Alicia's Reviews > A Brief Stay at Earth Human Camp

A Brief Stay at Earth Human Camp by Marie C. Collins
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's review
Sep 03, 2015

it was ok
bookshelves: aliens

I was given a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

This story was basically about trying to make friends when you’re different.

It reads as middle grade fiction that went for WAY too long. Don’t get me wrong; it was a good book, just for someone aged from 8-13 who can sit still for 383 pages. No fifteen-year-old wants to read about a ten-year-old boy who categorizes animal scat as a hobby; or a twelve-year-old girl trying to make friends and figure out what an iPod is. It fells like the age bracket was pushed out to fit the word length, instead of cutting it to fit the actual audience.

The cutesy referrals to ‘Earth humans’ also fit well in a middle grade fiction, not so much in young adult. The characters themselves had no idea they were anything other than human (they’re half alien, half human) until two days prior. That’s it. Two whole days, and they start referring to them as ‘Earth human children.’

The writing style starts out like a traditional children’s book; formal, if a little conservative, though highly amusing, with second person questioning thrown in as if their lives were being narrated. I liked that it grew with the characters as they expanded their worldview, shaping alongside them into a more contemporary style and slipping entirely into third person. It changed the tone entirely from the outset, however it was a little odd with the transition in POV from second to third person. Given the plot I think this worked, though it did at times feel as if a separate book had been jammed in the middle on the initial one. Again, as the characters’ entire perspectives were changing, this fit with the overall story, if somewhat unconventional.

The setting itself was fantastic. Reading this, I felt like I was back at camp myself, only the food in this version was better. The characters were great, a nice blend of ages and personalities to represent the usual mish-mash of social gatherings.
The clues leading up to the big reveal were sufficient for a younger audience; I think they’d get a kick from finally realising what all those little pieces meant with a big ‘ohhh’ exclaimed out loud.

Overall, this was enjoyable, but a little too padded out for the intended audience.
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Reading Progress

Started Reading
September 3, 2015 – Shelved
September 3, 2015 – Finished Reading
May 18, 2017 – Shelved as: aliens

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