Space Home 7
Juvenile science fiction, adventure
It is 2077 and the Guardians have decreed that, in order for Northern California to heal after the drought and the Dry War, families must evacuate and live in space homes orbiting Earth. Twelve-year-old Miarra is the only occupant of Space Home 7 who questions the Guardians’ motives. Will she succeed in contacting Earth to sort out the truth from the lies and to find her way back home?
In the Pages & More
“The lights are dimmed, and I try to sit up straighter in the harness. After all, this is not just another rehearsal. This is the real thing. We are actually leaving Earth. The enormity of the thought stills me. My mouth is dry. I can feel my pulse in the side of my head where my temple is crushed by the head gear.”
Page count: 176
Pub Date: March 1, 2023
Genre: Juvenile science fiction, adventure
Keywords space, climate change, drought, misinformation
Q&A with Janet Wylie
1. Why this time and location?
Although this is a work of science fiction, I wanted to place the book sufficiently far into the future for the space homes to be plausible solutions to the effects of climate change, so that readers can imagine themselves in Miarra’s situation as one who loves Earth and does not want to leave. A second aspect of the timing is that Cally, the twelve-year-old protagonist of my previous story, Menace in the Mist, is a senior citizen in Space Home 7, a Fogey who becomes Miarra’s contact on Earth.
2. Why this theme?
There are two themes to this story. The first is the challenges that Miarra faces as the odd-one-out in the space home, one who does not submit to hypnosis and one who doubts the motives of the leadership. The second is the ease with which humans can be deceived if they have only one trusted source of information. The story emphasizes the importance of independent thought and action and the very present danger of being deceived by misinformation.
3. Why these main characters?
Today’s kids, like Miarra, Chloe and Shark, have tough environmental problems to face. I wanted these characters to embody the feelings of responsibility and strength of purpose of youth, to reflect that, while having fun and arguments with each other, kids also use their brains to tackle hard issues with speed, confidence and success.
4. What do you hope kids will get from reading this book?
First and foremost, an entertaining read. Second, a feeling of self-reliance, that life happens when you get involved in life. And third, that it is really important to question, and to search out more than one source of information on important issues. History is littered with examples of individuals and whole nations being brought down by lies told by powerful people, people who promised them a better life.