The Alex Crow by Andrew Smith

The Alex Crow

Written by Andrew Smith

YA readers   Books of the Month   UKLA 2016   eBooks   
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The Lovereading4Kids comment

March 2015 Book of the Month Andrew Smith’s novel Grasshopper Jungle, a wild and totally original adventure about giant killer bugs terrorizing a small US town, is on the longlist for the Carnegie Medal. Here again he puts adolescent boys at the heart of a sophisticated and skilfully structured sci-fi story.

Fifteen-year-old Ariel first escapes death in his country’s civil war by hiding in a refrigerator, later to be saved from the hell of a refugee camp and offered a new life with a family in the US. There he spends a summer with his adopted brother Max at the strangely sinister Camp Merrie-Seymour for boys. A separate strand of the story involves the survivors of an expedition to the Arctic in the 1800s, another describes the nightmare road trip of ‘the melting man’ – a deranged individual who is quite literally falling to pieces. The three stories are linked, everything leads back to the bizarre activities of the research laboratories where Max’s dad works. Extinction, identity, freedom of choice, language, war and brotherhood, they’re all themes in this extraordinary novel. ~ Andrea Reece

Click here to read a blog written by Andrew Smith about the story behind The Alex Crow.

Reader Reviews

Some of our Lovereading4kids Reader Review Panel were lucky enough to read and review Grasshopper Jungle, Andrew Smith's break-out's a taster...

  • Izzy Read - 'It is either an unusual mix of genres or it was a completely new one. But strangely, it worked fantastically...This is a really unique book that I think a lot of teenagers will enjoy.' Read full review >
  • James Smith - 'Funny and me it was a good book, and it would make a very good film.' Read full review >
  • Sarah Murray - 'really original, I've never read anything like it...This has something for everyone; sci-fi, apocalyptic aspects, LGBT aspects, humour and so much more. I feel as though any fan of Michael Grant or David Levithan would love this book!' Read full review >

Read more reviews and download an extract of Grasshopper Jungle here.


The Alex Crow by Andrew Smith

Ariel, the sole survivor of an attack on his village in the Middle East is ‘rescued’ from the horrific madness of war in his homeland by an American soldier and sent to live with a family in suburban Virginia. And yet, to Ariel, this new life with a genetic scientist father and resentful brother, Max, is as confusing and bizarre as the life he just left.

Things get even weirder when Ariel and Max are sent to an all-boys summer camp in the forest for tech detox. Intense, funny and fierce friendships are formed. And all the time the scientific tinkerings of the boys’ father into genetics and our very existence are creeping up on them in their wooden cabin, second by painful second . . .


Praise for Grasshopper Jungle:

‘A masterpiece of a book’ Michael Grant

About the Author

Andrew Smith

Andrew Smith has always wanted to be a writer. After graduating college, he wrote for newspapers and radio stations, but found it wasn't the kind of writing he'd dreamed about doing. Born with an impulse to travel, Smith, the son of an immigrant, bounced around the world and from job to job, before settling down in Southern California. There, he got his first 'real job', as a teacher in an alternative educational program for at-risk teens, married, and moved to a rural mountain location. Smith has now written several award-winning YA novels; Grasshopper Jungle is his seventh and the first to be published in the UK. He lives with his wife, two children, two horses, three dogs, three cats and one irritable lizard named Leo.

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Book Info


288 pages
Interest Age: From 14


Andrew Smith
More books by Andrew Smith

Author's Website


Egmont Books Ltd an imprint of Egmont UK Ltd

Publication date

26th February 2015




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