Aliens on Vacation
By Clete Barrett Smith
Published 2011 by Disney
Yet another of the 2013 Bluebonnet nominees, this is a book I probably wouldn't have picked up otherwise. Scrub (also known as David) is being forced to spend his summer with his grandmother at her totally whacked-out hotel - the Intergalactic Bed and Breakfast. This is pretty much the last thing he wants to be doing. But Scrub soon finds out that the space theme may be for more than just show...
Aliens and space-y things are not really my cup of tea. I can't really explain it to you but it's a pretty safe bet I'm not going to be interested if it takes place in space or aliens are involved. However, I was a little less hesitant about this one because it received a pretty good review from one of my favorite book blogs. I agree with a lot of what they said in their review - this book is fun. Scrub is a main character that you can easily relate to and who you want to see succeed. My favorite thing about this book, though, is that it's not just about a boy who has to deal with aliens on earth - it's a story about a boy who feels alone, who wonders if he actually likes being called Scrub, who begins to understand himself a little better over this summer. It's also about a boy who doesn't know how to talk to girls but desperately wants to figure it out. This is, at its heart, a really wonderful coming-of-age story. Scrub (or David, you'll find out if you read it) begins to question his life at home while spending the summer with his grandmother - where things are totally different, even if you don't count the aliens. This book is very smart and helps readers understand that maybe things aren't always what they seem - and, once again, I'm not just talking about the aliens. A very surprising read for me because I enjoyed it much more than I could have guessed. I'll be looking forward to the next installment and recommending this to kids.