Thursday, May 10, 2018

The Alien Next Door: The new kid by A. I. Newton, illustrated by Anjan Sarkar

There's a new kid in school and he's having trouble fitting in. Zeke, the new kid, wishes he could go back home to Tragas. He wishes his parents didn't move around all the time. He wishes he wasn't always the new kid. But his next-door neighbor isn't worried about Zeke's feelings; Harris is pretty sure that Zeke is an alien!

The viewpoint alternates between Zeke (yes, he's an alien. Looks kind of like a squid.) and Harris (African-American) with some input from Harris' more level-headed friend, Roxy (possibly Latina). Harris doesn't like new things any more than Zeke does, but in his world Zeke IS the new - and scary - alien thing! In the end, Harris and Zeke decide they can be friends, even though Zeke still misses home and Harris is determined to prove that Zeke is really an alien.

The book is heavily illustrated with black and white art, showing Zeke's confusion trying to deal with unfamiliar earth things and Harris' suspicion. The font is dark, a slightly larger font and would be a good choice for readers ready to try chapters and those who are voracious readers of series.

Verdict: Hand this to fans of Wendy Mass' Space Taxi and readers who enjoy funny school stories. A good addition to fill out your beginning chapter section if you're looking for more titles.

ISBN: 9781499805598; Published March 2018 by little bee; Borrowed from another library in our consortium

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