Nancy Keane's Booktalks -- Quick and Simple

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Sleator, William.
New York : E.P. Dutton, 1984.
IL YA  RL 5.6
ISBN 0140375953

(2 booktalks)

Booktalk #1

Do you like games? Barney learned a new game. It's called Interstellar Pig. Each player takes on the role of an alien from another planet. The object of the game is to be the player with the Piggy when the timer goes off. When the timer goes off, the universe explodes, and the only planet saved is the one with the Piggy on it. Then suddenly Earth appears on the game board. Barney was sure it wasn't there the first time they played.  And Barney begins to think that maybe Interstellar Pig isn't a game at all!  (Debbie Gray, School Library Media Specialist, Jackson Annex, Hempstead, NY

Booktalk #2

   When was the last time you ever witnessed an interplanetary war? Have you ever saved the world because of a board game, or thought something was one thing, but turned out to be another? Barney, the main character of Interstellar Pig, witnesses all of this and more during this adventure, Barney learns about the many other creatures that inhabit the universe.
   Interstellar Pig, an interest holding novel by William Sleator, is about a board game with the unlikely name of “Interstellar Pig”. The novel is set on a vacation beach in modern times with Barney's family of everyday tourists looking for a good time.
   In the beginning of the novel, sixteen-year-old Barney is listening to a conversation between Barney's Parents and one of their guests. By the end of the conversation, the neighbors who seem a little more than strange to Barney arrive to stay in the ugly house next door. Barney's parents seem to be getting stranger as Barney gets to know the neighbors better.
  After a wind surfing trip to a remote island, and Barney finds a small rusted box, the neighbors seem a little mad at Barney. This strange behavior causes Barney to open the little box and “Could it be!” The coin-like Piggy is staring Barney in the face mocking him. In the next game Barney plays, things are getting even stranger. Earth is now part of the game. He was sure it wasn't there the first few times he played. Then Barney realized it wasn't a game.  Now that Barney has found the real Piggy he must fight to save his life and the rest of the world. Join Barney on an exciting adventure to discover the truth of the Piggy before it destroys the world and everyone else.
   Interstellar Pig is very suspenseful novel that will keep you so interested that you cannot stop turning the pages. Barney has many adventures and many close calls while discovering the truth about these neighbors. To share these adventures and enjoy a great book, read Interstellar Pig. You will wonder why this is not an award winner or has not been turned into a movie. (Nathan Vasquez, Minturn Middle School, Minturn, CO)

SUBJECTS:     Science fiction.
                        Board games -- Fiction.


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