Can the truth about the Martian invasion of Roswell heal Mylo’s broken heart?
One year, one month, and three days ago, 11-year-old Mylo’s brave older brother, Obie, died. Mylo still feels his loss and his absence keenly, to the point where he won’t let his best friend, Dibs, use Obie’s bed when he sleeps over, insisting that they share his twin. One hot July night in 1947, something lights up the sky. Dibs is certain it’s Martians come to suck out their brains. Mylo’s not convinced until a voice whispers “Help” inside his head. The two friends venture into the desert and find wreckage…but it’s not until they return with friends that they find a saucer and someone who needs help. Mylo vows to help even if the government gets in the way. Following her debut, Lemons (2017), Savage again explores loss and its effect on individuals and families. This mostly realistic tale teeters on the precipice of maudlin and drags a bit—and no military base was ever so easy to break into (nor any American military so deferential to its former members and their children)—but patient readers, especially those who have experienced loss themselves, will identify with strong, good, self-doubting Mylo, who narrates his sometimes-funny story and often addresses his departed brother. The story takes place in Corona, New Mexico, where people of Latinx heritage, including biracial Mylo (his mother is Latinx and his father is white), predominate.
Sci-fi seekers lured by the title might be bored, but lovers of historical fiction will be at home. (Historical science fiction. 9-12)