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A series of Soviet/Russian children's Science Fiction books by Kir Bulychev, highly popular in Russia and the countries of the former Soviet Union. The books are set at the end of the 21st century and feature adventures of a young girl, Alice (Alisa) Seleznyova, and her friends. See the list here. There have been several adaptations. See also the YMMV page.


Books in the series:


Tropes:

  • Action Girl: Iria Gai. Raised as a Wrench Wench ultimate tomboy, then met a guy, turned out She Cleans Up Nicely, and she became a housewife... That is, unless someone hits the Berserk Button. Then, she's a Mama Bear taken Up to Eleven.
    • Alice herself too. Sometimes, at least.
  • Adults Are Useless: often Alice solves a problem the adults were repeatedly failing to solve.
    • Subverted in some installments where Alice fails, and adults (like regular police) save the day.
  • Alien Lunch: Inverted when one of the heroes (dressed up as an alien) states he liked some human food, and someone remarks his species would have had real digestion problems with that. The guy hurries to state that his stomach is prosthetic.
  • Alien Non-Interference Clause: The End of Atlantis.
  • Aliens Speaking Russian
  • Analogy Backfire: In Alice's Birthday, Alice wants to save a planet. To give her more confidence, Gromozeka reminds her of Joan of Arc, who rescued France. Alice succeeds, but is captured in the process. While she awaits her trial she remember that the actual Joan of Arc was executed. Except she wasn't (see Spared By Adaptation below), and of course, Alice escapes.
  • Angst? What Angst?: Alice has many many close calls with death and/or A Fate Worse Than Death, but she never shows any trauma from this.
  • Author Filibuster: Quite often, mostly about history.
  • Baleful Polymorph: sometimes, most notably in There Are no Ghosts and Secret Of the Black Stone.
  • Beware the Nice Ones: Gentle Giant Gromozeka may not be so gentle if his friends are in danger...
  • Bound and Gagged: happens from time to time.
  • The Cavalry: Alice sometimes is rescued by it, though mostly she is on her own.
  • Changed My Jumper: A boy from 1976 ends up in 2082 - and simply tells the people he's dressed up for a masquerade ball. The people buy it.
  • Child Soldiers: in Secret Of the Black Stone, Alice, along with other children is drafted as one against her will.
  • Death World: Lilac Sphere features one
  • Dinosaurs Are Dragons: Mostly averted, though there's one story centered around a new dinosaur species with dragon-like abilities.
  • Doing in the Wizard: quite often, for example in Alice the Detective, Planet of Fairy Tales and There Are no Ghosts.
  • The Dung Ages: One of the heroes is a hopeless romantic. One of the books is about him requesting a trip into the Middle Ages, hoping for Ye Goode Olde Days...
  • Everything's Better with Cows: Skleess the Flying Cow!
  • Fantastic Drug: The Adventures of Alice features a planet where a drug was invented allowing time travel. At first, people were going to the future to check what will happen, but then grew afraid of it and all started traveling back to the best moments of their life. Within a few years, the entire planet was a slum.
  • Faster-Than-Light Travel: Spaceships can fly between different star systems in mere days or hours. Later books mumble something about gravitons.
  • Free-Range Children: Alice and her friends are allowed to wander around unsupervised from the age of seven. By the time she is ten, she already has traveled to other planets (sometimes with no adults or insufficient oversight) and had a huge number of life-threatening situations.
  • Fridge Horror: Secret Of the Black Stone, the fate of other children: hundreds if not thousands of them were killed in the war already, but Alice doesn't dwell on it...
    • Also the children in The Star Dog.
  • From Nobody to Nightmare: Garold from The Underground Boat.
  • Gaia's Vengeance: If you intend to hunt or dig mines on Penelope, be prepared that one day your city will be leveled by an unnaturally localized earthquake.
  • Genius Loci: The planet Penelope. A Paradise Planet. No predators, no storms, no mosquitoes... as it says, "I'm organised the way which is convenient to me".
  • Gentle Giant: A huge alien Gromozeka, who looks like a cross between an elephant, a shark, and an octopus, is a good friend of Alice and her father.
  • Gone Horribly Right: the memory erasure field from The City Without Memory.
    • The Super Cake from The Underground Boat.
  • Hate Plague: Lilac Sphere features one, stored in titular shpheres.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Werther in One Hundred Years From Now. Blue Beard in Draconosaurus.
  • Hoist by His Own Petard: the creators of the Hate Plague wiped themselves out after being subjected to it.
  • Human Aliens: Many alien characters are either humans or very similar to humans. In fact, one book starts with the statement that most aliens are human like.
  • Humans Through Alien Eyes: Penelope is upset when one person causes a mess with its biosphere - and has problems understanding that other people may disagree with what he does.
  • I See London: repeatedly, both oin books and in adaptations.
  • Kaleidoscope Eyes: Rrrr's race has eyes which change color depending on the personality - blue and gray for good ones, yellow for bad, orange for the worst.
  • Kill and Replace: One of the books features an adopted son of an emperor who learned he won't inherit the crown. He assassinated him, and forced a law that everyone is to wear smiling masks.
  • Killer Robot: many times.
  • Lost Colony: The End of Atlantis.
  • McGuffin: many, most notably the Mielophone from One Hundred Years From Now. Alos "the absolute fuel" (whatever it means) in The Mystery of the Third Planet.
  • Meanwhile in the Future: Time travel works this way in the series. Changes only happen when the travel ends or the connection to traveller is severed.
  • Missing Mom: Sometimes stated to be a space architect. Must be a workaholic.
  • Mugged for Disguise. Happens with children in The Star Dog.
  • Naked People Are Funny: Sometimes, modesty has to take a backseat when lives are at stake.
  • Never Accepted in His Hometown; in War With Liliputs, Alice reminiscenses on this: she is hailed as a savior on many plantes , but at home she is "Just a girl".
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Herod: see No Kill Like Overkill below.
  • No Kill Like Overkill: In order to kill a specific bird, the pirates have destroyed nearly all of its species, and even tried to destroy the planet's atmosphere. The bird they were after survived.
  • The Plague: The "cosmic Plague" (literally named so) from Alice's Birthday
  • Plucky Girl: Alice
  • Ridiculously-Fast Construction: Houses are grown (some coral-like bacteria) within hours.
  • Sapient Ship: "Gai-do"
  • Shape Shifter: Rat
  • Shrink Ray: At least two books have such containers.
  • Sliding Scale of Idealism vs. Cynicism: firmly on idealistic side, though the danger of being too trusting are honestly explored.
  • Space Pirates: The recurring antagonists, Rat and Jolly U.
  • Spared By Adaptation: Joan of Arc, who lives (a dummy is burned instead)
  • Starfish Aliens: While most sapient alien species have humanlike intelligence and are able to freely communicate with humans, they may look... somewhat weird. Walking watering cans or giant worms are not unheard of.
  • Sudden Sequel Death Syndrome: The City Without Memory.
  • Talking Animal: The "Govorun" ("Talker") birds are essentially popuguys capable of interstellar flight. Also the titular dog from The Star Dog.
  • Temporal Paradox: Occasionally occurs. In "Alice's Birthday", for instance, the titular heroine saved the civilization of one planet from death by travelling back in time and changing past.
    • She does this during an archeological expedition to the ruins of said civilization. Go ahead, sort that out.
  • Tempting Fate: "Father, what can happen to me in 21st century?". Well the whole series, including Space Pirates, Killer Robot attacks, facing one Evil Overlord after another...
  • There Are No Therapists: well, at least not on Earth. Not that Alice would ever need one.
  • Thou Shall Not Kill: Alice never kills her opponents, even though she is sometimes armed.
  • The Time of Myths: In Lilac Sphere.
  • Villainous Glutton: Jolly U
  • Video Phone
  • We Will Have Perfect Health in the Future: In the time where the books are set, humans have cured every known disease, and even common cold will be cured soon. They also enjoy better health and fitness in general.
    • "Better fitness" as in somewhat super-strength, -speed, and -agility.
  • Worthless Yellow Rocks:Most of the societies are moneyless. One of the stories features Alice looking for a replacement for a 1.5 kg gold nugget she took from the school's museum and lost. Since she has plenty of friends, the next day she comes to school with her dad carrying twelve times the required amount.
  • Write what you know: the author is a historian, so many of Alice's adventures are in Earth's past or in similar cultural settings.
  • Wrong Genre Savvy: Alice's friend Pavel is often this.
  • You Are Grounded;: happens in War With Liliputs.
  • Zeerust: Since Bulychev's 21st century is based on beefed-up Soviet aesthetics, that's kind of a given.
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