Zero Gravity (Astronaut Academy Series)

Zero Gravity (Astronaut Academy Series)

5.0 1
by Dave Roman
     
 

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Hakata Soy's past life as the leader of a futuristic super team won't stay in the past!

The former space hero is doing his best to keep his head down at Astronaut Academy. Things aren't going so great, though. The most popular girl in school has it in for him. His best friend won't return his calls. And his new roommate is a complete jock who only cares about

Overview

Hakata Soy's past life as the leader of a futuristic super team won't stay in the past!

The former space hero is doing his best to keep his head down at Astronaut Academy. Things aren't going so great, though. The most popular girl in school has it in for him. His best friend won't return his calls. And his new roommate is a complete jock who only cares about Fireball.

Hakata just wants to make a fresh start. But how will he find time to study Anti-Gravity Gymnastics and Tactical Randomness when he's got a robot doppelganger on its way to kill him?

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Roman previously adapted the X-men as a shojo manga, so he certainly knows his way around the "special academy" story. This time out, it's the story of mech-riding superhero/ordinary school kid Hakata Soy, and his attempt to make a fresh start at a new orbital school filled with a bunch of colorful, aspirational classmates. Hakata struggles with the typical social drama of middle school, as well as the occasional evil twin robot assassin. It's a zany setup designed more for random fight scenes and one-liners, and the book contains a mix of short stories and one-page gag strips. The dialogue reflects this, with the kind of manic every-line-has-to-be-a-joke dialogue that reflects contemporary kids' cartoons like The Fairly OddParents. The artwork is very cartoony and cute, and uses free-floating layouts to add to the whimsy. Ages 10–14. (June)
Children's Literature - Michael Jung PhD
School can be tough—but it is even worse when you go to an outer space school like Astronaut Academy where fireball throwing students, secret agent pandas, and antigravity drills are all part of the regular curriculum. Just ask Hakata Soy, a former space hero (who is being hunted down by a killer robot named Cybert), Miyumi San (who just received a special watch that can freeze time), or Doug Hiro (whose love of his space suit is matched only by his complete lack of social skills). New York Times bestselling author Dave Roman writes and illustrates this collection of manga-style vignettes that lampoon every popular Japanese anime convention from giant mecha-robots to characters with unrealistically wavy hair. It is a bit unconventional for the uninitiated, but for comic book fans who like seeing their favorite anime and manga cliches get hilariously parodied, it is a definite hit. A great choice for kids (and adults) who enjoy the self-referential humor of comic books like DC's "Tiny Titans." Reviewer: Michael Jung, PhD
School Library Journal
Gr 3 Up—This charming graphic adventure follows the exploits of child space hero Hakata Soy. Enrolled in an intergalactic boarding school, he navigates his way through the over-the-top personalities of many of his melodramatic classmates. An element of danger is added when fellow hero Gadget creates a new best friend—a robotic duplicate of Hakata Soy that includes one of his "broken hearts." This robot is co-opted by villainous bird people that set him upon the academy to kill his flesh-and-blood doppelganger. While this title is obviously geared for and can be enjoyed by school-age children, there is also tongue-and-cheek humor that older readers are sure to enjoy. Each supporting character is highlighted in mini-chapters, which gives the book a kind of newspaper comic-strip feel. The black-and-white pencil illustrations invoke the artistic style of a manga, but many of Roman's unique theatrical elements, including boys concerned with "cool hair" and wheeled dinosaurs used for moon racing, create a universe unto its own.—Ryan Donovan, New York Public Library
Kirkus Reviews

This book will make readers want to flip through the author's doodle pad, in case he has ideas that are even wilder.

Dinosaurs show up early in the book. They're in outer space. They come with wheels, so students at Astronaut Academy can race them. The school also has a time-traveling panda and a league of villains in footy pajamas. There is a plot here—something about a student being chased by his robot double—but Roman is more interested in playing with language than anything else. He uses intentionally awkward syntax ("ATTACKING is something frowned upon by people because someone may get hurt in the process") and made-up spelling: At one point he even uses "bee" as a verb, as in "To bee or not to bee." Some readers may be looking for a more focused plot—the author seems just to be finding his footing in the early chapters—but it's hard not to like a school where Wearing Cute Hats is on the lesson plan. Fans of Harry Potter or Archie comics might appreciate the romances among the students. As in those series, the couples don't get together in the first volume, but there are talking bunnies to see in the meantime. Some of them know karate chops.

Roman's quirks may irritate a few readers, but many children will run to their own scratch pads to draw fierce bunnies, wearing cute hats.(Graphic novel. 10-14)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781596436206
Publisher:
First Second
Publication date:
06/07/2011
Series:
Astronaut Academy Series, #1
Pages:
192
Sales rank:
208,861
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 8.40(h) x 0.80(d)
Age Range:
10 - 14 Years

Meet the Author

Two-time New York Times bestselling writer-illustrator Dave Roman is the creator of Agnes Quill: An Anthology of Mystery. Roman has contributed stories to the Flight series, and has written comics and manga for X-Men and The Last Airbender. He lives in New York City with his wife, Raina Telgemeier.

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Zero Gravity (Astronaut Academy Series) 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
msl More than 1 year ago
She can't wait for the second one to come out. She liked both the storytelling and the drawing style. And as a mom, I approve--some manga aren't all that good to read, but this is a graphic novel that was written with care about character and plot development.