John Christopher – The Tripods: The White Mountains, The City of Gold and Lead, The Pool of Fire
An alien invasion enslaves humans. Classically good. The prequel, When the Tripods Came was published twenty years later. I blather a bit more about Mr. Christopher in my Science Fiction intro tab. His books stand the test of time. I wish more were back in print or available as ebooks.
Kate Gilmore – The Exchange Student
A strong message to take care of our environment is presented in this touching story. Daria is a breeder of endangered species so she is surrounded by animals. She is forced to host exchange student, Fen, from another planet and he is rather creepy. Fen is thrilled with his placement. Animals! On his home planet they ruined the environment so there are no animals. I read this book years ago, but still stop and think on it every day. When I see a squirrel in the yard hanging upside down eating from the birdfeeder, when the flocks of geese migrate over the school parking lot, when the little baby geckos get into the building, I think, what would our life be like with no animals?
Neal Shusterman – The Dark Side of Nowhere
Jason thought he was an average teenager except for the routine injections he had to take. But no – turns out he, his parents, and many town residents are aliens. They’ve been on Earth following a failed invasion. The DNA injections they all must take allow them to appear human. The time appears right for another attempt to conquer Earthlings. Could be that Jason is not on board with the plan. Everything Neal Shusterman writes, I eagerly recommend reading. His stories are fast-paced, full of action with well-developed plots.
William Sleator – Interstellar Pig, Parasite Pig
Barney is all set for a boring summer beach house vacation, until he meets the odd group next door. They appear obsessed with a game called Interstellar Pig. I really don’t want to say any more. The plot is unique. Plenty of twists and turns in this, but giving too much away here would ruin it. Parasite Pig is the sequel and is okay. Interstellar Pig is by far the better story and should be read by anyone wanting a wild adventure. I have read many of William Sleator’s books. All are way out there with clever and original ideas.