Operation Red

      Carol Thomas
Operation Red

Bananas, Coca Cola, and Microsoft have disappeared. CyberCity has recovered pretty well from the Great Crash of 2023, and the departments of TechYES and Terrific Technology have everything under control—or do they? Cyberians are techno dependent and losing the ability to think. Ariel, son of Ms President, is determined to fix that. Comic sci-fi, this YA novella is set in 2029.CyberCity is a calm city-state where people are in slow mo. It's recovered from the Great Crash of 2023 and once more technology runs the city, until the event that humans have long dreaded changes everything. Ariel and friends fight technology with technology, and Ms President creates havoc in CyberCity with Operation Red. Traffic lights operate in reverse; teachers turn up to school; and students solve the mystery of the solar plant that produces no energy. The teenagers are heroes.The novel is supported by a free ebook study guide.Extract‘We have a change in routine today, as per this instruction,’ said their English teacher. She waved a sheet of paper as if it were a dirty tissue. ‘In summary, usual lessons are suspended because of Operation Red. The three morning lessons will be compressed into one. You will stay in this room and be provided with a set of questions and a problem, as sent to the school this morning for our part in…this event. Your task will be to come up with some answers to these tasks, using the—tsk—the rather discredited technique of brainstorming. This is where students work in groups and talk about whatever pops into their heads, in relation to the question at hand, and someone in the group writes it all down. How such a loose procedure helps critical thinking, I do not know. However, that is our instruction, and that is what we shall do. Despite the fact that I had a superb comp-vision lesson on the hidden beauty of internet poetry planned for today; well, no matter, you shall do that tomorrow.’‘Good. I loathe internet poetry,’ said John.‘Its hidden beauty is extremely well hidden,’ agreed Ariel.‘I have four copies of the task, so I want four groups,’ continued the teacher. ‘Nita, Penny, Voula, John, come up please.’ She waved the papers at the students coming towards her.‘You will each lead a group and nominate a student to write the group’s ideas. Choose your group—Nita! What’s the matter with you?’Nita chittered nervously as she stooped to pick up the dropped papers.‘Sorry,’ she said. ‘Not used to papers. They’re flat. And thin.’‘Good heavens girl, get a grip, as we used to say. Now, you have the rest of the morning to complete these questions. At the lunch bell, I will take your answer sheets. Very good. Proceed.’The teacher slunk back to her desk, flicked open her computer and immediately went online to browse her favourite internet poetry site, Itmustrhyme.

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