Friday, March 25, 2016

Nomad by William Alexander

Cover image for NomadGabriel Fuentes is the 12-year-old ambassador for the planet Earth to the Universe, chosen because of his skills in diplomacy and his ability to understand other people.  In this second adventure he is in a race against time to stop the evil Outlasts from destroying even more inhabited planets in our galaxy. He teams up with the ambassador from the the nomadic people, the Kaen, and a previous ambassador from Earth, Nadia, in a daring attempt to find out more about the Outlasts. Too late he discovers that by trying to communicate with them, he has made Earth their next target.

This is my favorite recent children's science fiction series.  Alexander's world building is fresh and interesting, and his characters are fully realized and likeable.  Most of all, I like that fact that Gabe and his allies use observation, wits and careful handling of social situations instead of violence to solve problems. There is plenty of action and excitement, but very little fighting.  In the real world, problems are rarely solved by doing battle physically.  This book models, in a non-preachy way, how to try to empathize, negotiate, and find workable and mutually beneficial solutions to problems. (264 p)

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