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Cropped image of Planet Comics.

Spaced

By Mark Abraham · Apr 08, 2013

TItle: Spaced
Author: Soren Lardovran
(HarperTeen; 2004; ISBN: 948853-38285X)

Before 12th grade Chattanooga “Cat” Miller-Brown had never been sick even once in her life. Her unblemished record of health was almost as amazing as the choice her parents had made to name her after the place she was conceived. What were they thinking? (Although Cat had to admit: being named “Chattanooga” carried a certain weight when one was also head majorette at Wilson Phillips High School in Cloverleaf, South Carolina.)

Even her best friends Armistice, Appalachia, and Archipelago—“the alliteration is totally a coincidence,” they told everybody as if that were the most surprising thing about their names—had noticed. Cat was so healthy that she had fallen off jungle gyms, out of trees, and even once off a cliff, and had never even once broken anything. Of course, she had never out and out tried to injure herself, but lately she had started to wonder…

What’s a girl to do, then, when she wakes up on the day of her 16th birthday with a cold? Cat certainly didn’t know how to react, and neither did her parents, apparently: one of her Dads feinted and the other ran downstairs to the basement and didn’t come back up for a long time. Cat spent the day in bed, her party canceled, and then a week, and then…she couldn’t remember. How could anybody possibly feel this bad?

…which is when things get weird. Cat could barely think straight, so woozy this strange illness had made her. When she noticed she had grown a tail at first she thought it was a hallucination! At least until her fathers saw the tail too, and she knew she wasn’t making it up.

It’s only after taking some kind of lemon-but-not-quite-tasting syrup Cat can finally think straight again, so her fathers sit her down and reveal the truth: she is an alien princess who they have sworn to protect and keep hidden on Earth. “Is that why I’m sick?”, Cat asks, only for her fathers to shake their heads. It turns out her “sickness” is actually a symptom of the maturation of one exceptional warrior every generation for Cat’s true species. It means that Cat is not just the princess of the Majorans; she’s also their final hope to defeat the evil Time Panic—the witch her Dads are hiding her from—and her army of Dremlins.

But the biggest surprise is that Cat’s best friends are, all three, tutors in the Majoran arts of combat. Can Armistice, Appalachia, and Archipelago train Cat in time? As Cat attempts to control her new powers, can she also hide her changing physique from her classmates? Will she be able to master the fighting techniques of the Majorans? Join Cat on her journey through life, through high school, and into space.

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