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Moving frequently and making new friends has always been difficult for Danny. Then his mother and sister died in a tragic accident, leaving his father a cold and grieving man. Now, even at home Danny is an outsider.
Danny is a troubled teenager who feels guilty and distressed about the recent deaths of his mother and his sister. His highly disciplined and hard-nosed and neglectful military father is depressed and too busy for him.
While being chased, Danny runs and hides in the worst available place, a terrifyingly haunted house. He just barely managed to escape three high school football thugs whose after-school recreation was to beat him, humiliate him, and take his lunch money and anything else they can get.
While in the notorious haunted house, Danny is startled by a young planetary alien who is exhausted, terrified and near death from fleeing governmental police authorities investigating fears concerning UFO's.
Neither has done anything wrong, except, possibly the switching of identities to escape the authorities and the haunted house. To show his gratitude, Kalyde, the young alien gives Danny a magic bicycle which Danny uses to explore the past and the future, life and death and to assist him to understand his father and himself.
Surprisingly, Danny is accompanied by a very wise cat, a sophisticated and philosophical Calico, whose advice and counsel is about as good as he can get.
FIRST RIDE: As the bicycle raced faster and faster, the world around them blurred into a whirlwind of colors. Danny felt lighter and was sure the bicycle had lost contact with the road. But he still felt safe.
A roaring sound like a thousand charging lions was followed by a tremendous clap of thunder. Bright, almost blinding sparks surrounded them, then the world went white for a moment, then turned into a hazy grayness as if they were riding through engulfing clouds. Danny suddenly noticed it was quiet. Where was the sound of the wind?
Clouds parted. They were riding atop a gleaming rainbow. Below were brilliant streaks of red, orange,yellow, green and blue. Forming walls along each side of them was an electric purple. It was so bright that when Danny looked at himself, everything he wore, even his skin, glowed brilliant violet. Murg meowed loud and long. Danny looked over his shoulder. The calico was standing on his shoulder staring skyward. Danny followed Murg's gaze and found sparkling stars in the darkness above. They were riding across the sky to South Carolina!!
The world suddenly went white, then flashed brightly as if they rode directly into a star. The lions roared once more. The thunder cracked as if a giant hole were being ripped in the sky. Danny was disoriented for a moment, then he realized they had done it! In less than a minute, they had ridden from Texas to the east coast near Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.
Readers will identify with Danny, sympathize with his moral dilemma, and enjoy watching him wrestle with the tough choices that come with his magical bicycle powers.
The American Library Associations Booklist
Deeper and more thought provoking than many of the young adult titles being published today. - Science Fiction SF Site
A story to dream with. A delightful fantasy that matches a 13-year old redhead paper boy, his calico cat and a special bike. It brings back all the allure of E.T. The Book Reader
Parents, buy it for your kids! Mercury Register
Great stuff for early teens-aliens, time-travel, hint of romance with a cool girl, bullies who are put in their places. Kathy Heinden, Masters Teacher
The Magic Bicycle is a novel full of rich vocabulary and wonderful fantasy. The vocabular is high level and forces young readers to "touch the stars." As a classroom teacher for fourth grade, I constantly search for rich literature for my students pleasure and to motivate them to "shoot the moon," to strengthen imaginations, and to enrich their young lives. This novel concentrates on all these goals and more. Phyllis H. Pettit
The best book I ever read. Lindis Chetwynd
Danny is a great character with believable feelings and actions. I felt like I was there with him as he won the bike race, as he got chased down to the haunted house and as he soared through the air. Ines Pacheco
I could really relate to Danny. He's a colorful mixture of everybody I've ever known.
This book had a good pace and the storyline was never boring. Also, it's about how a new kid can beat the meanest of bully's, while making the best of friends. Renee Travis
Dewey Decimal: 813/.54
Library of Congress: 9766907
Book Publisher: Otter Creek Press
No. of Pages: 317
Paper Weight (lb): 1.00 lb
Acid Free Paper: Yes
Coated Paper: Yes