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Ada Lace, on the Case

Ada Lace, on the Case

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Ada Lace, on the Case

4.5/5 (3 évaluations)
92 pages
59 minutes
Aug 29, 2017


From Emily Calandrelli—host of Xploration Outer Space, correspondent on Bill Nye Saves the World, and graduate of MIT—comes the first novel in a brand-new chapter book series about an eight-year-old girl with a knack for science, math, and solving mysteries with technology.

Ada Lace—third-grade scientist and inventor extraordinaire—has discovered something awful: her neighbor’s beloved Yorkie has been dognapped!

With the assistance of a quirky neighbor named Nina (who is convinced an alien took the doggie) and her ever-growing collection of gadgets, Ada sets out to find the wrongdoer. As their investigation becomes more and more mysterious, Ada and Nina grow closer, proving that opposites do, in fact, attract.
Aug 29, 2017

À propos de l'auteur

Emily Calandrelli is an executive producer and the host of Xploration Outer Space, where she shows viewers the most exciting projects in the space industry today and a correspondent on the new series, Bill Nye Saves the World. Emily has a technical background with mechanical and aerospace engineering degrees from West Virginia University and Master’s degrees in aeronautics and astronautics as well as technology and policy from MIT. Emily is a professional speaker and writer and is passionate about exciting students and their families about science and space exploration. Emily is also deeply passionate about getting more girls interested in STEM and STEM careers. She lives in San Francisco. Learn more at TheSpaceGal.com.

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Aperçu du livre

Ada Lace, on the Case - Emily Calandrelli


Chapter One


Ada was sick of sitting. She was sick of the cast on her leg. She was sick of watching the world go by without her. She should be outside, exploring the neighborhood and researching the local wildlife, but she was stuck inside. And it was her own fault.

Their first week in San Francisco, Ada had attempted a bungee jump from a eucalyptus tree in the park. It was a jump she could have made with no bungee. The bungee was capable of stretching 50 percent of its length with her attached to it, but the branch was barely high enough to make the line taut. It was a careless mistake.

While Ada was brooding, her mom came in.

Do you think you might come have breakfast with me before I go? her mother asked.

I guess so. I was hoping we could skip the good-bye part, said Ada.

I’ll only be gone for a few days, said Ada’s mom. These artists need a little bit of handholding. They aren’t as tough as you are. I’ll be back in time for your first day at school.

Ada attempted a smile and, on her crutches, followed her mom down the stairs only to be nearly flattened by her brother, Elliott, outside the kitchen. He was wearing an eyepatch and a vest. A stuffed parrot hung lamely from his shoulder. Ada had been reading Treasure Island with Elliott. Now Elliott was determined to find buried treasure. Until then he was dressing the part.

Easy there, mate, said Ada’s mom. You almost capsized your sister.

Yarr! said Elliott. That’s ‘Captain’ to you. Get that straight, lady, or you’ll walk the plank!

Tone it down, Elliott, or you’ll spend the weekend in your room, said Ms. Lace.

Sorry, me lady, said Elliott.

Do I have to make you swab the poop deck, Elliott? asked Mr. Lace. He placed a plate of French toast in front of Ada. It had crossed eyes.

Thanks, Pop, said Ada. It was hard to stay grumpy around her dad.

This blasted parrot won’t sit! said Elliott.

You need to secure his tail feathers. Ada wrapped the string around the parrot’s tail and feet then tied it. That requires a square knot. What you had was a granny.

Arrgh! There ye be, Ruffles. Good bird, said Elliott.

Ada, do you remember that lady we met at the farmer’s market? Glenda? asked Ada’s mom. Her daughter’s about your age. They live over on Polymer Street. You should get together with her.

And do what, jump rope? said Ada, looking down at her cast.

Very funny, said Ada’s mom. How about you have her over?

Ada shrugged. She wasn’t in the mood to entertain.

It would give you a head start on being the new kid, said Ada’s mom. She stood, stuffing one last piece of bacon in her mouth. Just think about it. I’ll leave the phone number.

Kay, said Ada. Her mom gave her a kiss on the cheek. Ms. Lace hugged her husband and her son and collected her bags.

Bon voyage! yelled Elliott. Bring me back some gold!

Ada’s mom squatted beside Ada’s chair. Cheer up, sweet pea. You’ll be the queen of Juniper Garden before you know it.

Chapter Two


After her mom left, Ada returned to her room to unpack the last few boxes. As she opened the first one, she was lost in a sea of memories. In it were soil samples, rocks, and some pressed leaves from the woods by her old house in West Virginia. The whole box smelled like West Virginia. There was also last year’s science project, which she’d worked on with her friend Anna. Anna and Ada had been partners in everything. They’d

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  • (4/5)
    New to San Francisco, Ada is prompted by her mother to make friends with Nina, a neighborhood girl around her age. Nina is more of a 'free spirit,' while Ada is rigorously scientific. But when Nina suggests that the neighborhood is like an ecosystem, Ada is intrigued and starts studying her surroundings more thoroughly. And when a neighbor is spotted without her loyal dog by her side, Ada and Nina fear the worse. They begin investigating the case of the dognapping. This book had a lot of pluses. Ada and Nina are both likeable characters, albeit with very different personalities. Ada shows young readers how interesting science can be, with gecko gloves, tablets, drones, etc. smattering the pages of this book. (Even her name appears to be a callback to famous scientist Ada Lovelace). Some notes at the back of the book go into a little bit more detail about the technology featured in its pages. In addition, the book is easily readable, with short chapters and illustrations throughout -- the perfect bridge for children moving away from longer early readers but not quite ready to grapple with 200 page middle-grade novels. The mystery is compelling, and the ending does manage to surprise. The drawn illustrations indicate a diverse community, which is good to see.However -- and this is a big however for me -- the plot of the book so closely resembles the movie Rear Window, just with a more kid-friendly vibe, that it bothers me quite a bit that the authors don't acknowledge this anywhere. Ada's leg is in a cast and she stuck behind her window, looking out at the courtyard and wondering about what her neighbors are doing. Instead of a murdered wife grabbing her attention, it's a missing dog (but note there is a dog who plays a big role in Rear Window as well). Ada and Nina are unlike each other, but manage to have a good relationship despite an argument about their differences, just like Jeff and Lisa in the film. Nina even sneaks into the main suspect's apartment in a daring attempt, as does Lisa in the movie. The parallels are too strong to not be mentioned.I'm not sure if the pros quite outweigh the con, but I'm cautiously hopeful the follow-up book in the series will be more original in its plot while featuring the same selling points of this novel.