Spaced Out (Moon Base Alpha #2)
There's nowhere to hide on the world's first moon base. After all, it's only the size of a soccer field. So when Nina Stack, the commander of Moon Base Alpha, mysteriously vanishes, the Moonies are at a total loss.
Though he may be just twelve years old, Dashiell Gibson is the best detective they've got. But this confusing mystery pushes him to his limits. Especially since he has his own huge secret to protect. With the fate of the entire human race hanging in the balance, will Dash be able to solve the mystery of the missing Moonie?
In space, no one can hear you scream
Dashiell has had it with Patton and Lily, the children of the space tourists, but after he gets in an altercation with Patton that involves using the space toilet to defend himself, Dashiell is reprimanded by the base commander, Nina. When Nina goes missing it's a huge mystery. How far can she have gone on the space station? Everyone starts to investigate, and Kira and Dashiell find moon rocks in Nina's room, fueling the idea that she was going to try to sell them for tremendous sums of money. Still, where has she gone? The group goes looking outside the space station to try to find her, a jaunt which almost ends in tragedy because some of the helmets had been damaged by being used to play football! Dashiell has the help of Zan Perfonic, the alien who can "visit" him virtually and who is very handy when she scares Patton by showing him a vision of a terrifying space snake! Eventually, Dashiell is able to put together pieces of the puzzle and locate Nina, and also manages to find out what the evil Sjobergs are trying to do to the space station!
The mystery is a good one, and Dashiell's use of available clues realistic. The interactions of the space crew go against protocol in some instances, but are probably very true to life of any group of people forced to spend extended time together.
Gibbs is always a pleasure to read. His prose is facile and funny, and my students like his work every bit as much as I do. I love the fact that his series tend to be short enough that all of the books get read (something which just doesn't happen if a series is over about 4 books long), and that the publisher has kept the same style of covers on all of the books. Spaced Out is a great choice for readers who like mysteries, science fiction, or just an amusing read!