Review Blog

Dec 22 2010

Spike and Ali Enson by Malaika Rose Stanley

cover image

Tamarind, 2010.
(Ages 8-12) Recommended. This is a fun read, ideal for competent but reluctant readers. Spike's baby brother, Ali is a nightmare; he takes up all their parents' attention and produces a phenomenal quantity of vile smelling waste products - from both ends! Then there's the small matter of the suspicious glint in his eyes, the hint of scales and the greenish tinge to his skin. In fact, Spike is convinced that his baby brother is an alien.
Spike decides to take his fears to the UFO Notification Centre, where the wacky boss TJ Hoppermann takes Spike's concerns seriously and promises to investigate. Hopperman tests Ali's 'waste products' with shocking results.  Ali is indeed an alien and the story hits the press.  With the house surrounded by Paparazzi, Spikes's parents finally reveal the truth about his brother.
At first I thought this would be a run of the mill story about sibling rivalry, but it's far more imaginative than that. With a fast moving narrative and unexpected plot twists, this is an ideal story to tempt reluctant readers. The illustrations are lively and humorous, the chapters short, with plenty of dialogue and an abundance of cliff hangers, and the dramatic conclusion leaves room for a sequel. Great fun.
Claire Larson

Archived Blog Entries
Latest News
Miles Franklin longlist 2017
Reading Children's Book Prize 2017
Klaus Flugge Prize shortlist 2017
Branford Boase Award shortlist 2017
Text Prize 2017
NSW Premier Literary Awards shortlist 2017
Aurealis Awards winners
YABBA Awards shortlist 2017
Stella Prize 2017
2017 YALSA Teens' Top Ten Nominees

ReadPlus Features
Print similar authors bookmark
Read similar authors
How to find lesson plans
Sample theme animation

Promote Reading
Staff holiday reading list 2016
South Australian Christian Schools Conference 2016 - Library Displays
Display calendars
Value of School Libraries
Library, Reading development and the Internet
Free Rights of the Reader Poster
Reviews: Author index
Bookmark and poster templates