Earthseed by Pamela Sargent

author’s website   – this book has been optioned by Paramount Pictures

Summary: An Earth group of scientists has created an asteroid ship that will take genetic material far away, and when the intelligent computer finds a habitable planet, it will raise human babies to seed the new world. The story begins just before the new teens will go into training to live on their own and ends when when Ship leaves them on their new world.

Personal Reaction: I didn’t like this one as much as I liked the Dom Testa novel, The Comet’s Curse, but that’s because Earthseed is so dark. It left me feeling hopeless for mankind and I really don’t need any more reasons to do that. I did like the plot twists of adding unknown groups to the population. Regardless of idyllic upbringing, the kids have strengths and weaknesses of body and of character. That’s what I hated… why steal, lie and plot against others? There’s a moment when Manuel might rape Zoheret, and Ho leads groups to raid for supplies instead of trading for them. Zoheret chooses to sleep with Dimitri because he provides her with alcohol. It’s very depressing.

Curriculum or discussion topics: Dystopian literature, character trains (maybe conflict resolution strategies)

Connections to other books: sequels Farseed and Seed Seeker by Sargent; The Galahad series by Dom Testa; maybe Everything You Need to Know about Conflict Resolution by Nathan

Items to display with book: Papier-mâché asteroid, science laboratory equipment, fake stun gun, realistic looking baby doll, spy cam

Food items connected to story: Food of every kind is plentiful from the ship’s dispensers; when kids survive on their own – Beef jerky, eggs, fish, vegetables, etc.

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