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Mothership by Martin Leicht & Isla Neal

Things were going great for Elvie Nara. She got along with her dad, she had a fantastic best friend, and she had her future all planned out. She never expected to get involved with the gorgeous but totally dumb Cole Archer—and she most certainly never expected to get pregnant. But that’s what happened, and that’s why Elvie finds herself in outer space (okay, low Earth orbit) at the Hanover School for Expecting Teen Mothers. Dealing with her arch-nemesis and fellow baby mama Britta is bad enough, but things are about to go from bad to worse once the ship is invaded by a bunch of seriously hot commandos—including, to Elvie’s great surprise, her baby daddy Cole. Now, with a limited supply of oxygen due to a hull breach, a slow descent into Earth’s gravity, and some evil aliens on the way—because, oh yeah, all the teachers at Hanover were evil aliens and they’ve called for backup—things really aren’t looking so good. But Elvie’s got a ray gun and a plan, and she’s determined to kick some serious alien butt and make it back to Earth in one piece.

I’ve never been too big a fan of aliens when it comes to science fiction, but the hilarity and awesomeness of Mothership may have just changed my mind. Leicht and Neal have done a fantastic job of combining the more ordinary (though not by much) drama of Elvie’s pregnancy with the added excitement of futuristic technology and literally alien species, ensuring a thoroughly engaging plot. For me, though, what makes Mothership truly great is Elvie’s distinctive voice. She’s undeniably smart and applies sarcasm to any topic without discrimination, but underneath it all, she’s really just a teenage girl, and a pregnant one at that. Seeing this story through Elvie’s eyes makes it even more entertaining, and her running commentary is priceless. This is a story full of giggles, action, danger, and also a lot of depth, and its cliffhanger ending just makes me more impatient for the next installment in this out-of-this-world (sorry, I couldn’t help it!) trilogy.

Readers who liked Across the Universe by Beth Revis and Inside Out by Maria V. Snyder and really anyone in need of a good laugh will not want to miss Mothership.

Rating: 4.5

Review copy from personal collection

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