Urn Burial (Puffin Teenage Fiction)

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9780140373172: Urn Burial (Puffin Teenage Fiction)

In a small village, Ralph, a young shepherd, discovers a weird pile of stones. By digging into the stones, he discovers a strange "sleeping" creature with ointments and a dangerous weapon buried alongside. Before he knows it, he has awakened a dangerous and terrifying secret.

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From School Library Journal:

Grade 8 Up Seventeen-year old Ralph stumbles upon the burial site of a crea ture from another world. The capsule contains not only the perfectly pre served body, but also alien artifacts and weapons; it is these which drag him into an unexpected and terrifying adven ture. His opening of the coffin and his ill-advised experiments with an incredi ble blaster bring other creatures down from the skies; and he finds himself a key figure in an on-going galactic battle between two races resembling large, in telligent dogs and cats. The depiction of these ``dog things'' and cat creatures is impressivley handled. In other hands they could easily be ridiculous and comic, but Westall succeeds in making them realistic and, in the case of the canine Wawaka, frightening. Contrast ing glimpses of the interiors of their spaceship, which reflect the very differ ent attitudes of the two races, are also effective and inspired. Ralph's eventual decision to fight the aliens one last time, on his own turf, brings the book to a thrilling climax and puts the capper on his growth as a maturing character, one who is determined to strive for the ultimate good even though scared out of his wits. The protagonist here is less macho and more sensitive than earlier Westall heroes. He weeps, blushes, feels tenderness for his girlfriend, and is uncomfortable even killing rabbitsall of which render his final success more satisfying. This is an enjoyable, fast- moving science fiction thriller with lots of English country atmosphere , a well- drawn central character, and some fas cinating extraterrestrials. Lyle Blake Smythers, Library of Congress, Wash ington, D.C.
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Publishers Weekly:

Cumbrian shepherd Ralph Edwards disturbs the hidden grave of an extraterrestrial and thereby involves his village in the last stages of an interplanetary war. Aliens resembling dogsthe Wawakakidnap humans for medical experiments; when taken prisoner, Ralph must be rescued by the catlike Fefethil, who used Earth in the past as their warriors' burial ground, and must now undo the effects of their ancient wars. Westall manages to slip an anti-vivisectionist message smoothly into his story, and his aliens preserve their animal qualities nicely (humans do look rather slow by comparison). Though some readers may pause at Northern English idioms and phrasing, the characterization of small-town life disturbed by an encounter with the supernatural is pleasing, often funny, and the adventure doesn't let up for a moment. Ages 12-up.
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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