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In an interactive fiction format, the reader is a member of an elite group of interstellar astronauts, fighting to prevent the encroachment of an enigmatic, advanced race on the planet Earth
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Grade 6-9-- Val Castaladi, 16, has survived both her mother's death and her father's overprotectiveness, including his insistence that she be accompanied at all times by his chauffeur. Then she learns that she is adopted; devastated, she is afraid to ask her father if it's true. Finally, she confronts her father, who tells her that she is actually a relative's child, purchased by Mr. Castaladi when she was still a baby. The girl meets her biological mother and learns she has six brothers and sisters; one sister, by design, is her teacher at the Catholic school she attends. Throughout the story, Val seeks the help of her best friend Kit, who has problems of her own--an alcoholic mother and a lawyer father who is more anxious to please clients (like Val's father) than her. Val puts the friendship in jeopardy; at the end it is difficult to tell whether the girls will be able to renew it. Minor characters, such as a wealthy classmate who was also adopted, don't add to the flow of the narrative. The underlying implication that Mr. Castaladi is a "Mafia-type" who uses his money and influence ruthlessly to get what he wants is never clearly addressed. This book, although disjointed in plot, shows that sometimes finding out the truth is not as desirable as living a lie. --Bonnie L. Raasch, C. B. Vernon Middle School, Marion, IA
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Around a potentially riveting tale of a teenager's encounter with the facts of her adoption, Pfeffer perpetuates some nasty stereotypes of Italian-Americans. Val Castaladi lives a protected life, escorted to and from her all-girls' Catholic school--Most Precious Blood--by her bodyguard; her best friend is the daughter of her father's lawyer. She considers her widower father a ``respectable businessman'' even though she knows there are ``mob'' connections. Then she learns that she is adopted, that distant relatives gave her up in return for financial security, and that one of the nuns at her school is a blood sibling. Her father tells her that he couldn't have adopted a son: ``What does a man care about a daughter?...A son would be a Castaladi. He'd expect to take over the business. I couldn't accept that if he wasn't my blood.'' The book is dense with similar clich‚s (including the purchased silence of the nuns in return for a stained-glass window, and stories of families who have ``moved'' or been ``transferred'' for slights against Val's family). The adoption issues are explored only superficially. (Fiction. 10+) -- Copyright ©1991, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.
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Book Description Starfire, 1991. Mass Market Paperback. Condition: New. Seller Inventory # DADAX0553288385
Book Description Starfire, 1991. Condition: New. book. Seller Inventory # M0553288385