The year is 1986. I had recently moved (AGAIN) to a different state and was about to start school mid semester. I was the new kid once more. It seemed like just as soon as I would start to fit in my family moved. I am sure many adults can relate to the feeling of being up-rooted and moved as a child, but at the time you swear you are the only person who has ever felt that way.
So...I read...a lot. At first it was to pass the time on long cross country car trips following a moving van (remember this is back in the days before TV's in cars, ipods, cell phones...) But, as I grew older the books and stories I would read would have more purpose than just killing time. Sometimes the books actually changed my perspective on things by telling me a story in which I could so deeply relate. It wasn't a person in my face telling me that "this too shall pass". No, it was a story that I could understand and it showed me that things can get better if you change the way you confront them. I know they seem so similar, but it's a very different thing to show and not tell.
This brings me to the late Paula Danziger's 1986 release of THIS PLACE HAS NO ATMOSPHERE. I picked up the book because I thought the premise of living under a dome on the moon really cool. And it was...totally, but it was so much more.
Danziger wrote a quirky Science Fiction spoof that is at times funny and sad but if anything it is a wonderful coming of age story. The characters are all very realistic in their actions and the emotions conveyed. Readers get to see a teen, who by nature is feels like the center of the universe, discover that she is a part of that universe. Aurora deals with depression and normal teenage angst, but in the midst of it all she grows closer to her parents and realizes all that she can be and contribute to the world whilst finding her true identity.
And, lets face it . . . finding ones identity is a timeless lesson that continues to be something kids, teens and adults have issues with.
I loved this book. I am so happy to see that it is still in print...with a far less cheesy 1980's cover. ;)
Full review: [...]