Seeing Stars

Seeing Stars

by Gary Barwin
     
 

Alex Issacson's life has never been normal. His mother got into bed the day his father left, and never got back out again. Hugely over-weight, she is known to the viewing public as Starbright the phone-in-psychic. Although she spends her time consulting the stars and offering advice to others, she won't answer the questions that consume Alex. Why did his father

Overview

Alex Issacson's life has never been normal. His mother got into bed the day his father left, and never got back out again. Hugely over-weight, she is known to the viewing public as Starbright the phone-in-psychic. Although she spends her time consulting the stars and offering advice to others, she won't answer the questions that consume Alex. Why did his father leave, and where is he now?

So Alex has turned his search to the internet. When he starts receiving strange emails riddled with bad puns, Alex thinks he might be on the right track -- but what on earth do they mean?

More clues come when a "saxophone incident" leads Alex on a dangerous cross-country adventure. After dodging the barrel of a hermit's shotgun, hooking up with a band on tour, and hitching a ride with a weak-bladdered truck driver, Alex may have found out more than he ever wanted to know. And the truth may just leave him seeing stars.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
Alex Isaacson's life is starting to get out of control. His father disappeared so long ago that he doesn't even remember him. His mother has been in bed ever since, making a living by calling herself Starbright and reading the stars for anonymous callers, but unable to help Alex. His uncle is seemingly insane and obsessed by frogs. Alex has been taking care of the both of them for some time when two things happen that begin to change his life. One—he begins to get strange answers to the inquiries regarding his father that he has been placing on the Internet. Two—he begins to fall for Annie, a girl in his band class. After an "incident with a saxophone" on the bus one day, Annie's mother asks him to interview a local inventor/pilot for the newspaper. Alex begins a long and confusing journey to find his father, solve a mystery and help sort out his life. The story is interesting, if not quite believable. While it won't appear on any summer reading lists, it will probably keep a young reader's interest to the end. 2001, Stoddart Kids/Stoddart Publishing,
— Heather Robertson
School Library Journal
Gr 5-7-This novel lacks an authentic voice or style. Alex Isaacson, 15, is trying to unravel the mysteries of his bizarre family life. Why did his father disappear 12 years ago? Why has his mother, a desperately obese telephone psychic, refused to get out of bed since then? Why is his Uncle Barnard always painting strange pictures of frogs? Alex eventually learns that his relatives' devastating secret concerns a sister he never knew he had, but his journey is not emotionally involving. None of the characters or relationships are fully fleshed out, and the protagonist is annoying rather than endearing. While it's fine for readers to know that The Wizard of Oz is Alex's favorite movie, it's an intrusion to have an "Oz" reference on so many pages.-Ronni Krasnow, New York Public Library Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780773762275
Publisher:
Fitzhenry & Whiteside, Limited
Publication date:
10/01/2001
Pages:
181
Product dimensions:
5.20(w) x 7.70(h) x 0.53(d)
Age Range:
10 - 12 Years

Meet the Author

Gary Barwin is a Fitzhenry and Whiteside author.

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