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Alienated: Grounded at Groom Lake by Jeff Norton [BOOK REVIEW]

Alienated: Grounded at Groom Lake by Jeff Norton book review books blog blogger blogging diary of difference diaryofdifference

Alienated: Grounded at Groom Lake by Jeff Norton was the perfect middle grade quarantine book I was waiting for! Also – during the quarantine, Jeff is reading a chapter a day on his YouTube Channel, so please do check it out. His reading is wonderful!

From the first moment I read the synopsis, I knew I was going to like this book. 

Fourteen-year-old Sherman is used to moving schools. But he’s never been to a school like Groom Lake High, the high school for aliens. 

It’s a very alien environment for him, and he has to fit in. He quickly makes friends with a gang of galactic misfits. When the school bully NED endangers planet Earth, Sherman and his friends have to do anything they can to stop him!

My Thoughts: 

The thing I loved most about Alienated: Grounded at Groom Lake was the amazing word play and inside jokes. It is very well thought and written and I really enjoyed it! There were so many puns and witty jokes that a children might initially miss, but will definitely make an adult chuckle. 

“It suddenly struck me that Facebook might be one of the alien inventions we were all using. I had seen its inventor on TV once and he definitely looked more alien than human.”

We read the book from Sherman’s point of view.

And through him, we find out everything. His thoughts, his choices, his fears and his dreams. Not only do we get to know him, but we also get to watch his character grow as we move throughout the book. 

“Sherman, when you get older, you’ll come to appreciate that life is basically a series of disappointments.”

Even though alien, this high school puts Sherman through all the troubles a normal school does: making friends, being bullied and having a crush. But Sherman also gets to fly rockets and has a chance to save the world!

Sherman’s sister and his group of friends are awesome! They are funny and smart. I loved Octo, especially for his bravery and selflessness. I also loved the fact that the female characters were presented as strong and powerful individuals. It was a tiny touch, but quite meaningful, and it shouldn’t go unnoticed. 

“Now don’t be fooled. Jess might look like a malnourished goth queen, but she punches like a heavyweight.”

I also liked NED as a character. 

“I’d call him a bully, but that’s giving bullies a bad name.”

He was quite a big bully – that is true. However, being evil is the only think he learned from his parents while growing up. The lesson we can learn is that sometimes we do bad things because we don’t know any different. But what we do once we are given a second chance is what really matters! 

I absolutely loved this book and I recommend it not only to middle-graders, but to people of all ages. It’s a gem and it deserves to be n every child’s library. 

I received a copy of this book through a giveaway on Toppsta. All opinions are my own and completely unbiased. 

Purchase Links:
| Amazon UK |Amazon US |

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