Reviews for Planet Thieves

Booklist Reviews 2014 September #1
In a straight-up space opera featuring lots of fighting and high-tech gimmicks (light sabers!), a teen cadet finds himself in charge of a battleship and playing an important role in Earth's losing battle against a stronger enemy. Mason is more easily bored trickster than dedicated warrior, but when space armored Tremists force their way aboard the SS Egypt and capture the regular crew, he leads a small squad of fellow cadets in a successful bid to recover the ship. His labors are only beginning, though, because not only have the Tremists seized the Egypt's secret weapon--a star gate big enough to transport Earth itself anywhere in the universe--but the colony planet of Nori-Blue, over which humans and Tremists are fighting, turns out to hold a potentially devastating threat to both races. The story's internal logic doesn't stand up to close examination, but fans of Robert A. Heinlein's juveniles or the more contemporary likes of Brad Strickland's Flight of the Outcast (2010) or Max Chase's Alien Attack (2012) will enjoy the melodrama. Copyright 2014 Booklist Reviews.

Horn Book Guide Reviews 2013 Fall
Humans and evil aliens called the Tremist are fighting to control a colony world. When the Tremist steal a powerful weapon, it's up to thirteen-year-old Mason and his fellow Academy for Earth Space Command cadets to stop them. Action and adventure abound in this accessible sci-fi coming-of-age tale. Occasional murky black-and-white full-page pictures illustrate the events.

Kirkus Reviews 2013 April #1
Eighteen cadets stand between the terrifying Tremist fleet and the annihilation of Earth! In the year 2800, 13-year-old orphan Mason Stark and the other cadets are logging time in space during summer break on a routine mission when the ship, the SS Egypt, is attacked by Tremists, aliens that have been waging war with humankind for decades over the habitable planet Nori-Blue. Naturally, the cadets escape capture and try to save their acting captain, Susan Stark, Mason's older sister. What they find is that the Egypt was carrying a gate, a device capable of making a wormhole big enough to move a planet to a new part of space, and that Earth Space Command was planning to use it to move Nori-Blue into our sun's orbit to keep it out of the clutches of the Tremists. The Tremists steal the gate…and then use it to steal the Earth! Can Mason and his friends rescue Susan and the whole of the Earth? And what secrets does Nori-Blue harbor that can change the trajectory of the human–Tremist relationship? With a total disregard for the laws of physics and nearly every other science, Krokos kicks off a series of sci-fi adventures with this overstuffed, nonstop adventure that harkens back to pulpy space operas. Far too many plot points tangle a narrative chock-full of one-dimensional characters who excel far too easily at the heroics they must perform. Clichés aside, it's an enjoyable, if totally undemanding read for sci-fi–starved audiences. (Science fiction. 9-12) Copyright Kirkus 2013 Kirkus/BPI Communications.All rights reserved.

Publishers Weekly Reviews 2013 April #1

A routine training voyage for 13-year-old Earth Space Command cadet Mason Stark soon turns into the adventure of a lifetime, when his ship is attacked by the Tremist, "aliens bent on annihilating the human race." With the regular crew either disabled or taken hostage, it's up to Mason and his friends to rally the other cadets, take back their ship from the intruders, and defend Earth. Technology capable of stealing entire planets is now in play, and neither humanity nor the Tremist are willing to back down. But when the cadets fail in their desperate mission, they make several startling discoveries that change the balance of power, promising to bring peace--or destruction--to both races. Krokos (False Memory) launches this series with skill and purpose, immediately placing readers in the action and never slowing down. The intriguing concept, intense sense of adventure, and high stakes are more than enough to let readers look past the coincidences that help drive the story. Ages 8-12. Agent: Suzie Townsend, New Leaf Literary & Media. (May)

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School Library Journal Reviews 2013 June

Gr 5-8--Thirteen-year-old Mason is on the SS Egypt when it is boarded by the mysterious Earth enemies, the Tremist. They are more technologically advanced than the ESC (Earth Space Command) and have always been victorious in past battles. The Tremist take over the ship, except for 18 cadets, led by Mason. The cadets must retake the ship and save Earth in the process. Thanks to Mason's quick thinking and leadership skills, his team has high-action adventures throughout the galaxy. Along the way there are some conflicts with another cadet, Tom, as well as a nascent romance between Mason and Merrin. Full-page illustrations appear throughout. This book will appeal to science-fiction fans, especially those who are enthusiastic about the upcoming movie adaptation of Orson Scott Card's Ender's Game (Tor, 1985). In fact, the rights to this book have already been optioned by Warner Brothers; this is not surprising as the book reads very much like it was written with the sale of film rights in mind.--Kristin Anderson, Columbus Metropolitan Library System, OH

[Page 130]. (c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

VOYA Reviews 2013 June
Although only a cadet with Earth Space Command, thirteen-year-old Mason Stark finds himself in the thick of an intergalactic war when the Tremists, sworn enemies of the human race, commandeer the SS Egypt. With all adults captured or killed, Mason must lead his fellow cadets to take back the ship and prevent the eerily-clad Tremists from stealing Earth's most formidable weapon and abducting his best friend, Merrin, who bears a surprising and striking resemblance to the alien enemy. To save Earth and Nori-Blue, the planet humans fight with the Tremists to inhabit, Mason must learn to become a leader and take responsibility not only for his friends and crew, but eventually, the fate of the whole human race Excitingly suspenseful and filled with intriguing plot twists, The Planet Thieves offers a science-fiction adventure with a lot of heart. Gripping battles, daredevil heroics and races against the clock make for page-turning fun, but Mason also provides an endearing protagonist whose depth and relationships balance well with the more fantastical parts of the story. The text reworks imagery from some of the most widely popular and beloved science fiction of television, books, and film, but spins these elements into a unique and original space escapade, while also touching on interesting themes of the untapped power of young people and how we characterize the alien "other." Certain to be a crowd-pleaser, readers will wait anxiously for the next installment.--Meghann Meeusen 4Q 4P M J S Copyright 2011 Voya Reviews.