Monday, June 23, 2014

MMGM- Little Green Men at the Mercury Inn

18465633Smith, Greg Leitich. Little Green Men at the Mercury Inn
June 10th 2014 by Roaring Brook Press 
Copy from Deb A. Marshall at Read. Write. Tell

Aidan enjoys working at his parents' Space Coast motel, even though he wishes they lived off site so they could get away once in a while. When NASA has a space clipper launch compromised by what seems to be a UFO, Aidan's summer takes a turn for the frenetic. His friend Louis has been obsessed with UFO ever since a car accident (which he claims involved one!) that left him with a prosthetic leg, so when reporter Brita and her sidekick, xenobiologist Dr. Gleeman, set up shop at the motel, he's thrilled. The guests, including Dru Tanaka, who is at the motel with her parents, and Mrs. Fleance, long-time querulous retired resident, get involved in the mania as well. It's all Aidan's parents can do to keep up with the tourists, so they turn a blind eye to some of his suspicious behavior, but the UFO threat turns out to be much more interesting than anyone imagines, and it's up to Aidan and his friends to manage it!
Strengths: This has some VERY good twists and turns, so I don't want to give any of those away. Keep a close eye on Mrs. Fleance, though-- never underestimate a woman in a flowered bathing cap! I loved that both of the #WeNeedDiverseBooks characters on the cover have their diversity play into the story in really unusual ways. The green and black illustrations are perfect for the setting of this book. Probably the best thing about it is the FEEL of summer in a 1950s vintage motel in Florida. Like Michael Beil's Summer at Forsaken Lake, there's a palpable fondness to a childhood vacation spot that makes me wonder what sort of imagination the young Mr. Smith had!
Weaknesses: Had my OWN concerns about the sanitary aspects of keeping an alien corpse in the ice maker, but it's a good touch of grossness that will appeal to the target demographic!

It's Marvelous Middle Grade Monday at Ramblings of a Wannabe Scribe and What Are You Reading? day at Teach Mentor Texts and Unleashing Readers. It's also Nonfiction Monday at Anastasia Suen's blog.

10 comments:

Aileen Stewart said...

Stopping by to say hello. This looks like a great book and I think my nine year old daughter would love it. Thanks for sharing!

Greg Pattridge said...

This sounds like a great summertime read and one many young readers will enjoy. The setting is what pulled me in, Thanks for bringing this one to my attention.

Deb said...

Oh my...you are quite right on the concerns. Oddly enough it didn't enter my head. Now. Does this mean I would keep an alien corpse in the freezer? Possibly.Right next to the hotdogs.

Crystal Brunelle said...

Sounds like I will need to get a copy of this one. Thanks for the great review!

Rosi said...

This one sounds fun. I will have to check it out. Thanks for the review.

Sara B said...

In rural East Tennessee you never know what's in the kid's freezers. A majority of my students hunt or have friends that hunt..... This one sounds perfect for my kids.
Mrs. Brown Loves Bookworms

Kay said...

This sounds like a fun read. I can think of several 7th grade boys I taught last year who would have devoured this book!

Suzanne Warr said...

Fun! I went through a slightly space-obsessed stage for awhile as a child, and probably would have loved this book! As is, I'm sure I'll still enjoy it, and will appreciate the finer details you've outlined. Thanks for the recommend, and happy MMGM!

Tammy and Clare said...

We didn't know about this book. Thanks for recommending it. We just ordered it from the library.

Myra Garces Bacsal said...

Now this one sounds like a real fun MG novel. We're going to have an Aliens/OuterSpace reading theme sometime soon. Will be on the lookout for this one.

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