Pickle the panda is one of the first of his kind: an intelligent animal capable of thinking, feeling, and communicating like the humans who raised him. Feeling like an alien in his own family, Pickle finds unexpected friends in Ramses, an ape that manages to pass as a human, and Meghan Watson, a studious mathematician working on tiny robot bees that could replace the world’s dwindling bee population. The only problem is that the bees aren’t just dying - they’re evolving! Like Pickle, the bees have developed an almost human intelligence, and they’re convinced that the humans’ excessive use of pesticides mean war.
Pickle's starts off like any other “first day of new school” YA novel, but quickly becomes something else entirely as the story progresses, introducing timely environmental themes and forcing Pickle to face off against a host of villainous obstacles ranging from violent religious extremism to incompetent airline ticket agents and overpriced candy bars.
Throughout the novel, "10 minutes from now" environmental events and up-to-the minute tech trends serve both to ground the story in its place in time and provide talking points for its readers, who won't believe what Pickle has to go through to find friendship, family, and love.
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