Be Home for Armageddon, by Luke Edwards

‘What the hell is that?’
‘Just a sec,’ said Anna, turning now.
A plummeting orb was upon them, filling the sky, while clouds, as if magnetised, swirled and joined the growing mass.
The orb crashed mid-street, engulfing the entire region in vapour, which instantly began to implode, drawing back into the impact site with a cyclonic roar as all surrounding matter was now enveloped by the force.

Be Home for Armageddon

When he witnesses a seemingly inexplicable explosion in his street, Victor is only scared for a little while – because he loves science, and he and his friend Soo are soon busy investigating just what is going on. Whilst the rest of the street is willing to accept the explanation of a gas explosion, Victor knows that whatever it was came from the sky. But even he isn’t prepared for what he finds when he explores the craters. The beings setting up home there might be aliens, but they’re not like any other alien ever imagined. They are black holes. And it doesn’t matter how friendly a black hole might be, their destructive habits can be a bit disturbing.

Be Home for Armageddon is a funny science fiction offering for teens and pre teens, with humour, science and action well blended, although some of the science may go over the heads of some readers.

The main characters are ostensibly 17, though seem younger, and the book is more likely to appeal to readers in upper primary.

Be Home for Armageddon, by Luke Edwards
Omnibus, 2012
ISBN 9781862919419

Avaialable from good bookstores or online.

The Staring Owl, by Luke Edwards

Owl took up staring at an early age.
While most parents discourage staring, Owl was raised to stare at everyone and everything.

Owl is fabulous at staring. His parents are proud but not everyone else is. He finds it tough to find a job, only partly because he has feathers. It’s his stare. It’s unsettling. Poor Owl despairs of finding a job. But when he has all but resigned himself to unemployment, he finds the perfect job. Illustrations are black and white and yellow, using graphite and Photoshop. The Staring Owl is a mid-sized hardback picture book, with a matt finish to the cover…except for those eyes. They shine.

Owl tries very hard to find a job. Although he has very well-developed staring skills, none of the jobs he considers are quite right. All use staring but not his unrelenting staring. And he feels a little victimised because he’s not human. But he finally finds his place. And having done so, he remembers what it felt like to be an outsider and he sets up a support group for those like him. This gently humourous story suggests that there is a place for everyone in the world, even if that place is not easy to find. It’s a lovely fable. Recommended for all staring owls.

The Staring Owl

The Staring Owl, Luke Edwards
Omnibus Books 2010
ISBN: 9781862919112

review by Claire Saxby, Children’s Author

This book can be purchased in good bookstores or online from Fishpond. Buying through this link supports Aussiereviews.