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The Invasion

(Animorphs #1)

3.82  ·  Rating details ·  13,833 ratings  ·  941 reviews
Sometimes weird things happen to people. Ask Jake. He may tell you about the night he and his friends saw the strange light in the sky. He may even tell you about what happened when they realized the "light" was only a plane -- from another planet. Here's where Jake's story gets a little weird. It's where they're told that the human race is under attack -- and given the ch ...more
Paperback, 184 pages
Published June 1st 1996 by Scholastic
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Popular Answered Questions
Carl Jenkins She had a team that wrote a number of the books for her and then she would go and edit them.
Jakob I wasn't reading it when i was that young, but i think i would be able to handle it. so, i don't think it is too young, no.

Community Reviews

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Average rating 3.82  · 
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 ·  13,833 ratings  ·  941 reviews

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AJ Griffin
Jul 03, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: people who need to know about the Yeerks
Rather than go through the 23482398 of these that I read as a wee one, we'll commemorate the one that got it all started. If you're my age, a boy, and at least a little bit of a dork, you read these books. They had everything I wanted at that point: quick, dramatic chapters printed in this super-cool space age font, badass fucking aliens (you got your giant centipede things, your huge warriors with bodies made of blades, weird blue centaur-things with stalk eyes and scorpion tails, and nasty-ass ...more
Don't let the rating fool you; reading this book initiated the most significant literary experience of my life. It started in grade school and ended much too soon in high school. I read all of the books in the Animorphs universe, and after years of dragging my mom to the book store to buy me the latest Animorphs release, I finished the last book with a feeling of gratification, nostalgia, and love.

It seems silly and frankly impossible to describe to what extent this series has touched me. It's n
Wendy Darling
3.5 stars THIS BOOK IS SO EXCITING. Kids morphing into animals, flying saucers, and allllieeenns!

We're discussing the first 3 books on the blog 10/31. I can't believe I've never read these before.
5 years after my last full-series Animorphs reread, we're back again! This time, we're dragging a bunch of friends with us, including a few fresh readers, so I'm very excited. imo this series is still amazing and stands up for adult readers, because the content is so much darker than you perhaps expect or remember (or ever knew, if you hadn't given Animorphs a shot in the 90s/00s).

This time, with a better memory of where it all goes, I found myself paying closer attent
Apr 26, 2009 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Ashley by: the Scholastic Book Fair, 1996
So one of the things I did in middle school instead of being cool was read this series, over and over and over again. It's pretty much the reason I love reading science fiction; it was all up in my head and re-wiring my brain during my formative years. Over Christmas, my mom finally succeeded in getting me to brave her garage and pull out boxes of my old books that she's been storing for years, and what did I find in two of them but this series. They hadn't been touched for at least thirteen yea ...more
destiny ♡⚔♡ [howling libraries]
When I learned the first book in one of my favorite childhood series was being re-released as an audiobook, I had to have it, so I am super grateful to LibroFM for providing me with an ALC! This was honestly even better than I remembered it being and now I can't wait to reread the rest of the series, whether it's through the audiobooks or not. Full review coming soon!
Feb 07, 2020 rated it liked it
Story time:

When Animorphs was at its feverish height of popularity and what seemed like an entire Borders' kid's section was devoted to these weird mutating frog kids, I was a snobby eleven year old who was like, "These covers are so GAUCHE, truly not meant for a SOPHISTICATED reader of TASTE and CLASS, please point me to the DEAR AMERICA, which has classy features like ITALIC FONTS and a silk bookmarks. I pity the plebeian child who reads this dreck."

Twenty years later I am like, "Yum yum, dr
Cameron Chaney
Mar 07, 2015 rated it it was amazing

If you lived through the late 90s at all, odds are you remember Animorphs. It was a best-selling middle grade/young adult book series,

a Nickelodeon TV show,

a videogame,

and a Transformers toy line.

I was a big fan of the show as a kid, I played the games, and had a big collection of the toys. (Yes, I still have them. Don't judge me.) However, I only read a couple of the books. I never began reading the series from the start. So, here I am! I'm finally starting at the beginning and reading on throu
Ashley Marie
2020 reread: I can't get over how much is packed into this book. What a ride, as it ever was.
2016 reread: Reread this in an hour or so last night. God but I love these books. And we've only just cracked the world-building in this first book. It's very concise but still fantastic, the morph acquisition is plausible, and the characters are well-defined from the beginning. Still so good.
Jun 06, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favoritebooks
Started reading Animorphs 'cause I wanted to see if it was stupid. Boy was I ever wrong. Kids are fighting against mind-stealing aliens in this incredibly spooky and realistic-sounding character-oriented saga. In the first book they figure out what the circumstances of the invasion are and are given their morphing powers. I read the entire series. It is probably a lot different from what you think. I read these for the first time when I was in my mid-twenties, so that should tell you something. ...more
Sam Julian
Sep 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I re-read this the past weekend and now I can't stop thinking about it. I'm tearing through wikipedia remembering how awesome the whole thing was. I want to go back through the archives and read them all! There's only 64 books... this one only took me 90 minutes to read. I could burn through it in a few weekends...

< No Sam, no! That's the bookworm brain talking. You're an adult now, remember? >

Right, right. Sorry, lost myself there for a second. What was I doing? Right, working. It's just-- it w
Kara Babcock

That’s it. Review done. Go home.

What else do you want me to say? This was my series growing up. Sure, I read Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew—and someone was still writing new volumes in those series, too, updated for the modern 1990s. (I’m sure there is an entire PhD thesis devoted to tracing the ways those two series have been revised and rewritten and re-released throughout the twentieth century—and if there isn’t, there should be.) But it was probably an early indicator of my lifelong l
Nemo (The Moonlight Library)
Brought to you by The Moonlight Library!

I’ve been thinking about this review for a while. There’s two major difficulties: it’s often hard to write a great review of an amazing book, and how does one review a book one has read a billionty times since one was ten years old? (That was nearly twenty years ago. I SAY NEARLY I AM NOT THAT OLD.) This is an establishing review as well, so it will be longer than my other ones.

Let’s start from the beginning. I first saw this book when I was ten years old
Apr 01, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was my face the entire time I was reading this: :-D

Really, I couldn't stop grinning. Because Animorphs defined my adolescence. From my first book, received Easter Sunday 1997, through the bitter end (when I was finishing my sophomore year of high school), Animorphs was with me. I met my best friends through these books (and I met three of the women who stood for me on my wedding day through our shared love of Animorphs). So when I heard these were being re-released, it was fabulous. And whe
Apr 30, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Loved these books as a kid, of course. The regular visit to the bookstore for new each installment was a big highlight of each month.

What's really amazing is the power these books have when you go back to them. There was a time when I was depressed, and in my angsty boredom I looked at the full Animorphs collection sitting on my bookshelf and grabbed one of them to read. At first, the large font and simple syntax were a bit jarring, and I didn't know how well these books would hold up. But almos
Alan Woodall
Jul 10, 2008 rated it it was amazing
I have every single one of these books, from #1-54 of the regular series, the Ellimist/Andalite/Hork-Bajir Chronicles, Visser, all four Megamorphs, and the two Alternamorphs choose-your-own-adventure books. I have read most of these more than once.

While the books are very very formulaic and repetitive, particularly in action sequences and morphing descriptions ("He tucked back his wings and went into a dive..." "The feather pattern came up on my skin and burst into 3D..."), they have very lov
Dec 31, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This series is amazing. Katherine Applegate presents a phenomenal story with five diverse, fleshed-out characters, and doesn't sugar coat it. This first book is fantastic and grips you right from the start. I love each of the characters and everything they add. Reading this again as an adult, I really value how this series doesn't ever talk down to the reader. Also the nostalgia value is off the charts!
Dichotomy Girl
Feb 02, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: middle-grade, 2016, sci-fi
So glad I decided to read this series on a whim. It's actually really really good. (I'm about 2/3rds through the 2nd book as I'm writing this, and am really excited about the way that it's going.).

I guess I expected it to be, a bit cheezy, kinda immature, and a little dated, but still definitely fun. But it's really not, and it kind of makes me wonder why I'd never heard of this series before?
Jul 10, 2020 added it
My brain is a trainwreck and I couldn't read for months as a result, but I finally have just enough clarity and energy to put sentences simple sentences together, and all of the Animorphs are online now, sooo that's how we got here. Again. I refuse regrets.
Jun 24, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I've been writing about books that were formative for me in my childhood, but Animorphs was the first series that was integral to my childhood. This is the first series that I can remember waiting breathlessly for each and every book and being there the day they came out. My bookcase at some point was just a stack of Animorphs in numerical order. I was so into it that I could usually tell you what book it was by the animal/Animorph on the cover. I watched the television show, which to this day I ...more
Apr 12, 2020 rated it really liked it
For some reason I never read this series as a kid so I guess I'm doing it as an adult! Definitely a very interesting first book. I was worried it was going to be too ridiculous and childish but it actually reads pretty maturely and there is a lot of messed up body horror. I was expecting it to a degree but this is definitely more grown up than the majority of kids books I remember from the 90s. Also this first book was narrated by MacLeod Andrews who I love! Can't wait to read the next one.
Apr 19, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Best nostalgic kick ever.

I love this series. So. Much. I started reading it before I was teenager, and was practically a legal adult by the time it was finished. These are the books that made me want to read. For fun. It has been such a huge part of my life, and it's such a great treat to be able to go back and revisit these stories as they are reprinted again.

Some things to note about these reprints: The books originally came out in the 90's, so expect the pop-culture references in these new bo
Mar 31, 2016 rated it really liked it
Dude. This was more funny and heart breaking than I remember them to be in 4th grade.
Glad I looked back to my inner child.
Robyn Jefferson
Sep 11, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: kids
ignore that i am 23 years old and only just now reading animorphs, thanks
The Library Ladies
(Originally reviewed at

Narrator: Jake

Plot: This book has so much going on, guys! It’s like some strange feat of magic that Applegate somehow fits this all in one, tiny book. We have the introductions to the gang, the introductions to the intergalactic war, the Andalites, the Yeerks, the “discover your powers” moment, two wacky mini adventures, and then finally, the climatic final arc.

Basically, 5 teens meet and then decide (very poor decision #1) to wander through a desert
Jan 26, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Hello! I am a 40-year-old woman reading Animorphs for the first time. XD

Yeah, I kept seeing people on my feed doing the Great Animorphs reread and I know how much some of them love the series, so I thought, what the heck.

I can already see that these books are quite well-written for a 90s middle grade chapter book series. I mean, some things in this category are TERRIBLE (Jedi Prince series, I'm looking at you). The story is interesting and the writing and characters are not eyeroll-inducing. So,
This was one of my favorite series growing up so I re-read it because... nostalgia. Still enjoyable and has aged well. The writing isn't that different from current middle grade books. 3.5 stars.
Nov 12, 2008 rated it really liked it
The Animorphs was the defining series of my childhood. More than any other this book series shaped me into the person I would become, it ignited the interest in animals that is my driving force to this day, and instilled within me the moral groundwork that defined my values as an adult. Animorphs was everything to me - and now for the first time since the books were published I'm doing a full reread of the series.

Thank you, Clara.

The Invasion takes no time getting down to business. The book pr
Feb 09, 2013 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: piper
Recommended to smalls by: jasmine
Another book my 8 year old asked me to read. We origionally got this book so we could get the book of the girl morphing into a Dolphin. My girl loves Dolphins. So we decided we should at least know what happens at first before we just pick by animals. She is currently reading the dolphin one now. I just finished this tonight. I never thought I would be reading fantasy and sci fi, but that is what my daughter has picked up recently. It is an interesting idea, and parts of it for her, mostly the b ...more
Tanya (aka ListObsessedReader)
My first reaction was "Oh dear, the writing is a bit ordinary..." A few pages later I was fully swept up in the glorious nostalgia of it all!

Animorphs was a huge part of my childhood. I read and reread the earlier books (I have no real idea how many times I've read this first one... Suffice to say my copy looks well loved) but somehow never quite made it to the end of the series. Hoping this may be the first step to finally fixing that in adulthood!

This rating is definitely highly influenced by
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The Worst Bestsel...: Episode 52 - Animorphs #1 3 25 Jul 28, 2016 04:18PM  
Does anyone believe this is an adult book disguised as a kid's book? 19 110 Mar 31, 2016 08:41PM  
Animorphs Readalo...: The Invasion 2 17 Feb 02, 2015 01:03AM  
any animorph readers? 34 64 Jun 17, 2014 09:06AM  

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also published under the name Katherine Applegate ...more

Other books in the series

Animorphs (1 - 10 of 54 books)
  • The Visitor (Animorphs, #2)
  • The Encounter (Animorphs, #3)
  • The Message (Animorphs, #4)
  • The Predator (Animorphs, #5)
  • The Capture (Animorphs, #6)
  • The Stranger (Animorphs, #7)
  • The Alien (Animorphs, #8)
  • The Secret (Animorphs, #9)
  • The Android (Animorphs, #10)
  • The Forgotten (Animorphs, #11)

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“Oh, I'm sure we could talk them into letting us in for nothing," Marco said. "Just tell them
we're Animorphs."
"Tell them we're what?" Rachel asked.
"Idiot teenagers with a death wish," Marco said.
"Animorphs." I tried the word out. It sounded okay.”
“So, there we were. The five of us - Marco, Tobias, Rachel, Cassie, and me. Five normal mallrats heading home.
Sometimes I think about that one, last moment when we were still just normal kids. It's like it was a million years ago, like it was some totally different group of kids. You know what I was afraid of right then? I was afraid of admitting to Tom that I hadn't made the team. That was as scary as life got back then.
Five minutes later, life got a lot scarier.”
More quotes…