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Orson Scott Card

Earth Unaware (Excerpt)

, || The mining ship El Cavador is far out from Earth, in the deeps of the Kuiper Belt, beyond Pluto. Other mining ships, and the families that live on them, are few and far between this far out. So when El Cavador's telescopes pick up a fast-moving object coming in-system, it's hard to know what to make of it. It's massive and moving at a significant fraction of the speed of light. El Cavador has other problems. Their systems are old and failing. The family is getting too big for the ship. There are claim-jumping corporate ships bringing Asteroid Belt tactics to the Kuiper Belt. Worrying about a distant object that might or might not be an alien ship seems…not important. They're wrong. It's the most important thing that has happened to the human race in a million years. The first Formic War is about to begin.

Laddertop (Excerpt)

, || Twenty-five years ago, the alien Givers came to Earth. They gave the human race the greatest technology ever seen—four giant towers known as Ladders that rise 36,000 miles into space and culminate in space stations that power the entire planet. Then, for reasons unknown, the Givers disappeared. Due to the unique alien construction of the Laddertop space stations, only a skilled crew of children can perform the maintenance necessary to keep the stations up and running. Back on Earth, Robbi and Azure, two eleven-year-old girls who are the best of friends, compete fiercely to enter Laddertop Academy. It is an honor few students will achieve.