Saturday, December 10, 2011

QUICK REVIEW: "Noah Zarc: Mammoth Trouble" - by D Robert Pease

by D Robert Pease

REVIEWED BY: Books4Tomorrow

Noah lives for piloting spaceships through time, dodging killer robots and saving Earth's animals from extinction.

Life couldn't be better.

But the twelve-year-old time traveler learns it could be a whole lot worse. His mom is kidnapped and taken to Mars; his dad is stranded in the Ice Age; and Noah is attacked at every turn by a foe bent on destroying Earth... for the second time.

I never thought I would enjoy a book written for children as much as I did “Noah Zarc”. What first caught my eye, is the beautiful and appropriate book cover. If I saw it on a shelf in a bookstore, I would’ve purchased it right there and then.

It’s an adventure-filled book chock full of moral lessons for children of a slightly more advanced reader’s age (middle schoolers), but I would recommend this lovely book to young and old alike. Themes such as not letting your disability hold you back, concerns about how we are destroying our planet and how to respect animals, are explored in a fun way, without being preachy, as a modern take on the theme of Noah’s Ark.

I enjoyed all the places Noah and his family took me – from the Ice Age and medieval Scotland, right through to 30th century Mars and Venus, on a suspense-filled journey to save Noah’s mom and stop the evil Haon from killing all the animals in the past, as well as the ones saved by the Zarc family in the present. The part of the story where they travelled to the Ice Age to save Noah’s father, had me rolling on the floor with laughter when it was described how the cavemen, with their primitive weapons, attacked the spaceship. Seeing the events in the story unfold in my imagination, was like watching a blockbuster movie – it was that much fun!

Time travelling forms a big part of the story, but at times I found it hard to understand the mechanics thereof. I didn’t feel alone though, as some of the characters couldn’t get their heads wrapped around it either! Luckily it is written in such a way, that the reader doesn’t necessarily have to understand it to follow the storyline.

All the characters are well defined and easy to identify with – you even feel sorry for the bad guy. Part of a close-knit family, Noah is a twelve year old boy who pretty much takes life for granted – as kids do at that age. Even though he is a paraplegic, focus is placed on his talents, courage and wit, and how certain responsibilities are placed on his shoulders, even though he is in a “wheel chair”. The characters grow throughout the story, and by the end of the book, these characters have different points of view than they did at the start of the book.

I had loads of fun reading this book. Lots of unpredictable twists; a few family secrets; the true-to-life banter between Noah and his siblings; the honesty and realism of the characters; cool space-age gadgets; vivid and beautiful descriptions of the different environments; the concept and moral lessons of the story; and how it really got me thinking about ecological issues – were the highlights for me.

The only negatives for me was the beginning and ending of the book. Although it is book one in a series, the reader is thrust into the first chapter, not having a clue what’s going on, and it is only explained much later in the chapter. So for a good while there I was confused and felt like putting the book down, although my mind was quickly changed by the time I got to chapter three. Also, I found the ending to be quite blunt. It felt as though the author stopped in the middle of a sentence; and therefore, the 4 star rating.

Overall, I found “Noah Zarc” by D Robert Pease, to be a delightful book and an entertaining, yet also educational read. This book is the perfect excuse to buy it for your kids so you can secretly read it after they’ve gone to bed. 
I have high expectations for the next book in this series!

BOOKS4TOMORROW star rating4/5


Don’t just take my word for it - “Noah Zarc: Mammoth Trouble” by D Robert Pease has received many wonderful 4 and 5 star reviews on (24 x reviews) and GoodReads (16 x reviews). You may view it here and here


1 comment:

D. Robert Pease said...

Thanks so much for this review. I'm glad you liked it. I guess I shouldn't have let my editor talk me into deleting that last sentence I had in there originally :-)