Gr 4-7--In a near future world, soccer is played at high speeds in giant mechanized suits and science projects involve robotic frog legs. Ethan Blackwood lives a nearly idyllic life in the suburbs. Although he's teased because his family has only four children when all the other kids have seven or more siblings, Ethan has won the respect of his classmates through his leadership abilities on the soccer field. But when Ethan meets two strange kids, his peaceful life is shattered in this riveting science fiction novel (Random, 2011) by Eric Nylund, Halo series author and game developer. The children tell him about alien invaders called the Ch'zar, who arrived on Earth 50 years ago and established mind control over every adult on the planet. The Ch'zar's major weakness is that they are unable to access the brains of individuals who haven't yet reached puberty. An army of preteens who fight from inside giant cyborg insects battle the Ch'zar in an attempt to win back Earth. When Ethan learns the truth, he becomes desperate to save his sister, who is on the verge of puberty. Narrator Peter Berkrot does a great job of effectively distinguishing between the voices of different characters, and his dramatic reading enhances the climactic sequences. This action-packed story for the pre-Halo crowd, replete with giant bugs and extra-terrestrial robots, is sure to be a winner with boys, especially reluctant readers.--Heather Campbell, formerly Philip S. Miller Library, Castle Rock, CO[Page 76]. (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.