space exploration. Some of these are incorporated directly into the narrative and the remainder are placed adjacent to the first mention of the relevant topic. Blocks of space photographs are interspersed in the text.
This book is a curious hybrid between an information book and a storybook, with both the characters and the plot subordinate to the authors’ educational aims. It is speculative fiction at its most grounded, resulting in a book that is worthy but unspectacular.