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Are We Alone? Scientists Search for Life in Space

by Gloria Skurzynski

In the jungle of Puerto Rico, next to a giant aluminum telescope bowl, we meet astronomers Peter Backus and Jill Tarter of the SETI (Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence) program. This research program is determined to find evidence of extraterrestrial life by searching for its radio signals. They hope to catch radio waves created by some kind of life far out in space. These scientists love their work: "Arriving in the control room, Jill puts on a tape of her favorite samba music by a group called Viva Brazil. Others in the room stay seated and propel themselves on their wheeled office chairs from workstation to workstation, but Jill usually gets up and sambas across the floor. "In this rare combination of engaging narrative and factual information, Gloria Skurzynski uses techniques she's developed as a fiction writer to energize her science writing. This book not only brings the reader into the world of extra-terrestrial science, but is also very much about the hopes and dreams of real people. She lends a strong personal voice to the narrative, drawing the reader deep into the world of extraterrestrial study. Humans have always been fascinated with extraterrestrial life, and the book traces that interest, including the origination of the term "flying saucer. " Sloan also explains why scientists don't buy it. "There's been no hard evidence, not a single artifact left behind-a lost boot, or a shred of whatever material the UFO was made of, or even a flake of alien skin. "But not believing in flying saucers doesn't mean scientists don't believe in extraterrestrial life. They look for it using telescopes, space missions, and planet explorations. They study extremophiles, organisms that live in extreme environments on Earth, in the hopes that they will lead us to a better understanding of how life may exist in space. Really, what could be out there? This book visits scientists across the globe who are trying to find out, from Puerto Rico to California, from Socorro, New Mexico to Chile, Finland, Spain, and Hawaii. And, what's on tap for the future of extraterrestrial study? Researchers study hydrothermal vents deep under the sea, create super-sensitive radio telescopes, and scour the highest lake in the world. Extremely well written, filled with little-known facts, and often quite humorous, this book brings to life a subject that children are intrigued by. Our time is truly a fascinating moment in scientific exploration, and this book will help anyone get a jump on the search for E. T. Who knows? Maybe there's an alien as close as next-door?a next-door planet, that is!

Buried Alive

by Gloria Skurzynski Alane Ferguson

Who was that man in the Park Service uniform who brought Jack and Ashley Landon into the wilds of Alaska's Denali National Park along with their friend Nicky Milano? Whoever he was, he has given them a dogsled ride to certain death unless somebody finds them soon. Their troubles are about to get a whole heap deeper as the first rumblings of an avalanche turn into a deafening roar!

Caught in the Moving Mountains

by Gloria Skurzynski

While on a three day hike in the mountain wilderness, two thirteen-year-old brothers must use all their skill to survive when they are confronted by an injured drug dealer and are caught in an earthquake.

Cliff-Hanger

by Gloria Skurzynski Alane Ferguson

When a cougar attacks a hiker in Mesa Verde National Park, the Landons have another mystery on their hands. Jack and Ashley are used to visiting parks with their wildlife veterinarian mother and photographer father, but this time their hands are full with a foster child called Lucky Deal. As Lucky and Jack become friends, Ashley becomes suspicious: What did Lucky take from the burn site? Who did she call in the night? In a midnight showdown at Spruce Tree House, Jack realizes there's more to fear than a killer cat. Cliff-Hanger weaves Native American folklore, natural science, and geography into a heart-pounding thriller. The afterword by Will Morris, Chief of Interpretation and Visitor Services at Mesa Verde, outlines the dangers of cougar attacks and the need to protect wild animals.

The Clones (The Virtual War Chronolog #2)

by Gloria Skurzynski

Corgan now lives on the tropical Isle of Hiva, his reward for winning the Virtual War with his genetically altered teammates Sharla and Brig. Sharla visits him and tells him Brig died--but she has created clone-twins with Brig's DNA. Sharla and Corgan discover that while the clones look identical and are growing at a terrifying rate, they couldn't be more different in temperament.

Cyberstorm

by Gloria Skurzynski

In 2015, when Darcy Kane moves to another part of town, she discovers that the Animal Control Division is trying to take her dog away and that the most obvious escape is into her neighbor's Virtual Reality Rent-a-Memory machine.

Deadly Waters

by Gloria Skurzynski Alane Ferguson

The Landon family is Southbound-headed for Florida to investigate a mysterious illness plaguing endangered manatees in Everglades National Park. Jack, Ashley, and their friend Bridger soon find themselves in deadly waters with a seven-foot shark, an injured manatee-and a mystery to solve. Who was the stranger in the speedboat who snatched Jack's camera? And what does he have to do with the manatees? Join the heart-stopping chase through a maze of mangrove islands to find out!

Escape from Fear

by Gloria Skurzynski Alane Ferguson

Something in the Virgin Islands National Park is destroying the coral reefs and causing the hawksbill sea turtle to disappear--and the Landons are trying to figure out what. Jack and Ashley soon become involved with the son of a U. S. diplomat who is anxious to save an island woman. What secret do they share? Includes a park map.

Ghost Horses

by Gloria Skurzynski Alane Ferguson

Life-threatening accidents keep plaguing the Landon family as they investigate the mysterious deaths of white mustangs at Zion National Park in Utah. Even before they get to the park, Jack Landon knows that Ethan Ingawanup spells trouble. Things start to go awry after Ethan and his sister-two Shoshone kids-are placed in the Landons' care. The questions begin to mount after Ethan teaches Jack and Ashley the ancient Ghost Dance: Are all the hair-raising events just coincidental? Or is there some strange magic in the dance ritual? The answers await in the raging waters of a slick-rock canyon called The Narrows. The afterword by Lyman Hafen of the Zion Natural History Association discusses white mustangs and public lands in Utah.

The Hunted

by Gloria Skurzynski Alane Ferguson

Grizzly cubs are disappearing from Glacier National Park, and the Landon family must figure out why! But for Jack, the real mystery is his sister Ashley's strange behavior. What was she doing alone in the woods so early in the morning? And why did she lie to their parents? Jack's efforts to unravel the truth lead to a pulse-pounding adventure that brings the Landon kids face to face with an enraged grizzly-as Jack and his sister suddenly become the hunted.

The Minstrel in the Tower

by Gloria Skurzynski

In this gripping medieval page-turner, Roger and his sister Alice are kidnapped and held for ransom in an ancient tower. To escape and find their uncle, the children must summon all their courage and imagination. "Designed as easy-reading material for middle-graders, this has the virtues of an attractive format and illustrations, a fast plot, and even a feminist fillip: Alice is the more intrepid of the siblings, Roger's gifts are for music and ventriloquism. "--Bulletin, Center for Children's Books. From the Trade Paperback edition.

Mysteries in Our National Parks: Buried Alive

by Gloria Skurzynski Alane Ferguson

Who was that man in the Park Service uniform who brought Jack and Ashley Landon into the wilds of Alaska's Denali National Park along with their friend Nicky Milano? Whoever he was, he has given them a dogsled ride to certain death unless somebody finds them soon. Their troubles are about to get a whole heap deeper as the first rumblings of an avalanche turn into a deafening roar!From the Paperback edition.

Mystery of the Fire in the Sky (Mystery Solver Series)

by Gloria Skurzynski Alane Ferguson

One night Caitlin sees a giant fireball in the sky. The fireball crashes soundlessly to earth -- and disappears! At first Caitlin thinks that a plane has crashed, but there are no reports of missing planes.

Mystery of the Haunted Silver Mine (Mystery Solver Series)

by Gloria Skurzynski Alane Ferguson

A group of Science Club friends solve the mystery of the "haunted" silver mine by using scientific principles in this first chapter book in the tradition of Encyclopedia Brown.

Mystery of the Spooky Shadow (Mystery Solver Series)

by Gloria Skurzynski Alane Ferguson

Caitlin and her friends in the Science Club are thrilled when they discover a valuable Native American statue while on a field trip. But when the statue disappears, Caitlin's best friend, Joe Daniel is accused of stealing it!

Night of the Black Bear

by Gloria Skurzynski Alane Ferguson

This thrilling series roars back to life with the release of Mystery #13,Night of the Black Bear. Something very strange is going on in Great Smoky Mountains National Park. A teenage girl is the latest victim in a growing number of bear attacks. Officials must figure out what's causing the bizarre bear behavior or close the park. Can the Landons help? Soon Jack and Ashley are searching for answers with their new friends Yonah Firekiller, a 16-year-old Cherokee boy, and 14-year-old Merle Chapman, whose family once lived on park land. But a heated argument over ancestral land rights puts the Landon kids in the middle of a clash of cultures. Tensions mount when Merle is caught in a lie--a lie that leads straight to the heart-pounding solution. This breathtaking new adventure features an afterword by a park naturalist on black bear behavior and the problems caused by tourists feeding wildlife. Night of the Black Bearis a fast-paced narrative treat filled with vivid descriptions of the natural, scientific, and cultural phenomena of Great Smoky Mountains National Park; a page-turner that will put this popular National Park high on the vacation wish-list of all young readers.

Out of the Deep

by Gloria Skurzynski Alane Ferguson

A baby whale is the latest mammal stranded on the beaches of Acadia National Park. When the Landons run to get help, they don't notice Bindy Callister slip away. When they track her down, she's acting strange-she knows the strandings are no accident. She even knows those responsible. But she's too scared to tell. Time is running out; and now the kids too are in real danger-unless Bindy talks!

Over the Edge

by Gloria Skurzynski Alane Ferguson

Wildlife veterinarian Olivia Landon has been asked to help find the source of the lead shotgun pellets that are poisoning the few remaining California condors in Grand Canyon National Park. After she announces a plan, Olivia receives a death threat on her laptop. The plot soon thickens to involve the Landon kids, Jack and Ashley, and the family's temporary ward-15-year-old Morgan Rogers, a rebellious self-proclaimed anarchist and computer buff. Tension mounts when the e-mail threat is almost carried out and Morgan is the only witness. The following investigation leads readers on a trip through Morgan's cyberworld connections and builds to a thrilling conclusion.

Rage of Fire (Mysteries in Our National Parks: Volcanoes)

by Gloria Skurzynski Alane Ferguson

On vacation in Hawaii, 12-year-old Jack and his sister Ashley are swept up in a mystery with Danny, a young boy from Vietnam, in Volcanoes National Park.

The Revolt (The Virtual War Chronolog #3)

by Gloria Skurzynski

What do you do when someone truly hates you? Corgan is used to being the hero. Leader of the team that won the Virtual War, he chose for his reward to live on the Isles of Hiva, in an idyllic paradise. Idyllic until the clones, Brigand and Cyborg, arrived, that is. Life hasn't been the same for Corgan since. Now he's lucky if his former fans even remember his name. But more worrisome is that he has an enemy, a mortal enemy in the form of Brigand, who has taken over not only Corgan's mantle as the most well-known person in the Domes, but has taken Corgan's girlfriend, Sharla, away too. When Brigand tried to kill Corgan back in the Wyo-Dome and failed, Corgan thought he would be free of Brigand at last. But now the power-obsessed Brigand has followed him to Florida, determined to rule the Domes and finish Corgan off for good. Corgan escaped from Brigand once, but can he do it again? And more importantly, does he even want to escape this time? So now Corgan's got two choices. He can fight and risk getting killed or, worse, captured by Brigand. Or he can walk away and take Sharla with him... if he can figure out how to use a spacecraft that hasn't been flown in more than fifty years. Picking right up from where The Clones left off, this fast-paced sequel will not disappoint Gloria Skurzynski's eager fans.

Running Scared

by Gloria Skurzynski Alane Ferguson

An invitation to study the declining bat population takes the Landons to Carlsbad Caverns National Park. With them is Sam, a young foster child. As Jack, Ashley, and Sam tour the underground wonders, a park worker suffers a seizure. The kids try to stay calm, but they know it will be a matter of only minutes before the candle burns down, leaving them in total darkness. It is definitely time to panic!

Spider's Voice

by Gloria Skurzynski

"I need a servant who doesn't talk." Thus speaks Abelard, outspoken and passionate church scholar. So Spider, mute and small, is saved from mutilation and poverty to keep watch as Abelard and his beautiful and gifted pupil Eloise commence one of the greatest love stories of all time. With a quick wit and a talent for listening well, Spider gradually learns to read and write from his famous teachers, and in the end, finds his own unique voice, as well as his place in history as witness to a great love. Set against the backdrop of often frighteningly barbaric, always colorful medieval France, Spider's story is one you'll never forget.

The Tempering

by Gloria Skurzynski

An adolescent must choose between the mills and his education.

This is Rocket Science

by Gloria Skurzynski

. . three, two, one. . . we have liftoff! From the award-winning author ofAre We Alone?comes a title to propel young imaginations far into space. This Is Rocket Scienceexplores the past, present, and future of space travel. The compelling text-vetted by NASA scientists-is a combination of history, science, human drama, and future challenges. Readers learn how fireworks in ancient China developed into the fire arrows used by Genghis Khan; we meet Sir Isaac Newton, Jules Verne, H. G. Wells, and learn how their imaginations shaped rocketry. We revisit the era of Sputnik, the satellite that launched a superpower space race, ending with moonwalks and a rendezvous in space. Finally we look forward to the future challenges of Mars and beyond. We also get a sneak peek at new technologies like space elevators, solar snails, ramjets, and more.

Trapped in the Slickrock Canyon

by Gloria Skurzynski

Usually antagonistic, Gina and Justin, twelve-year-old cousins, come to a better understanding of each other during a night trying to survive a flash flood and other dangers in the western mountains.

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