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Interstellar Pig (Interstellar Pig #1)

3.87 of 5 stars 3.87  ·  rating details  ·  1,900 ratings  ·  188 reviews
Barney's boring seaside vacation suddenly becomes more interesting when the cottage next door is occupied by three exotic neighbors who are addicted to a game they call "Interstellar Pig"
Published (first published 1984)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,745)
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Jun 29, 2008 Chris rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: kids that like to daydream
I’m almost ashamed to comment on Young Adult books; I’m afraid that anyone stumbling across this will suspect that I play with action figures, wank it to anime, and collect the free trinkets from cereal boxes, when in reality I only partake in one of these three unsavory acts. However, I also know that 99% of the posts in regards to young adult works published prior to 2001 will be along the lines of “I read this when I was a kid and it kicked my ass! I should dig through that mountain of decayi ...more
Nov 14, 2007 Ben rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: those who churn the windmills of their minds
Months after I read this book and went on to other William Sleator books, I did a report on it by creating the large game board described in the story. I think I still have it in the back of a closet in San Leandro. I do remember than while creating it, I wished the slots I cut, the swirls I painted, and the cards I wrote really would do what they were supposed to do.

Interstellar Pig and Singularity are the two best William Sleator books because they fuck with the mind most successfully. At leas
This book was read to us when I was in elementary school. I thought it was so good that I checked it out again a year ago and re-read it.
P. Aaron Potter
Back in the day, there wasn't much to write about.

At least, that's what it seems must have been true when I look at the Bloody Great Wall of YA fiction which dominates our Barnes and Noble these days. Did I say Wall? Walls. Multiple Walls. They are now separating the YA fiction into genres because they take up about half of the store.

That's a good thing. Back when I was a wee nipper, the only "YA" fiction was horrible, horrible crap like Then Again Maybe I Won't and "Are You There God, It's Me M
Yes, I'm one of those people who really liked this book as a kid. But I just reread it and was pleased to see that it holds up well even when read by an adult. Check it out!

The thesis is that Barney, a 16-year-old human, while on vacation at the beach gets sucked into an interesting board game called Interstellar Pig... played by his three rather unusual neighboring beachgoers. The game's objective is to be the one holding The Piggy when the timer goes off, lest you and your home planet be destr
Erika Lawrence
Erika Lawrence

Sleator, W. (1984). Interstellar Pig. New York, NY: Penguin Group.

Science Fiction


Selection Process: Something About the Author. Detroit: Gale Research


Interstellar Pig is part of a series written by William Sleator. Sleator writes about an inquisitive and adventurous teen named Barney. Sixteen year old Barney has spent an uneventful week on vacation with his parents in a New England beach house; until three new neighbors Zena, Manny and Joe rent the smaller beach cottage
[Reviewed in '04:]

I've never really been one for Sci-Fi books. And then I started reading Douglas Adams. Hilarious, I must say. Of course, you have to be slightly off your rocker in order to maybe slightly understand what the hell goes on in his books.

Regardless, this book is Science Fiction. The only reason I picked it up from the library the other day was that I'd started reading it years ago (sixth grade, to be exact) and had never finished. And I heard the author wrote a sequel recently, so
D.M. Dutcher
Very unusual middle-grade novel. It's strong, even dark science fiction, yet written for kids. Probably one of Sleator's best books, and one that really shows off his style and themes.

Barney is on vacation with his parents. Suddenly, three neighbors move into the cottage next door. But they seem far more interested in Barney's house, and his room specifically. They also play an addictive boardgame called Interstellar Pig. As Barney gets drawn into the game and the people who play it, he soon fin
One of the things I enjoy about this challenge is that I am able to not only reread many of my favorites (which I most likely would never have thought to do), but to read many new books I might otherwise never have read either.

Barney and his parents are renting a summer house on the New England coast. Barney's room is the one which a Sea Captain's brother had been imprisoned after surviving being keelhauled for murdering a man rescued from adrift upon the ship. Not only does the room have the be
Julie Decker
Barney's not too happy about the way he's spending his summer vacation until the glamorous neighbors show up on the beach. Zena is hot and Manny and Joe seem like really cool guys, so he's kinda surprised they want to hang out with a nerd like him, but they start teaching him to play a cool board game called Interstellar Pig. The game's details are discussed heavily, and Barney finds himself playing as different characters while Zena, Manny, and Joe always "randomly" draw the same cards for thei ...more
Nov 21, 2008 Heath rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Madeline or Taylor
Recommended to Heath by: Mrs. Fjord
I read this book when I was in 2nd grade and I really didn't remember much about it other than some pictures I had drawn about it at the time. I found it on for 75 cents so I picked it up. It was a really fast read (go figure) and I was surprised at how much I remembered once I got into it. Must have been where I got my love of Sci-Fi as it does it good justice. Fun, I would recommend it to my nieces and nephews...they can borrow it if they want.
I discovered that this book existed and was one of my wife's favorite childhood books when I was explained the the plot of the film Zathura, an under-rated sort of sequel to Jumanji.

It seemed like from her description that Zathura was a film adaptation of Interstellar Pig, but after some research it seems like the similarities are coincidental.

Anyway, this is a pretty good kid's book. I would have loved it at age 11 or 12. The first 2/3s of the book sets up a pretty interesting mystery and sens
I read this book long ago in my youth, and when my son was asking for some age-appropriate sci-fi to read, I immediately responded with this book and Singularity (also by Sleator). Then I decided to reread them, to make sure they were as good as I remembered.

It is. It's this great little book about a kid named Barney who's pretty much bored by a summer at the beach. But he's got his books, and that's enough to get by, until a trio of people show up in the house next to his, and everyone around s
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kyler Place
Barney is not looking forward to vacation in a boring old house, with only his mom and dad around for company. But that was before he met the strange neighbors next door. Attractive, smart, and fun to be around, they introduce him to an interesting hobby of theirs: a board game called Interstellar Pig, where each player is an alien hoping to gain control of the "Pig". Now that he is involved in the game, how far is Barney willing to go to win it?

First off, I'm not entirely sure whether it is the
I first heard of this book as a child in 1986 or 1987. I liked the title and wanted to read it. I forgot about Interstellar Pig for 25+ years until it was recommended by Goodreads. I enjoyed it but wish I had read it at a younger age.

A nautical ghost story quickly spirals into the Cold War trope of the-aliens-are-judging-us tale. Dated, but kind of interesting.
Brooke Venning
I read this book so long ago... junior high I think. I don't remember exactly when but what I do remember is that out of all the books I've read throughout junior high and high school THIS is the book that has always stuck in the back of my mind because I was so drawn in by it! It was fun and exciting and so imaginative. I've always wanted to go back and look through it again to see how it might read now as an adult. I would absolutely recommend it for junior high kids and after I try to re-read ...more
After reading this, I made my own board game based off of the novel.
Probably literally my favourite book.
Austin Holzworth
So far this book is kinda boring but it also has some exitcment and its a good mystery. the main caricter is trying to fuiger out what his main caricters are up to with this island and this weird game called intersteller pig were if u dont have the pig by the timer is up u will he goes and travles with his nabors to this island were he him self finds the rl piggy.....let the games being

now there all playing the real life game and he is haveing troubles he doesnt know whats going on and ev
Jason (RawBlurb)
When i was a kid, i spent a lot of time at the library. every week or so, we would head to the local branch and walk out with armloads and tote bags full of books. i remember my parents forced us impose a personal book limit on what we could check out.

this maximum limit was a real pain in the ass, but it did force us to expand our horizons and read outside the comfort bubble we were in. this expansion was the only way we could ensure that we would not run out of stuff to read.

i remember that one
I read this book so many times growing up, and rereading it now as an adult did not disappoint. Everything that I loved about the book as a kid was still there, and it was just as magical. I was especially pleased by this because last year, I read the author's latest book, Test, and hated it, making me question whether Interstellar Pig was actually as good as I remembered.

Sixteen-year-old Barney is spending the summer with his parents at a beach house. Three people rent the house next door, and
Mallory Heart
Jul 16, 2012 Mallory Heart rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Jeffrey Kosh
1984 publication

A delightful YA book which I read on first publication, this novel’s protagonist is a rather shy and diffident sixteen-year-old avid science fiction reader. Barney discovers himself in the midst of science fiction come true, while on a two-week isolated beach vacation with his folks. Barney, unlike his upright father and social-climbing mother, may suffer from a retiring disposition and find his greatest joy in reading, but be assured this boy is no reclusive fool. First (and onl
I read this book as a kid in a period where I was looking for YA sci-fi that could provoke philosophical thought and stir my imagination to the possibilities of the universe around me as a number of sci-fi books I had discovered at the time had done for me.

I didn't quite get that from this book. I had checked this book out from the library on a recommendation from a friend who said it was "pretty good". And that is precisely how I would describe it, it's pretty good, even if it isn't that thou
Jan 16, 2012 Ross rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: ages 10-16 and adults who enjoy a quick fanciful read
Recommended to Ross by: read as a kid
A fun YA novel from my youth. It follows somewhat in the vein of Jumanji or Zathura, but Sleator didn't copy Van Allsburg with his concept. Instead of kids getting sucked into a board-game-come-to-life, in Interstellar Pig the board game comes to Barney, the protagonist of the novel. Barney, a bookish redhead who burns all-too-easily in the sun, has been dragged to a beach-house for a two week vacation where he's essentially stuck inside reading science fiction novels.
That all changes when a gr
Aug 27, 2010 Susan rated it 3 of 5 stars
Shelves: home
This was my first foray into straight science fiction and it proved to be enjoyable. The plot only covered a few days so I can't say the main character grew in leaps and bounds, but he painted in a realistic way. The tension grew throughout the story and I couldn't put it down at the end; I was too on the edge of my seat. My only major complaint is the cover; it's just terrible and cheesy looking. I never would have picked this up when I was young, which is a shame.

Course evaluation: Barney does
Like many others, I remembered loving this book as a kid and wanted to re-read it. I was surprised at how good it was, even now. I like that it kept me thinking, playing along with the hints/clues and trying to figure things out before I read them. Obviously, the hints are a lot less subtle now, reading this as an adult, but it still kept me engaged. It's not mind blowing by any means, but a fun and quick read, and for me, also a bit of comforting nostalgia.
Katie Kemple
I first read Interstellar Pig in seventh grade. Twenty years later, when a friend mentioned the book, I had an instant urge to read it again. It did not disappoint. It's a particularly well written, plotted and executed YA with a satisfying sci-fi plot and engaging, quick paced chapters. Sleator's rich vocabulary and keen narration add to the enjoyment. I plan on giving this book to my daughters when they're seventh grade.
Sam Samuleasdaiufaiufb
Mother of doritos this stack of paper held togeter ba gloo is a work of sheer brilliance. Da way it says 1 v 1 me bro while dirnking mountain dew is truly unique. SPAC is HERE. A real 360 NOSCOPE. xX_PIG_Xx is so mlg he drink mtn dew and eat doritoes so hard as light speed bruh. SANIC SPPED he gots so much skill but really dood they dont think it be like it is but it do.

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William Warner Sleator III was born in Havre de Grace, Maryland on February 13, 1945, and moved to St. Louis, MO when he was three. He graduated from University City High School in 1963, from Harvard in 1967 with BAs in music and English.

For more than thirty years, William Sleator thrilled readers with his inventive books. His House of Stairs was named one of the best novels of the twentieth cent
More about William Sleator...

Other Books in the Series

Interstellar Pig (2 books)
  • Parasite Pig (Interstellar Pig #2)
House of Stairs The Boy Who Couldn't Die Singularity The Boy Who Reversed Himself The Boxes (Marco's Millions #2)

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