‘Aliens in Underpants Save the World’ is a fabulously funny book that is bound to appeal to most children’s sense of humours. Well any mention of underpants is usually enough to have my daughters in fits of giggles! It is written by Claire Freedman and illustrated by Ben Cort, and provides a sequel to their book ‘Aliens Love Underpants’.
In this book, the aliens spot a giant meteorite heading towards Earth that has all the scientists baffled. No one knows how to stop it but the aliens realise that if they don’t do something quickly, their source of underpants will not exist and then what will they do? They eventually come up with a cunning plan that involves finding lots of different pairs of underpants and stitching them together to form an enormous catapult. The plan is that when the meteorite hits it, it will bounce back into space and the world, along with all its underpants will be saved! But can such a cunning plan work? I suggest that you find a small child to read the book with in order to find out!
This is a great little story that is told with a great deal of humour. The alien’s fascination with underpants is very funny but it’s also quite clever that they use these in their saving the world attempt! There is also a certain amount of suspense as you are reading because you don’t know whether they are going to be successful!
The entire story is written in rhyme with one short verse telling a different part of the story on each page. The rhyme is quite clever and it is good for young children to attempt to predict the rhyming words. My five year old always loves having a go at this although she found some of the rhyming words quite tricky with this story. Also, although I liked the fact that it was written in rhyme, I did find some bits of the scanning a bit clumsy and therefore found it hard to sustain a rhythm when I was reading out loud. Having read it a few times now though, I have got used to the scanning and find it a little easier than I did at first.
Although there is not a huge amount of text there are some more difficult words such as ‘universe’, ‘mission’, ‘meteorite’, and ‘satellite’ to mention just a few. Not only are they quite tricky to read, some children might need some explanation of their meanings. For this reason, ‘Aliens in Underpants Save the World’ is probably best shared with an adult unless your child is pretty confident in his or her reading.
It is the illustrations that really make this book though. From the very first page they are funny and clever with lots going on. On the first page we meet the underpants loving aliens on their own planet all wearing underpants and what I was particularly drawn to was the alien balloon seller whose balloons were all made out of underpants. That really sets the tone for all of the other wonderful illustrations that follow.
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