Science Fiction

Review: Zack and Zoey’s Alien Apocalypse by MJ Ware

Zack and Zoey's Alien Apocalypse book cover
Image from MJ Ware

Title: Zack and Zoey’s Alien Apocalypse

Author: MJ Ware

Genre: Science Fiction

Looking for yummy human tenders, Admiral Nact-bauk invades the local school. Zack and Zoey lead the counterattack armed with rulers, protractors, and dodge balls. They might have a chance, if Nact-bauk didn’t gulp down the only teacher brave enough to stand up to him. Even worse, he forces Zoey onboard the alien vessel for dinner — along with a bucket of honey-mustard sauce. Zack will do just about anything to save her. If Principal Blathers won’t help, Zack sees no choice but to ‘borrow’ the principal’s car. Chasing the alien saucers, he meets up with a wrinkly WWII hero who thinks he knows the alien’s weakness: electric toothbrushes. Wielding only umbrellas and battery-powered dental weapons, things look grim. Even if the pair manage to rescue Zoey, there’s the small matter of escaping.

So, what possessed me to pick this up? Still not quite sure about that. Maybe because it was free. Maybe an alien invasion story sounded good at the time. Maybe I wanted a light, fun read. But whatever the reason, I decided to read this.

Zack and Zoey’s Alien Apocalypse is one of those difficult books to review. It’s a middle grade book – the younger side of middle grade. There was some juvenile humor that I’m sure my 12-year-old brother would have loved, but just made me roll my eyes.

And there was absolutely nothing for character development. Don’t get me wrong, it fit with the story, but I knew nothing about Zack (who narrated). He was an upper-elementary-aged boy. Zoey I knew even less about, besides the fact that she and Zack were friends. I can’t even pretend to discuss them, because there was nothing to discuss.

The plot was very interesting – and a little too quick, I think. Aliens show up and eat people (somehow, MJ Ware managed to keep the tone light, even when people were dying). Evil teachers and principals try to feed the kids to the aliens so they don’t get eaten. The kids have to discover how to keep the aliens from eating them all. Which turns out kinda weird and kinda logical at the same time.

Let me get this straight: I enjoyed the read. It was a light, quick, simple diversion. Would I read it again? No. Would an upper-elementary kid like this more than I did? Almost certainly.

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