The Icarus Project

by Laura Quimby
ages: 11+
First sentence: “The computer screen glowed in my dark bedroom like a moon.”
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Review copy provided by the publisher.

Maya is the daughter of two scientists: an archeologist mother, who is off at a site in Brazil; and a paleontologist father, whose specialty is wooly mammoths. Is it any wonder that Maya dreams of making a big scientific discovery of her own?

She has her chance when she’s allowed to go with her father on a dig — an eco-tourist company found some mammoth tusks in the Arctic ice, and have called in her father to supervise the dig.  Except, once they get there, they discover that the mammoth part was a hoax. What  they discovered was much, much more important.

Hmmm… should I tell you what they discover? I’m not sure, partially because I’m not really sure what it WAS that they discovered. It was a boy, yes (shades of Encino Man there) but it was also something… More.

I liked this one, partially for the science-y elements. Maya was really into research and science and discovery, and blending that with a bit of mystery worked quite well. Of course there was a sidekick in the son of another dig member, but thankfully that never really blossomed into a romance. *whew* It was a straight-forward Arctic dig book before it took a left turn into the mystical about halfway through. To be honest, even though it was kind of hokey, I didn’t really mind it. The whole There Is Something Out There (the Truth?) thing worked for me. And while it was probably highly implausible that Maya could pull off what she did in the end, by that point I was willing to go along with anything.

Granted, I may be alone here. But, I thought it was an enjoyable story.

(Just for the record: because this is a Cybils nominee, I’ve been asked to make sure y’all know this is my opinion only, and not that of the panel.) 

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