It's the year 2071 and eleven year-old Kia Krumpet is determined to build her 67 inventions, but she won't have the opportunity to unless she earns a spot at PIPS, the Piedmont Inventor's Prep School. Kia, who has trouble making friends at school, has dreamed of winning the Piedmont Challenge and attending PIPS ever since she learned that her Grandma Kitty won the very first Piedmont Challenge. After she and four of her classmates are selected to compete for a spot at PIPS, they travel by aero-bus to Camp Piedmont to solve a task against forty-nine other state teams to earn their place at the best inventor's school in the country.
I like how inspirational this novel is; it promotes that we should always strive to achieve our goals and dream. Being creative, inquisitive, not following the norm, being cooperative, and dauntless are just some of the lessons that kids will learn on this novel.
If you are looking for a present to your child who is in middle grade or if you want him to read more – this book is a highly recommend.
Be Curious. Be Creative. Be Collaborative. Be Colourful. Be Courageous.
Spin the Golden Light Bulb is Jackie Yeager’s debut novel. I’ve been having lots of luck finding brilliant debut novels recently and this middle grade novel is no exception. Jackie Yeager takes us on a journey to 2071, where people travel by aero-car and kids are referred to at school by their number, not name.
Kia Krumpet’s number is 718, she has an ex-best friend and no one at her school, Crimson Elementary School, has ever won a Golden Light Bulb in the Piedmont Challenge. If Kia doesn’t secure one of the coveted Piedmont Challenge positions, she won’t be able to enrol in her dream school, Piedmont Inventors Prep School (PIPS).
Instead, she’ll face programming like everyone else, and she can’t imagine anything worse. Programming determines which one of six academic categories sixth graders will study for the next six years - Art Forms, Communication, Earth and Space, Human History, New Technology, and Math.
Kia has dreamed of attending PIPS since discovering her Grandma Kitty won the first Piedmont Challenge. Kia has a list of 67 inventions she wants to create but unless she is successful in gaining entry to PIPS she’ll never have the chance.
I loved so many things about this book:
* The fact that the main character is a young girl who strives to be given the opportunity to attend the school of her dreams
* Being smart is a good thing!
* Being good at more than one academic area is a great thing!
* While academics is really important, so is character and creativity!
* It’s okay to be passionate about anything - inventing, mechanics, art, whatever you love
* The creativity of all of the inventions described is wonderful and makes your brain smile
* The kids, especially funny, loyal and forgiving Anders
* Learning to be a good friend, family relationships, loyalty, teamwork, forgiveness, working hard and having fun are all explored
* Nacho Cheese Ball. I guarantee you’ll want to try this sport when you read about it
* The writing style. I found myself slipping into this world very easily and found the characters interesting and relatable, and the plot engaging
* The illustrations. Gabrielle Esposito has really captured the essence of the book in her illustrations. They’re fun, imaginative and correspond well with what’s happening in the chapters.
My only real grumble with this book is that the separation of tasks whilst making the set piece and costumes was so clichéd. The girls made the costumes and the boys made the set piece. I had some hope when Mare knew about the best types of wood to use because of her experience with her father’s constructions work, but when it came time to build and work on the mechanics of their project it was a job for the boys.
I came away from reading this book wanting to strive to achieve my goals (and to believe in myself while I’m working towards them), to be a better friend, to have more fun and to add Jackie Yeager to my ‘read this author’s next book regardless of the blurb’ list. The way this book ends leaves plenty of room for a sequel, which I’d be very interested in getting my hands on.
Favourite sentence: “Being courageous is the opposite of what it means to conform.” (28%)
I received a copy of this book from NetGalley (thank you so much to NetGalley and Amberjack Publishing for the opportunity) in exchange for honest feedback.
I received a copy of this book from Netgalley, in exchange for an honest review.
Invention competitions, teamwork and lots of good feeling - a great book for kids!
I love books that promote great behaviour, without coming across as 'lecturey'. I also love books with plenty of imagination and inventiveness. Fortunately for me, Spin the Golden Light Bulb had both of these qualities in abundance!
Kia is a top student at her school in New York - in the future. She's desperate to win a Golden Light Bulb, and earn her place at Piedmont Academy, where she'll compete with her fellow team-members to come up with a winning invention.
After a sterling performance, she wins her place, and ends up on a team with Ander (a bit of a goofball), Jax (the serious one), Mare (who is a little bit mardy) and Jillian. Together, they work to come up with a winning project, whilst enjoying all the wonders of the academy; from sparkling air filters in their bedrooms, to Nacho Cheese Ball games.
I loved the book's inventiveness - it's got some great concepts, without being too over-the-top or unbelievable. I also loved the central messages; that teamwork, listening to one another, and being understanding and adaptable can win the day. These are all great messages for kids to hear, and this book slips them in perfectly, without coming across as preachy.
Rating 2.5/5 This is middle grade novel that deals with creativity and accomplishing goals. I won't be describing the book because I don't want to spoil it but it was fun, different, very interesting. I did had the problem that I found it a bit slow, thing didn't happen that quickly. Probably for the audience the book is intended would work. But overall I found it enjoyable.
Kia Krumpet, aka #718, has a dream, and she knows how to fulfill it. She wants to invent the world's first underwater bubble bike or muffin baking pants or one of the other sixty-seven innovative things she has running around in her head. Kia thinks that her path to success lies in getting accepted into the Piedmont Inventors Prep School. Otherwise, she'll be programmed against her will into an area chosen for her and not by her, like all the other eleven year old students in America in 2071.
The only way into PIPS is to win the Golden Light Bulb trophy at the Piedmont Challenge. From the very first local challenge all the way to the national finals, we bite our nails along with Kia as she and her teammates, the Crimson Five, face challenges, disagreements, betrayals, and setbacks in an attempt to work together to solve a complicated problem and to present their solution to the judges. This reader was so invested in Kia's journey that I had to really fight the impulse to read ahead to find out if Kia's team won.
Spin the Golden Light Bulb successfully combines enchanting magical surroundings such as aerocars, sparkling bedchambers, floating games, and robotic monkeys with traditional values such as cooperation, friendship, honesty, and hard work.
Even before I read that there would be a sequel, I found myself wanting to spend more time with the Crimson Five. This book will definitely inspire mid-grade readers to "Think more, work hard, and dream big."
I love NetGalley for giving me such gems from time to time. Spin the Golden Light Bulb is a debut novel of Jackie Yeager and what an exceptional middle-grade novel it is! I was involved in the story from the first page itself..
From the blurb, you can get that the story is set in the year 2071. This is the year when people travel by aero-car and the students are not called by their name but the number at their school. This is a story about Kia Krumpet, number 718, and her journey for chasing her dream to enter in Piedmont Inventors Prep School (PIPS) – her dream school. She studies in Crimson Elementary school where no one has ever won the Piedmont challenge. But Kia wants to win that because her grandmother Kitty was the first-ever person to win that challenge. Her grandmother was her role model from her childhood and Kia wanted to be everything like her. Kia manages to secure a place in the team to compete in the Piedmont challenge. At first, she had travel connecting with her group members but slowly they form a good friendship and move forward towards achieving their common goal.
Kia’s team is called The Crimson Five (hence the series name) because her team was the only one to have all the members from the same school. Each of them has different traits. Jax is the calm one with always a computer with him trying to research about making apps. Marianna(Mare) and Jillian are the talented girls but Marianna is the one with almost foul mood. Ander is the naughty one and later becomes Kia’s best friend. I liked how Jackie Yeager has curated the team of children, each with different hobby and passions. Though the common goal of each of them is same, they want to achieve it differently.
Be Curious. Be Creative. Be Collaborative. Be Colourful. Be Courageous.
There were many good things for middle-grade students to learn from this book. Jackie Yeager has thrown many useful information here and there. There is a sentence when Kia is talking about pi and then she is talking about how petroleum should be saved. I think, mentioning such things were really innovative. Kia has been shown as a determined and strong girl which gives inspiration to children to be more like her and try to achieve their dreams. Children need to know that being smart and intelligent is actually a necessity in today’s world. While most of the parents force their children to be good in academics, being creative is also important.
Jackie Yeager has also told the value of friendship and teamwork through her characters. If you have good friends you can achieve any thing you thrive for and if you have a good team, no matter how bad the condition is, you will make something out of it. These are the real important traits that children these days should definitely learn. At certain moment, Kia is loosing her confidence in herself. This tells you that it is okay to have these kind of moments too. But you have to fight back and have to emerge as even stronger.
I loved the imagination that Jackie Yeager has put into the whole story. And the cherry on top is that the imagination is in fair amount. You won’t feel as if it has been over done. There were magical things like aerocars, robotic monkey, sparkling rooms to eliminate negativity, floating gameboard, hidden cameras and many more. None of these felt over the top and perfectly fit the story. I would really like to applaud the author for all this creativity and to thrive children to actually think about such amazing things. In the beginning of each chapter there are different illustrations. I really liked those illustrations. Though not all the illustrations were unique, but they beautifully captures the essence of each chapter in the book.
Final thoughts ------------------------ I am nearly 30, still I loved this middle-grade book so much. In my opinion, this is a must read for all the middle-grade children. I was amazed by the book’s inventiveness and that too in the right amount. I loved the central message that the author is trying to portray- With friendship and teamwork, you can win any day. At first, I was not ware that this is actually going to be a series. Now that I know, I can’t wait to read the sequel and to follow the Crimson Five on their next adventures.
I received this book as a prize for getting a Trivia question right during Kim Chance's debut launch party on Youtube. The question was: When was the lightbulb invented? The answer: 1879. I'm very grateful to Kim Chance for this prize and for Jackie Yeager for providing her book as a prize! It came with two bookmarks, stickers, and an autograph with the words "Think more, Work hard, Dream big!" Since I'm giving out thanks, I'd also like to thank the freezing rain storm which gave me a day off from work, otherwise I wouldn't have been able to finish the book today!
I absolutely adored this book. It's fun and nostalgic and reminded me of what it's like to be a kid with big dreams. I can't remember what my big dreams were when I was Kia Krumpet's age, but I remember that they changed often and seemed to get bigger and bigger. As I grew up, my dreams became smaller and more realistic, as happens with adulthood. But this book is incredibly inspirational. It teaches you that your dreams are within reach, you just have to work harder and get a team to support you. This would have easily been one of my favorite books if I read this as a kid and would have deserved a spot on my bookshelf next to Harry Potter and Charlie Bone. I may be about 12 years older than when this would have been most impactful to me, but it's better late than never, right? Besides, I still have room on my shelf next to Harry Potter and Charlie Bone where it will stay until my young family members grow old enough to read it.
*I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review*
Spin the Golden Light Bulb is a debut middle grade novel centering around the brilliant minds of a group of young inventors. It touches on topics such as teamwork, forgiveness, and loyalty, and how to include those values in the achievement of personal goals in the area of one’s passion. It encourages having a mind that is open to all possibilities and to the acceptance of other people. Images of strong relationships—both with friends and family—and learning to come together to achieve a goal in a fair and inclusive way emanate from every page. This is a delightfully wholesome novel for young readers that stresses some incredibly important and positive messages.
In this novel, we are transported to the year 2071, and follow an eleven-year-old girl named Kia Krumpet. Kia is desperate to earn a spot at Piedmont Inventor’s Prep School—or PIPS—so she can begin working on her sixty-seven inventions. But in order to secure her place at PIPS, she must first win a Golden Light Bulb in the Piedmont Challenge, a feat that has not yet been accomplished by any student at Crimson Elementary. If she doesn’t, she will have to choose one category of study to dedicate the next six years of her schooling to, none of which would allow her to achieve her dreams.
After Kia and four of her classmates end up winning the chance to compete for enrollment in PIPS, they travel to Camp Piedmont, where the next phase of the challenge is to begin. There, everyone competing is split into groups and are given a task that they need to solve through the creation of a unique invention. Kia’s group—The Crimson Five—must contend with teams from forty-nine other states and build something that will prove that they have the talent necessary to earn a place at the best inventor’s school in the entire country.
Forming strong, healthy relationships with others is a key part of this narrative. There are many internal obstacles that Kia and the others must overcome in order to accept each other for the way they are. In addition, we are shown the importance of being one’s self and staying true to one’s values. There were times where I felt that Kia was maybe being a bit too immature compared to how she presents herself most of the time. However, this ended up highlighting how much she changes and matures throughout the course of the narrative.
Yeager’s writing itself is very strong and easy to read. Her voice is absolutely perfect for the age of the readers this novel is meant for. She does a brilliant job of vividly creating a fun and distinctive world that stimulates the imagination. The technology is very unique and exciting to envision—almost magical. Yeager’s characters are multi-dimensional and clearly evolve through all the obstacles they must face. The way she portrays the team gradually learning to work together as well as forming trust and, ultimately, close friendships is fantastic.
One problem that I had with the plot of the novel was with the believability of the team’s first approach to creating their major invention. These kids are supposed to be some of the brightest minds in the country, capable of not only building, but imagining all types of gadgets and groundbreaking technology that will power the advancement of society.
Kia’s previous ideas for her own personal inventions are complex and innovative, and they show off her natural skill and remarkable intellect. However, what the team eventual decides on for their major invention is honestly pretty disappointing. It just felt as if they were not showing much if any of the amazing talent that they all clearly possess. It’s hard to believe that their big idea would manifest in the form that it does.
Now, please bear with me for this next part. I do realize how silly this is going to sound since this is a middle grade novel, so I apologize in advance.
I’m left feeling conflicted over my biggest issue with the plot—the ultimate invention they create for the contest. At first it feels like a really neat idea, giving us a unique way to look into the past and learn in detail about any person in history. Being able to essentially bring the past back to life and explore any individual’s role in society would be incredible. However, the invention itself quickly takes a turn for the worse, feeling quite creepy and disturbing rather than uniquely fascinating.
There is a fine line between innocently gaining knowledge and invading privacy, and this quickly descends into the latter category. It becomes particularly concerning when Kia and the rest of the team use their invention multiple times to access records of things like private phone conversations and incredibly personal information.
Everyone’s right to privacy is a very topical discussion, and this novel is an eerily realistic potential future. This story raises the question of what parts of our lives are acceptable to be made public in a database and what parts should be kept out. It delves into an extremely morally gray area under the guise of a fun and innovative creation by a group of highly intelligent young minds.
On top of all this, they don’t actually come up with any of the real mechanics of the invention—they end up taking a previous team’s creation and dressing it up a little bit. That left me feeling very disappointed, as it completely wipes out the most important messages Yeager is trying to convey through this story. The importance of thinking outside the box, being creative, and achieving a goal through teamwork cannot possibly be shown through what they end up doing. Even the initial project they come up with at least demonstrated those themes much better.
Are these things that a young reader in this book’s target age range would notice? Most likely not. These thoughts are just a mixture of my typical over-thinking and my admittedly very cynical adult view of the world. I am definitely not the right audience for this particular novel and I completely realize that.
Overall, this is a good book for children in the range of maybe eight to eleven. It promotes topics that are essential to learn from a young age, and this story is an imaginative and entertaining way to encourage people to open their minds to all possibilities and understand that they all have the ability to do great things. This is not a novel that will necessarily be enjoyable to people of any age, but I would recommend this to young readers due to the positivity of most of the messages at the center of this story.
This was another wonderful middle grade book that I'm so glad that I was able to read. It was a wonderful chance to get lost in a world where kids want to do well and are moved to figure out their best way to make things happen.
The friendship that was embraced between these kids and the hard work that they had to portray was a story of determination, fun, and love.
I think this is a great story and one that should be shared and read by many.
This book was so good everyone, just so good. It's a middle grade book, but as a semi-adult of 25 years I couldn't stop turning the pages- I just wanted to find out what would happen next! The setting of 2071 was so interesting and just reading about this speculative future (as is any kind of discussion about the future as we just don't know!) through the eyes of an 11 year old girl that so desperately wants to be an inventor but has to win a team competition just to get the chance to fulfill her dreams blew me away. The story is so empowering for young girls that want to get into STEM and I'm so grateful I had the chance to read it. Thank you to Amberjack Publishing and NetGalley for the opportunity to read and review what is sure to become a hyped book in 2018! OH - and according to the author's website there is going to be a sequel! While this books wraps up nicely, there's always more story to tell, and I can't wait for the next book!
Think America's Got Talent where the talent is brains and creativity. Put together a bunch of kids with assorted personalities but the same creative drive and you've got a super competition. Are the Crimson Five, a group of kids who just happen to be from the same school, up to the challenge in the national competition? Set fifty years in the future, the author is obviously one of those out of the box thinkers, when she describes the kids bedchamber filled with floating silver sparkles which just happen to be the invention that won the Piedmont Challenge the year before. They are air-purification sparkles - micro beads that purify the air!
Spin the Golden Lightbulb is filled with challenges both social and academic for the Crimson Five. I felt like I was along for the ride through their ups and downs, and anxiously awaited the outcome while enjoying a glimpse into the future as imagined by the author. My 10 year old granddaughter is getting my copy to read next!
Spin the Golden Light Bulb is a must read for any middle school student! The creativity oozes out of every page and it teaches young readers the importance of being creative, letting your imagination go wild and thinking outside the box. Once you start reading, you won't be able to put down the book. The characters and the plot grab your attention and leave you wanting to keep reading to find out what will happen in the upcoming chapters. Each character is unique in their own way and they each bring something different to the team. It is intriguing to read how the Crimson Five work together and use each others skills to create a performance worthy of winning them a spot at PIPS. Each chapter is very descriptive and it gives the reader a clear vision of what it would be like to attend Camp Piedmont. Overall, Spin the Golden Light Bulb is a great book and it would definitely recommend it!
Thanks to the @kidlitexchange network for the Advanced Reader copy of this book to review. All opinions are my own. It is the year 2071, and sixth grader Kia Krumpet (student number 718) can’t wait for the chance to compete for the Golden Light Bulb award and earn a chance to attend Camp Piedmont. If she doesn’t make it to camp Piedmont and earn the chance to attend PIPS, she will be stuck getting programmed and will most likely have to study math. When Kia, and four other students from her school, win Golden Light Bulbs and head to Camp Piedmont, the competition is on! “The Crimson Five” must work together to answer a question using elements from six academic categories. Only the students receiving receiving 150 points or more will earn the chance to move on to the National Championships and have the chance to attend PIPS. The team faces some obstacles in their quest for the finals, but they learn that if they can “be curious, be creative, be collaborative, be colorful, and be courageous” anything is possible! I love how Kia is so motivated to succeed. She learns many lessons in the story about herself, how to make friends, and how to persevere. This story sends such a positive message for middle grade students. I can’t wait to purchase Spin the Golden Light Bulb for my classroom and school library!
Such a fun book with great characters. I really enjoyed this read. The story is about five students that start out not really knowing each other very well, but grow into a team. It's told from the view point of a single character, but we get to see the way all five of the kids interact and learn about friendship and teamwork. The main plot follows the kids as they participate in an academic group competition to complete challenges. I think the thing I liked best is the way the story shows the kids coming together to really be a team. It doesn't start out that way, and there's friction between the members at first, but I think that is more realistic than just painting a rosy picture. This really felt more like how an actual team of talented kids would pull together to become something special. The challenges in the competition are creative and engaging and I know readers will laugh out loud at some of the silly things that happen (I know I did). There's also a nice bit of intrigue as well when we find out that someone is out to sabotage the kids...but I won't spoil it by saying who. This is a really fun and fast paced story that made me smile a lot.
Okay, raise your hand if you did Odyssey of the Mind as a kid. Yes? Then this joy-filled middle-grade novel is most definitely for you. Main character Kia is plucky and quirky and hilarious, but also gets frustrated when faced with something that seems insurmountable, much like a very real sixth-grader. Middle-grade readers will love the futuristic world and tightly-paced plot, but this book is ultimately a love letter to creativity and collaboration. It dives deep into the mind of an endearing, smarty-pants girl bursting with ideas that she needs to put out into the world. It also has some very poignant things to say about family and the tension between wanting kids to dream big, and also wanting them to be okay if those dreams don't come true. Can't wait for the sequel!
I received a copy of this book from Netgalley, in exchange for an honest review.
I really enjoyed reading this book primarily because it deals with perseverance which I have found to be lacking in some students. The is in this book hit a series of problems and had to work together in order to solve them. I also really appreciated the story because it focuses on working as a group. I have observed that many people are content to work by themselves but have difficulty when they have to share ideas. Hopefully more books are published about this to make it common place. I also like the diversity within this book and not having the gender of the students dictate either their interests or skill-set. I would recommend this book to people buying books for middle age kids.
I greatly enjoyed reading Spin the Golden Light Bulb, a YA story by Jackie Yeager. This story about a team of sixth-grade students in a national creativity competition kept me very interested. As the team faced and overcame several obstacles, I felt for their struggles and rooted for their success. The dreams and struggles of the main character, Kia Krumpet, become important to the reader. The other team members, her family and competition advisors fill out the story with a diversity of individuals that create a future world you can envision, and would find interesting if you could. There are surprises, twists and sparkly inventions that add flavor and detail to the story. If you have a YA Books You Want to Read List, I recommend you add Spin the Golden Light Bulb right at the top.
Hey Everyone! My first book, SPIN THE GOLDEN LIGHT BULB made it's grand entrance on January 9, 2018! I'm so excited to share it with you. The story was inspired in part by my experience as an Odyssey of the Mind coach and my team's trip to the World Finals. Think costumes, props, problem solving, inventions, and creative performances. It's a story of friendship, family drama, and working together to face challenges as you chase your dreams. But Kia, Ander, Mare, Jax, and Jillian's story is so much more than that too. I hope you enjoy their journey and that it inspires you to "Think More. Work Hard. Dream Big!"
This was a fantastic book for middle school students. I found myself eager to read what was next for the characters in the book. The relationship development among a group of preteens was remarkable and definitely my favorite part of this book. As a social worker by profession and a parent of 2 preteens I think this book did a fantastic job of exploring themes of friendship, family, dealing with conflict and the importance of teamwork. The story line was easy to relate to and provided many talking points as my own family prepares to enter the teenage years!
I loved this book!! It was a treat to read it. I could identify with each character, and could picture them as if they were sitting in the room with me. I loved Kia and how driven she was. Anders made me laugh. Gregor made me mad. I was so impressed with the invention from this team and past champions. Very cool how they were all integrated into the story. This is a great read for kids and adults. I hope we see another book in a series!!
I received this from Kidlit Exchange, and this review is totally my own. This is a fun book with themes of teamwork, perseverance, and forgiveness. Kia and her four teammates are competing for spots at a prestigious school for inventors. They are given a theme and a task to work on together. Along the way they must learn how to work with difficult team members, deadlines, and possible sabotage. Secrets are revealed that make Kia question her abilities and worthiness this task requires.
One of my favorite aspects of Jackie Yeager's debut novel is that her characters inspire the mid-grade reader to reach for the stars, dream big, and use their educational and intellectual talents. Through her creatively told story, readers see that achievements do not necessarily come easy, but require hard work and determination. That alone is a valuable life-long tool. Well done!
This is a very positive book for young readers helping them understand that anything is possible and that you always need to do your best. I thought the book was a little simple at times but I will recommend this book to all young readers. Great book and amazing messages and lessons!
I recieved a free digital copy of this book from Netgalley for an honest review. I loved this book! I love the inspiration it creates and the message to always follow your dreams. The friendships in this story were heartwarming!
Fun and inspiring! The depiction of creative collaboration - not cutthroat competition- particularly resonated with me. Readers will be genuinely excited to learn there will be a sequel. These are characters they’ll enjoy spending more time with!
This book deserves maybe one or two stars, if I had not read it all the way through. For the first 60% of the book I had to force myself to read this book with boring characters trying to win a contest to go to an elite school, where they would learn all the things, instead of just one of the main subjects.
Because, ohhh, if they don't win, then they will be "programmed" into only one subject, and ohhh, the main character, KK, or whatever her name is, just can't stand to do, because then she can't invent her underwater bicycle, which she reminds us, oh, I don't know many times, but enough that we get the fricking idea. Yes, you are so so special, and you need not be programmed. You need to go to your special school.
For the first sixty percent of the book, the group works on a stupid project to try to win the competition. And it is not just me saying it is stupid. One of the other protagonaists feels the same way.
If the book had been the last forty percent of the book, it would have gotten four stars, and I would be eager to read the rest of the series. As it is, I will probably forget all about this book once I finish writing this review.
As for world building, yuck. This is the near future, where all children have only numbers when they go to school, they have flying vehicles and if a child wants to go to a school that will let them be creative and have a special education they have to compete for it in sixth grade, and only a lucky few can make it.
But there is no explanation, or anything else that is odd. There are still cell phones, that do what cell phones these days do. Oh, there are other futuristic stuff, but cell phones still take pictures, and you still make calls with them.
If you can make it to the existing bit in the final third, I would say go for it, and perhaps the next book will explain some of these things, otherwise, give this book a pass.
THanks to Netgalley for making this book available for an honest review.
Sixth graders create an innovation fulfilling a list of qualifications for a national competition to avoid tracking in secondary school in this science fiction book. Author deals with some dark sides of teamwork and competition.