I read my first science fiction in 6th grade. I avoided science fiction before than. I really can’t remember why. (I looked for ghost stories, mysteries and historicals.)
But in 6th grade I found a book with a girl on the cover; she loved reading and could lift things with her mind. It reminded me a little bit of that old movie Witch Mountain. I figured a book like that would be pretty good.
From what I’ve read online, 6th grade is a bit late to get into science fiction. But that was when I got into it so . . .
It was called The Girl with Silver Eyes. I Googled it and discovered it was first published in 1980. It’s amazing to me that its been in print for so long. 32 years. Longer than I’ve been alive.
After all this time, I don’t think I remember the book well enough to say why it enthralled me so. I think it was the combination of:
- a kick-ass female character
- powers I would love to have
I really liked how she could move stuff with her mind and how she found friends who could do the same thing and that they then went on to defeat the bad guy. The guy who exposed them to chemicals while still in the womb and turned them into mutants. That actually sounds like how a lot of superheros/villians are born: get exposed to something and get superpowers. Spiderman, the Incredible Hulk, the Fantastic Four . . .
I wanted superpowers. (In fact, even today wouldn’t object to superpowers. Possibly telekinesis.)
Plus, The Girl with Silver Eyes was a fast, quick read. I suppose it is one of the reasons why the fast-paced, exciting reads are still the ones I seek out and the ones I usually like best.
After reading this, I looked for other science fiction books. I found The Gift by Lois Lowery and Madeleine L’Engle. I’ve reread the Gift, but I’ve never reread The Girl with Silver Eyes (mostly because it disappeared from the library shelves) and I think I should.
What was the first science fiction book you ever read?