Book Review: Daniel X: Watch the Skies by James Patterson & Ned Rust

danielx2Title: Daniel X: Watch the Skies
Author: James Patterson and Ned Rust
Genre: Middle grade science fiction
Publisher: Little, Brown, and Company
Rating: 3 out of 5 stars
Source: Review copy from Mother-Talk
First line: It was a pretty regular early-summer night at 72 Little Lane.

Daniel X: Watch the Skies by James Patterson and Ned Rust is the sequel to The Dangerous Days of Daniel X, which introduces the character of Daniel X, Alien Hunter. Daniel is an alien himself, brought to earth by his parents, who were charged with hunting down the most dangerous aliens on planet Earth. When he was orphaned, he took over the raising of himself – and the hunting down of the aliens on The List, a super-computer with details of the known whereabouts and activities of the most villainous E.T.s on our planet.

The sequel opens with Daniel looking for Number 5, a gruesome fish-like alien who has decided that the mass extermination of humans would make great footage for his new reality show, beamed to the outer reaches of the galaxy. Daniel is helped in his mission by his four friends, creations of his imagination, and his new girlfriend, Judy Blue-Eyes.

The sequel provided a similar reading experience to the first book in the series. It was a fast, enjoyable read, but I’m not exactly the authors’ target demographic. This series is directly aimed at the tween-aged boy, with gross alien slime, cool weapons, and make-out sessions with gorgeous girls. (Nothing explicit – I let my 11-year-old read these.) And the fact that this series doesn’t try to pretend it’s something it’s not is what makes it perfect for boys like my Noah, who has barely touched a book all summer vacation. (The one major exception being a Ripley’s Believe It or Not annual.) When Daniel X: Watch the Skies arrived in the mail, he took off the dust jacket (he hates those), handed it to me, and immediately sat down to start reading it. Any book that will make my son that excited to read is a precious thing.

Yes, I only gave it three stars (which means I liked it, but didn’t love it). However, I am a 36-year-old mother of four – not a tween or teen-aged boy. My son Noah rates these books both five stars, and considers them among his favorites. If you know any boys at that age, this is the perfect book to hand them to get them excited about reading – or, if they are already an avid reader, to give them a few hours of great entertainment.

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20 Responses to Book Review: Daniel X: Watch the Skies by James Patterson & Ned Rust

  1. Kim
    Twitter: BookstoreK

    My teenage son has done some heavy reading all summer, this sounds like a fun read for the last week of summer, thanks for the review.
    .-= Kim´s last blog ..The Indiebound App led me to Coalesce Books =-.

  2. Sandy
    Twitter: youvegottaread

    I know exactly what you mean. Many of our YA books thrill the kids, but I am only moderately entertained. That is the big difference between a run-of-the-mill YA book and an excellent YA book.
    .-= Sandy´s last blog ..An Offer from CSN Office Furniture! =-.

  3. Sounds fabulous for a tweenage boy! Thanks for the review and recommendation!
    .-= rhapsodyinbooks´s last blog ..Review of “The Brutal Telling” by Louise Penny =-.

  4. Kathy says:

    It’s nice to see some books geared to boys that age! I’m glad Noah loves them.
    .-= Kathy´s last blog ..(500) Days of Summer =-.

  5. Margot says:

    Telling me your son’s rating was important to me, too.
    .-= Margot´s last blog ..Friday Finds: The Farm Edition =-.

  6. Yep–that was my impression of the first one. I would have given it 3 stars. BUT I’m not the target audience either.
    .-= Jennifer, Snapshot´s last blog ..I’m Reading the Time Traveler’s Wife =-.

  7. Andreea says:

    I’ve never heard of this book before! Thanks for you review!
    .-= Andreea´s last blog ..Mr. Darcy, Vampyre =-.

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  9. Kristen Howe says:

    Hey Kari. Good review on that James Patterson series. I haven’t read that one before. Maybe somewhere down the line. I lost the copy of the group’s blog list. Can you send me another copy? I’ll print it this time. I believe I deleted it last week.
    .-= Kristen Howe´s last blog ..Whack a Mole =-.

  10. Pingback: The Sunday Salon – August 30, 2009 (The “August-reading-wrap-up” and “reading challenge update” edition | BOOKS AND MOVIES

  11. carneil says:

    this book was really boring!!

  12. Zharia Presberry says:

    i Really loved it