- BC Games
Connect with Us
A GOOD READ: Alien invasions: Preparing for Ender’s Game with sci-fi
I’ve always been a fan of science fiction, particularly those stories featuring distant planets and alien races. There’s nothing I find more exciting than sitting down with a good book featuring the mysteries of outer space and possibilities of life beyond our solar system.
As I write this, there are only two months left before the release of the Ender’s Game movie. A popular sci-fi novel and award-winning book by Orson Scott Card, Ender’s Game is one of my favourites.
Listed below are a few teen alien invasion novels that may whet your appetite for good science fiction before the movie comes to theatres.
If you read science fiction for teens, I’m going to assume you’ve heard of Douglas Adams’ Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, H.G. Wells’ War of the Worlds, Daniel X by James Patterson and the Doctor Who book series. Here are a few other titles I would recommend:
The Fifth Wave by Rick Yancey and In the After by Demetria Lunetta are two novels in which the human race faces annihilation by an alien enemy. Both are heavily action-packed and suspenseful thrillers that follow characters who struggle to survive in post-apocalyptic worlds.
In The Fifth Wave, 16-year-old Cassie Sullivan must rescue her brother from the enemy’s camp with the help of a boy who may not be human. The interwoven love story provides a perfect breather from the intense and fast-paced battles.
In the After is a dark and unpredictable page turner — a pure survival tale at the beginning, it follows a young girl named Amy as she finds her way into a dystopian society run by scientists.
Also set in a post-apocalyptic world, Alien Invasion and Other Inconveniences by Brian Yansky is about a boy named Jesse who finds himself among Earth’s only survivors. Yansky gives us classic aliens: little green men with superhuman, telepathic abilities. Soon, Jesse and the other survivors begin to develop similar abilities and devise a plan to fight back. This is a fast-paced book with strong, entertaining characters and engaging narration. The sequel, Homicidal Aliens and Other Disappointments, is to be published this month.
In the tradition of military science fiction, Black Hole Sun by David Gill is one of my favourites. Okay, so Earth no longer exists and there aren’t really any aliens but the man-eating, mutant Mars colonists come close. Set on Mars, Black Hole Sun features Durango and his crew, who are hired to steal a valuable resource and protect the miners from the deranged monsters that have invaded the planet. For older readers, the Western-style themes combined with advanced technology and space travel may remind you of Joss Whedon’s Firefly. Humorous dialogue and fast-paced scenes make this a compelling read. This is the first of a series, so readers who enjoyed this book can expect even more action and peril from the sequels.
For something humourous and light-hearted, I suggest The True Meaning of Smekday by Adam Rex. With quirky characters and bizarre turn of events, this book is amusing the whole way through. When two alien races fight to take over planet Earth, it’s up to Gratuity and a rogue alien named J.Lo to save the day. If you like this book, you may also enjoy Terry Pratchett’s humour-ridden Johnny Maxwell series.
There are many new science fiction authors writing exciting stories for teens. To find a story that’s right for you, visit your local library.
A Good Read is a column by Tri-City librarians that is published every Wednesday. Afton Schindel works at Coquitlam Public Library.