Well, after a few days of wild, wet and windy weather, what better way to dry out and unwind than to recommend a worthy book to the ravenous blog-reading hoardes? Today’s offering is a truly charming and quirky little story that I stumbled across by accident in one of my frequent random word searches at the Book Depository. I had never heard of it before and have only come across two mentions of it since I discovered it a while back…this is a travesty in my opinion, because it’s certainly deserving of a wide readership. Although it may just be me living under a rock, (living as a rock?) because apparently it is to be made into a film to be released next year.
The True Meaning of Smekday by Adam Rex is funny and fast-moving tale for middle readers (aged around 8 to 14), with great appeal for adult readers also. It centres around Tip, a 12-year-old girl who is writing an essay titled “The True Meaning of Smekday” in the aftermath of the invasion of Earth by an alien race called the Boov. In case you’re wondering, the Boov renamed Christmas day – the day of the invasion – Smekday, after their leader Captain Smek.
Read it if:
* you have a natural urge to rebel against authority
* you have ever wanted a sidekick or mode of transport with a memorable yet silly name
* you are a fan of cats and believe they will play some role in either the causation or defence of the invasion of Earth by an alien species
* you’re looking for a really un-usual story that stands out from its genre-mates through its incessant humour, thoughtful application of characterisation, setting and plot twists, and engaging format and illustrations
I would definitely recommend this one as a read-aloud to a class or a read-with for a reluctant reader. If you haven’t come across it before, seek it out – it is certainly a standout for content and readability for books in this age-range. Also, if the news is right, and it is to be made into a film, it always pays to read the book first, so you can smugly comment on all the differences betwixt book and film to your less-well-read friends.
Until next time,