|About the Book|
Far Travels is an adventure set in the near future after the opening of a Wooster Gate makes interstellar travel possible.The Ellsworth family—Abby and Tom, age 11, and their adoptive father Oliver— must emigrate to the planet of Gracchia. TheMoreFar Travels is an adventure set in the near future after the opening of a Wooster Gate makes interstellar travel possible.The Ellsworth family—Abby and Tom, age 11, and their adoptive father Oliver— must emigrate to the planet of Gracchia. The Ellsworths become enmeshed in the life of their odd but enchanting new world. As part of the move, they do a house-swap with an alien named Prospero (the aliens have an affinity for Shakespeare), and Prospero gets to taste a bit of life as a suburban American.The adventure on Gracchia begins as the Ellsworths settle into their new life of school and work on the new planet. They begin to experience the wonder and excitement of an alien culture, including seeing a peculiar kind of art exhibit, shopping in a very odd grocery store, meeting the creature that lives in their courtyard pond, spying on the neighbor, and seeing an expatriate Fourth of July fireworks celebration.But the real highlight is the Bonebreaker Race, a thrilling, multi-species event that combines the best aspects of a scavenger hunt and a speed race. Interfering with the other racers is a time-honored tradition. Tom and Abby and their new friends are eager for the day of the big race but disappointed that children are permitted only to be spectators, not participants. Or thats the official rule....Besides humans, the five sentient races on the central trading planet of Gracchia are:Gracchus: The native race of Gracchia, keepers of the interstellar travel Gates. On the surface, the Gracchus don’t seem to have particularly advanced technology. But they’re like icebergs- most of what and who they are is below the surface. They profess a policy of noninterference in the affairs of other species. The Gracchus are small with sleek fur.Aeris: The shortest lived of the sentient species- they live only about 35 years. Possibly the most intelligent of all the races. They’re like quicksilver, mischievous, impatient. The Aeris are fond of practical jokes. They’ve taken to smoking tobacco with great enthusiasm. Like the Gracchus, the Aeris are small, but there the similarity ends. The Aeris have bony frames and pale skin that can mildly change color depending on differing emotions.Nawak: The largest of the species and very connected with nature. The language translator has the most difficulty with the Nawakian speech- many of their thoughts and world concepts don’t carry over well to other cultures. They tend to be even-tempered and occupied with a rich inner life- their exterior surroundings aren’t especially important to the Nawak.Vannevar: In appearance, the Vannevar are most like humans—though most have red eyes—and they’ve taken to wearing Earth fabrics, especially velvet and anything glittery. To the Vannevar, life is the canvas for their art. Everything is a potential subject for their artistic passions: clothing, food, speech, architecture, duels. They quickly adopt new fashions, nothing is done halfway.Elihu: The most enigmatic of the races. To all appearances, the Elihu are insular and superstitious. They do not take part in most of the activities on Gracchia. Their true nature and history are not revealed in the first book.