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Review of Space Taxi: Archie Takes Flight

mass_space taxiSpace Taxi: Archie Takes Flight
by Wendy Mass and Michael Brawer; 
illus. by Elise Gravel
Primary, Intermediate    Little, Brown    101 pp.
4/14    978-0-316-24319-3    $14.99
Paper ed.  978-0-316-24320-9    $5.99
e-book ed.  978-0-316-24321-6    $5.99

“Take Your Kid to Work Day” will never again be the same for Archie. He has been waiting “eight years, eight months, and eight days” for the big day. Waking up for work at midnight is not too unusual for a taxi driver like Mr. Morningstar, but little does Archie know that his plain old dad is in fact an interstellar taxi driver, hauling all sorts of folks to other planets and beyond. It turns out that Archie’s destiny is tied to the space taxi: he has the rare — and until this moment undiscovered — power to be a space taxi copilot. He can read the special map that guides the lightning-fast cab through wormholes, planets, suns, and galaxies. Everything about these new planets is a surprise to Archie, from zero gravity to a talking cat with the outrageous name of Pilarbing Fangorious to passengers who turn out to be criminals. The plot moves right along, helping the newly independent reader stay engaged. The description of the map is especially enticing: who wouldn’t love a 3-D map that changes with every turn, opening up whole new galaxies? Occasional black-and-white cartoon illustrations add to the fun and keep the pages turning. The number 1 on the book’s spine indicates that this is just the first adventure for Archie — here’s to more to come!

From the July/August 2014 issue of The Horn Book Magazine.

Robin Smith About Robin Smith

Robin Smith is a second-grade teacher at the Ensworth School in Nashville, Tennessee. She is a reviewer for Kirkus and The Horn Book Magazine and has served on multiple award committees.

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