Victoria Wilkinson's Reviews > The Dark Side of Nowhere

The Dark Side of Nowhere by Neal Shusterman
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Mar 10, 2012

I am not really into alien books, so I was a little apprehensive for this one. The start of the book seemed to be a bit un-intriguing: a normal kid who is bored with his everyday life. It takes a turn as Jason is given a strange glove and learns more than any kid could ever expect at his age. Younger kids will appreciate the mystery and find commonality in how he wants something interesting to happen in regular day-to-day life.

As a reader, I enjoyed the novel. It picked up quickly after the big occurrence in the first few chapters. I found it odd that the main characters did not have very much resistance to the idea that they were aliens. They had lived on earth as humans for their entire lives yet in a couple days, they accepted that it was all a lie. Then again, they are young and I am sure it would be cool to a teenage boy! I did like how Jason was able to see the good in humanity even when everyone was trying to pollute his mind. He was a very trustworthy character and I felt a desire for things to end well for him.

As a teacher, I think the message of doing what is right instead of following peer pressure would be a good reason to teach this book. Jason gives up his powers to do what is right rather than follow the status quo. There are so many issues with cliques and bullying in middle school, it is nice to see a novel that challenges this. I think Shusterman succeeded in creating a strong young adult protagonist, students could easily write about whether they feel Jason makes the right decision.

By Vicki Wilkinson and Natalie Spindle

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