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Earth to Charlie

3.67  ·  Rating details ·  369 ratings  ·  114 reviews
A high school outcast spends his life hoping to be abducted by aliens in this funny, quirky novel about finding your footing in a world that sometimes feels like Mars.

Convinced his mother has been abducted by aliens, Charlie Dickens spends his nights with an eye out for UFOs, hoping to join her. After all, she said the aliens would come back for him. Charlie will admit th
Kindle Edition, 288 pages
Published April 16th 2019 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
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Average rating 3.67  · 
Rating details
 ·  369 ratings  ·  114 reviews

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Justin Olson
Jan 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition
I'm going to go ahead and rate my book. I just kept thinking about it, wondering, "Should I really rate my own novel? Is that corny? Silly? Will people laugh at me? Hate me?"

Then I thought, "Well, didn't I spend years thinking about, and then writing, Charlie's story? And didn't I spend even more time working on getting it to the point where it's mere months from its publication? And isn't the nearly half-decade of time worthy of five stars?"

Well, to be honest, who knows. People rate books 5 s
Katie Gallagher
Check out my blog for more reviews and fun bookish stuff!

This was one of those books that I picked up in a random buy-a-thon in Barnes and Noble. The blurb called to me: aliens in Montana? I’m writing a book about aliens in Montana, so this was basically required reading!

Slight spoiler, but I think you really ought to know this heading into the book: in the end, Earth to Charlie turned out to be much more of a contemporary book than anything approaching sci-fi. That was a bit of a disappoint
I received this via Goodreads Giveaways in exchange for an honest review. All my opinions are my own.

This was one of the ones that was high up on my wishlist.. the cover was the first to intrigue, not gonna lie :) The summary caught my eye and I could't click on the giveaway fast enough when it came up.

When I finished the book...

It took awhile for me to get invested in it, this book is a steady/slow pace and isn't in a hurry to get there.

That came out wrong but what I mean is, the book gets
(You can also find this review on my blog!)

I had high hopes for this book, and I am telling you now—it did not disappoint. From UFO's, to friendship, to family, to awkward teens, to a cute dog, and to some self-realizations, I adored everything about this book.

This is a DRC I received from Edelweiss.

The writing
The writing style is wonderful! It's light and easy, but it was also beautiful and melancholic, and at times, even poetic. For me, it has the same style as Aristotle and Dante Discover the
Naomi Milliner
Jan 11, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What a terrific read! I felt profound sympathy for the highly likable MC, Charlie. He's so unhappy with his life that he longs to be abducted by aliens, and reunited with his mother. His sadness and loneliness are beautifully depicted, and the supporting cast of characters is strong and interesting. I had no idea where the story was headed, but I was completely satisfied with the ending. Sweet and powerful, this book is well worth reading, and I feel that anyone can relate to Charlie. Fantastic ...more
Apr 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
As a diverse reader of color and a member of the LGBTQIA+ community, this book had me misty eyed and emotional. I was able to relate in a universal way and I’m sure everyone of ALL walks of life will be able to take a lot from it. We need more books like this. The kind that reminds us that we’re all human. I literally hugged the book after reading it. There’s not enough YA books for young boys growing up that are thoughtful, emotional, and sensitive in a way that lets you know it’s okay... and i ...more
Karol Silverstein
The word that kept coming to me over and over as I read this engaging story was "tender." Charlie interacts with the people in his life - his grandma who he visits regularly though she rarely recognizes him, his very overweight neighbor Geoffrey and Geoffrey's three-legged dog Tinkles, his new friend from school, Seth - with such an open heart and with such kindness, that it makes the reader feel tremendously connected to him. His emotions are deeply felt and we feel them all along with him. The ...more
I was sadly underwhelmed by Earth to Charlie. While the titular character was sweet and interesting, the writing was juvenile and the story felt cut-off and unresolved. Also, the slight fatphobia in Geoffrey's character was uncomfortable and unneeded. Overall, I expected a lot more from this book and felt like I didn't get back what I put into it. ...more
J.H. Trumble
Dec 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
So excited to see this book making it's way into the world. I suck at writing reviews, so let me just say read it! CHARLIE is original, quirky, tender. I could def see this one coming to the big screen one day. ...more
Mar 15, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for sending a review copy in exchange for an honest review.

Whew. This book was an emotional ride. I really enjoyed the writing choices and how the narration was so natural and conversational. It really made me feel connected to Charlie from the start. He is such an earnest and pure character that you can’t really help but feel for him and his plight.

I think there was a great deal of excellent work done on the supporting characters and I really enjoyed ge
Brenna Clark
Feb 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Thank you to NetGalley for the ARC of this sweet and impactful book. All my life, I grew up believing in the impossible. My mom raised me on The X-Files, Harry Potter, and so many other fantastical worlds that were too far away to touch but incredibly near and dear to her heart. I felt a huge connection to Charlie in that way, who thinks he is looking for his mom in the stars but is really finding his way with the sky as his map. The way he wakes up every day and names the sky he’s greeting with ...more
Bridget Tyler
Nov 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I was having a conversation with my husband a few weeks ago about how hard it was to think of really great role model characters for boys who aren't based on comic books from the early 20th century or sci fi and fantasy movies of the 80's. Then I read Earth to Charlie. It's so rare to find a story about young men struggling with their emotions, learning to deal with friendship, and ultimately learning to be kind to themselves and each other. This one is pitch perfect. Funny and sweet and sad and ...more
I was ready to give this four stars because I enjoyed the relationship between Charlie and Seth, but there was very little happening in this book?
Jan 18, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This truly is one of the best books that I have ever read! It is so phenomenally beautiful and to anyone who is thinking of reading it do it! And to those that aren't thinking of reading it, you should really reconsider. 1000% worth it. ...more
Jessica (The Psychotic Nerd)
This and other reviews can be found on The Psychotic Nerd

Short and Simple Review
I picked up this book mainly because it looked like a mix of aliens (one of my older obsessions) and contemporary (one of my newer obsessions). To be honest, with that combination I wasn't sure what to expect from this book. This book is high on contemporary, less on the aliens, but Charlie (our MC) firmly believes that his mother was taken by aliens and that the aliens are coming for him as well. This idea is
Oct 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Earth to Charlie has a cover that makes it look like sci-fi but it's a YA about an outcast who has been waiting for aliens to take him away since the night his mother said she was about to be picked up by aliens and they'd come back for him later . . . and then she disappeared.

Charlie's been mercilessly bullied at school but then a new guy arrives and he wants to be friends. Charlie is hesitant. He's a pariah. Why would anyone actually want to be his friend? There are a lot of other things goin
This hit really close to home and for all the right reasons.
Tiffany Neal
Thank you, NetGalley for providing me with a digital ARC of this title.

While I wasn’t fully swept away by his debut YA novel, there’s a certain contentment that I felt as I read it.

Firstly, Justin Olson is a great writer, and I imagine he will have a fruitful career with many more novels to come. His writing is simple, easy to read, yet poetic and completely engaging. So many YA novelists tend to over-write and ruin the story with such tactics, but not Justin. He’s a damn good writer.

While there
Feb 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: book-club-2019
Earth to Charlie is unique, clever, humorous, and full of heart. Charlie is such a lovable main character and I spent the whole book wanting to hug him and cheer him on. Earth to Charlie is a highly relatable story told through a very innovative lens. I truly loved this book and look forward to reading it again! 👽💜💙💫
Chelsea Bashore
Feb 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ya
So, I was lucky enough to win this book in a Twitter giveaway.

I loved this book so much. For myself I have a solid connection to the character dealing with his mom's mental health concerns. That feeling of always wanting to fix things or still have faith in the one you love is so pure. I appreciated that.

The friendship that this book shows and tell is beautiful. I think there needs to be more books that enable boys/teen boys the chance to read about friendship and relationships with LGBTQ+ char
Stephanie Braswell
⁣Earth to Charlie by Justin Olsen is a YA novel that covered SO MANY themes, even some I wasn’t expecting, that children struggle with in their everyday lives. Friendship, bullying, abandonment, mental health, sexuality, loss, forgiveness, alcohol abuse, unhealthy body images, AND ALIENS.
⁣I was engrossed in this story all day long, it was an easy read with a message most kids can connect with at least one facet of a Charlie’s journey. ⁣
⁣My rating is four stars instead of five ONLY b
Oct 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What a great read. I loved Charlie so much. I felt so much for the character. I was so invested in the book. I cried in some parts and that’s very hard for me to do in a book. That ending though???? I need more information!!
Leah Nardo
Aug 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Loved it. Unresolved and all. Feels like life in that way. <3
Mar 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I absolutely loved this book!

Anyone who's ever been a teenager, felt out of place, wished to be some place different, struggled to find themselves, or has had trouble focusing on the present should check this book out.

I think I felt the entire range of emotions a human can feel while reading this and a lot of the situations Charlie experienced I found very relatable. I became lost in the story, with no sense of time or the fact that I was even reading anymore. It just flowed. I was in Charlie's
Interesting, witty and thoughtful
May 20, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
this book would be a great indie film. someone should make this
Mar 28, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
My favorite part of this book was Charlie's excellent relationship with his grandmother, that made me so happy to see in YA. This to me read as a cross between The Sun is Also a Star (not quite as good as) and We are the Ants (much better than), it was quirky and delightful. ...more
Jan 09, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I loved this. Charlie will stay with me forever. Finding meaning in a world that seems to have left you behind is a daily task for me. And this gives hope. Charlie’s story is pure hope. May we all find our Seth’s. Our anchors on this rock we call earth.
Aj Sterkel
Apr 23, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: young-adult
A quiet story with a unique premise. I love Charlie and Seth's friendship and would have liked more resolution. To me, it feels like the book has a long, slow buildup to a rushed ending.

Better review to come . . .
Trudi Olson
Mar 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Such a spooky fun read!! A great story that keeps you turning the pages!!!!
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Justin Olson has never been abducted by aliens (that he knows of). He taught high school English and theater in Montana before moving to Los Angeles. He continues to write novels and is an independent film and TV producer. He has a masters degree from the University of Montana and one from UCLA. Earth to Charlie is his debut novel.

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