Book Title & Alexandra's Review

Pi in the Sky by Wendy Mass

Middle School
Pi in the Sky by Wendy Mass Alexandra-Adlawan-Amazing Artists-Autism-Author

Joss is the seventh son of the Supreme Overlord of the Universe. His older brothers help his dad rule the cosmos, but all Joss gets to do is deliver pies. That’s right: pies. Of course, these pies actually hold the secrets of the universe between their buttery crusts, but they’re still pies.

Joss is happy to let his older brothers shine. He has plenty to keep his hands full: attempting to improve his bowling score, listening to his best friend, Kal, try (and fail) to play the drums, and exploring his ever-changing home, The Realms. But when Earth suddenly disappears, Joss is tasked with the seemingly impossible job of rebuilding it.

With the help of Annika, an outspoken girl from Earth, he embarks on the adventure of a lifetime . . . and learns that the universe is an even stranger place than he’d imagined.

I can describe this story with one word: Complex!

Like Every Soul a Star, I can’t even imagine how much research must have gone into writing this story. I had to go back and reread some of the more scientific passages to try to understand it all. In a nutshell: the universe is constantly expanding, we are all just a tiny speck of dust floating in the universe, and we take for granted that we exist at all. And lots of other big words and facts I’ve heard on ‘The Big Bang Theory’ but don’t understand completely. Just read the Author’s Note at the end of the book because I am incapable of explaining it all to you. And don’t get me started on trying to explain The Realms. You’re on your own trying to figure that place out.

What I found the most amusing was that out of all the different species living in the universe, the occupants of The Realms find Earth the most entertaining. Apparently, out of all the other living beings in the universe, we’re the only ones who have developed a sense of humor.

Here’s a little side note that some people might get a kick out of. Annika, the earthling girl, lives in Ohio. You might not think this is a big deal, but when your mother is originally from Ohio, and almost every book I have ever read mentions Ohio in some way or another, it’s a big deal. The fact that the last Earthling girl in the universe is from Ohio means something. Ohio is the center of the universe. WOO HOO! GO OHIO! OHIO RULES! O-H! I-O! OHIO!

Each chapter starts with a quote from real-life famous astronomers, physicists, writers, philosophers, chemists, and mathematicians. Here are a few of my favorites:

If you wish to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe.
– Carl Sagan, astronomer

What Carl Sagan is saying here is that the elements inside a pie – and inside everything – came from the birth of the universe. This quote is where ‘Pi in the Sky’ starts.

Every atom in your body came from a star that exploded. And the atoms in your left hand probably came from a different star than your right hand.
– Lawrence M. Krauss, physicist
When I read this quote I immediately looked at both my hands.

And just for fun, I’m including a YouTube link to the Animaniacs song ‘Yakko’s Universe Song’. You don’t have to watch it, but it’s a catchy song and it does an excellent job of explaining that it’s a great big universe and we’re just tiny little specks compared to it.

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