Children’s Book Reviews

Children's Book Reviews: MiNRs

Publish November 19, 2015

Space pirates, an extra-terrestrial battle, and a desperate quest for survival ramp up the tension in MiNRS, a sci-fi adventure by the author of the popular Neil Flambé series, Kevin Sylvester. Eight years ago, Christopher Nichols and his parents moved to the Earth-like asteroid of Perses to participate in Melming Mining’s mineral excavation project. So far, the mission has been a success, and the colonists have approximated life on Earth. But the asteroid and Earth are now entering a two month communications blackout, and the night before it begins, pirates attack Perses and decimate the colony. Some of the children manage to escape down mine elevators into the tunnels many stories below the surface where an emergency beacon has been hidden. If the children can find it, they can send for help once the blackout ends. But Christopher and his fellow survivors soon realize that escaping was the easy part. The space pirates have other plans, and the tunnels hold dark secrets. The children must survive below the surface for two months, thwart their attackers, and figure out the map to find the beacon just to have a chance for survival. With a unique setting, fast-paced action, and several unexpected plot twists, MiNRS is an ideal introduction to sci-fi that will delight enthusiasts and novices alike. Sylvester’s engineering jargon is often difficult to follow, but adds a level of credibility to his extraordinary premise and does not hinder understanding of the plot. A challenging read with some graphic detail, MiNRS will find a devoted audience among middle school video game buffs and sci-fi fans, but its various sub-plots – a mystery, a coded map, and a love story – will appeal to less obvious readers as well. The first in a series, MiNRS is sci-fi done right: smart, suspenseful, and fantastic enough to spark the imagination.


Kevin Sylvester
Simon and Schuster Canada
ISBN 13: 978-1-4814-4039-4

Karen Doerksen
Karen Doerksen Karen Doerksen lives in Sherwood Park, Alberta with her husband and four children. She works for the Edmonton Public Library, and holds a master’s degree in Library and Information Studies from the University of Alberta.  

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