Book Review

Spectacular Silver Earthling

By Mara Lynn Johnstone

The trouble with adorable aliens

Hello, welcome to my first book review! I’m delighted to start with Spectacular Silver Earthling by Mara Lynn Johnstone, a wonderful writer I met in fandom spaces. This book is a fun romp on a weird planet amid a pandemic that’s a cross between zombies (the fast kind) and panic attacks. The solution, according to the robot protagonist Hubcap, is to risk it all to save his human friends while constantly giving them crap about everything. 

They’re on the planet to film a show about strange jobs and end up recording a first contact with a new species. At first, it’s just about TV ratings, but when the creatures turn out to need careful handling, Hubcap finds himself the character most capable of treating them with— of all things— respect. Hubcap turns out to have a lot of emotional depth, and it’s fascinating to see him grapple with the same issues that plague (pun intended) his closest human friends. While saving the day, of course! Hubcap’s not a modest character, but neither does he need to be. 

Spectacular Silver Earthling is a sci-fi adventure in a vivid universe that stays with you after the book is done. If you’re looking for a story with action, emotional tension, humor, and some very bizarre plant life, I highly recommend it.

Find author Mara Lynn Johnstone at and on Twitter

Spectacular Sliver Earthling

Hubcap used to be a rescue bot, getting humans out of every boneheaded scrape imaginable. His new career as a TV star suits him much better: he can poke fun at the humans instead, while harvesting jetpods and tackling alien predators faster than any of them. It doesn’t hurt that he’s also immune to the mysterious “space frenzy” that keeps sending his coworkers into a froth. The robot worries for his human friends, though he would never admit it. Not when it’s much more fun to deploy weapons-grade sass.

Making sure the meatheads don’t kick the bucket while filming is hard enough, but when a rival show pops up aiming to steal their sponsor, the pressure is on. Hubcap has to film the most spectacular footage yet, while avoiding dangerous wildlife, plantlife, and emotions.

The frenzy is getting worse, and this planet might not be uninhabited after all. The entire galaxy is watching. Time is short. But if anyone is up to the task, it’s the robot with skills second to none, and an ego to match.