Back when I was in the 4th or 5th grade, around 1993-1994, I read a book that was about a child who with a bunch of other people were put into a stasis to travel in a spaceship but at some point his malfunctioned and he was awakened and left alone for years because since he was a child his access codes could not override the stasis chamber of anyone else.

The book was marketed towards that age group as I read it as part of assigned reading.

Does anyone know the title of this book?

  • 1
    More clues, please. For example, what year was it when you were in fifth grade? Was this book new at the time? Was this book targeted at fiftn-grade readers, or was it more of an adult-market book? Commented Feb 5, 2014 at 23:21
  • around 1993-1994 I was either in 5th or 4th grade. The book was marketed towards that age group as I read it as part of assigned reading
    – Xander
    Commented Feb 6, 2014 at 3:50
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    I have read a book with this plot; I remember after a few years he figures out a flaw in the programming of the onboard chess program that allows him to beat it every time, so he becomes bored with it. I also have a strong feeling the book involved a 'mushroom' people who reproduced via exploding into spores, and during the journey back at the end of the book the awakened boy/man deliberately sets the timer to wake himself up so he can vent the mushroom person into space before he explodes and infects the ship. I cannot remember the title, but if any of this rings a bell, it might help.
    – Ananisapta
    Commented Feb 7, 2014 at 14:00

2 Answers 2


Sounds like Sleepers, Wake, by Paul Samuel Jacobs.

The book focused on a boy who, with his family and others, is on a spaceship headed for a new planet. His pod malfunctions and he awakens early, living out about 50 years of his life while the rest of the passengers remain in stasis. Since he comes on board as a child, he has limited privileges with the onboard computer system. The spaceship arrives at its destination and he explores, meeting some not-quite-human children who are the survivors of a previous mission to the planet. The planet itself tries to capture the spaceship, but everyone awakens and they escape, re-entering stasis for the journey home. The main character saves one of the children from the planet, but the friend turns out to have been "chosen" by the planet and grows a lump of spores on his back. To prevent the spread of the planet's essence, the friend leaves the ship mid-journey and the main character goes back to sleep for the remainder of the trip home.


Is it possible you're talking about the Remnants series by K.A.Applegate?

An asteroid collides with the earth and, since it can't be stopped, about 80 people are put in a spaceship and put into stasis, to be awakened by the ship when it finds somewhere suitable for the surviving humans to survive and repopulate.

The hibernation technology wasn't tested properly; when the ship lands it turns out many of the occupants died en route and one child, Billy, was awake for the whole 500-year journey, driving him mad and additionally giving him certain mental/psychic powers.

This all seems to fit the limited information you've remembered.

Edit: This was marketed at young teens but the first book wasn't published til 2001, so if you're correct about when you read it, this can't be it.

  • Many of the details sound like they match, but Remnants was published beginning in 2001. Xander read these books a few years earlier than that.
    – phantom42
    Commented Feb 11, 2014 at 14:10
  • Ah, I missed that. That can't be it, then. Commented Feb 11, 2014 at 14:16

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