Her father is gone! Taken by the Queen of Compara’s agents. Mara has to rescue him before the Queen tortures and kills him. Instead of the kind, loving father she’s always known, he’s become demanding, critical, with impossible expectations—not just as Father but also as the only teacher in their frontier outpost. Mara would rather scoop zircan poop than listen to another boring lecture about governments on Central Planets. Give her a starship engine to take apart or, better yet, fly, and she’s happy. Now, he’s gone.
Never mind, they’ve had a rocky road lately.
Never mind, Father promised she could go off planet to Tech Institute next month when she turns fifteen, where she’ll learn to fly starships.
Never mind, she ran away because she’s furious with him because he reneged on that promise. Father is her only parent. She has to save him.
Along with her best friend, eleven-year-old Jako, and his brother 15-year-old Lukus, Mara sets off to find her father. Her mentor, old spaceport mechanic, seems to know why the Queen captured Father. In fact, he seems to know her father well. But, does he tell her everything? Of course not. He dribbles out info like a mush-eating baby. Worse, he indicates he’ll be leaving them soon. And Lukus can’t wait to get off their planet. Mara’s afraid they will all leave, and she’ll be on her own. Despite her fears, Mara has to rescue her father.
What a good book! Mara, a feisty tomboyish girl, lives on a frontier world with her dad. There she works at the spaceport after school, and dreams of going to academy off-planet to learn more about the starships she sees daily.
The author skillfully surrounds her with a cast of oh-so-likeable characters. The action is steady, with subtle hints at something about Mara's past that could be the reason her dad was hauled away--and that maybe he wasn't the only target.
Burton does a wonderful job of capturing fine nuances of being an adolescent--the angst of 'why am I feeling this way?' to the 'does-he-doesn't-he-like-me' youthful relationships.
This coming of age tale will certainly hold the attention of middle-graders--and older folks.
I loved Mara, the young but resourceful heroine. She’s a typical teenager, in that she’s convinced her home life is awful. When her father renegs on his promise to let her attend the Tech Institute and learn to fly starships, she runs away, determined to get to the Institute before her fifteenth birthday. But soon after she leaves, her father is kidnapped by the Queen’s forces, and her only thought is to rescue him. Her two friends Jako and Lukus join in her mission. With the help of Basco, a spaceport mechanic and mentor, they manage to escape the planet and find the prison where her father is kept. Though the book was written for younger audiences, this is a fast-paced story that will keep you engaged – and guessing – right until the end!
A fun and easy read. I enjoyed Mara and those that joined her on her adventure. I recommend this for those who like YA Sci Fi with a spunky and human teenage protagonist.
While the target audience might be middle grade, this adult enjoyed Rescuing Mara's Father immensely. It is one of those books that I wanted to read from start to finish in one sitting. I really liked that the main characters, Mara, is a strong, independent-minded girl who isn't afraid to undertake a dangerous quest to save her father. She's loyal to those she cares about and looks out for those less fortunate than herself. I don't know if the author has a sequel in the works, but I hope so as I'd love to find out what adventures Mara and her friends get up to next.