Spaceheadz, a middle reader book released by Simon & Schuster this summer, might just feature any 5th grade boy’s worst nightmare…OR dream come true.
That’s because 5th grader Michael K. is in a new town, new school, and a totally new situation: he’s been befriended by aliens. And not just any aliens, but Spaceheadz – or SPHDZ for short. Though he tries to shake them and their strange pencil-eating, hamster-translating weirdness, the two aliens – Bob and Jennifer – are convinced Michael K. is their man. In fact, they believe HE CAN DO ANYTHING! (<–the explanation behind their belief in him is quite funny…you’ve got to read it to find out)
Aliens Bob and Jennifer speak in an amusing mix of infomercial jargon and commercial jingles, and though they engage in crazy antics, they can also turn a George Foreman grill and a See ‘N Say into high-tech communicators. Michael K. doesn’t know whether to run away from them or join their efforts to save the earth, and adding kooky Agent Umber (an Anti Alien Agency worker who hopes for a cooler color-code name like Agent Red) to the mix just makes for more laughs and adventure.
I should say, though, that the laughs are intermingled with a smart story and the use of truly cool scientific interjections (I kid you not – I totally learned something reading this book for 7-10yr olds!). The energetic illustrations also add a fun element to the story.
Author Jon Scieszka is to be thanked for this fun book, which he adds to his popular children’s books like The True Story of the Three Little Pigs and The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Fairytales. Scieszka (rhymes with “Fresca”) is the first National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature, so named by the Library of Congress. He also runs a fabulous website and literacy campaign called Guys Read, aimed at helping young boys become self-motivated lifelong readers.
Spaceheadz is the first book in a projected series, and has a built-in web element as well:
- at sphdz.com you can sign up to become a SPHDZ and help keep the earth from being “turned off”
- at antialienagency.com you can see what the government is doing to face the alien invasion
- at mrshalleyscomet.com you can see Michael K.’s 5th grade classroom’s website
You can also view the book trailer online at the Spaceheadz official page from Simon & Schuster.
*Disclosure: I was provided a copy of Spaceheadz Book #1 to facilitate this review. No other compensation was received and the opinions expressed are honest and my own.
Affiliate links included in this post.
note: the original post included a giveaway