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The Alien in the Backseat


Loved it! 😍

A delightfully fun and light read full of humor. A space romp...on earth.

The Alien in the Backseat is a delightful space comedy/road trip that takes place almost entirely between North Carolina and Florida. The writing is concise and the plot is straightforward and fun. This story is told from several characters, but the main character is Jake Whitman. He continuously tells the reader that he likes his routine and isn't one to take chances or put himself out there, yet his actions speak differently. Jake wants to break out of his routine life. He wants to have an adventure, but he's never really pushed himself before. The alien that randomly chooses his car to take a nap in is just the push Jake needs to let go of his daily habits. He already lost his girlfriend, so what else does he have to lose? Jake keeps telling us that he's uncomfortable in the situations this road trip keeps thrusting him into, but he does seem to handle disaster and aliens quite well. I enjoyed the contrast between how Jake viewed himself and how he acted. Some chapters featured other characters' point of views, like the reporter who is also stuck in a dead-end job, a federal agent, and an alien. These chapters helped to create more tension and elevated the humor present in the back and forth between characters.


The writing style immediately caught my attention. From the first page, I was hooked by the witty use of words and phrases. The prose was delightfully entertaining. The first chapter was the perfect starting point to the narrative. The narrative style and the presence of aliens reminded me of Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams. Science is not at the forefront of this science fiction novel, but instead the novel focusses on a fun story and the humor in the situations and between the characters. Sometimes the deadpan delivery was so surprising that I had to laugh. If you enjoyed the humor and the outrageous aliens in the Men in Black series, you will surely appreciate this book's humor.


Jake (and by extension the author) express themselves in a blend of sarcasm and wit that comes across naturally and not at all in a pretentious manner. When we meet the alien and he does come across as pretentious, it is all the more hilarious. The alien is so aggressively outgoing and is written perfectly. The author is able to write the perfect blend of detailed descriptions with dialogue and action. The subtle continuity between chapters was simple yet ingenious. The ending was well set up, made sense to include Jake and his friends, and was wholly satisfying to read.

Reviewed by

Hello! I'm an author and a book reviewer. I've reviewed ~400 Indie books since 2013 and just reached over 1000 blog posts since 2013! I love lists and challenges. I especially enjoy contemporary young adult books. I'm a fast reader and love spotting typos when reading ARCs.

That time Jake drank almost three beers

About the author

Phillip Knight Scott is a native of Durham, North Carolina, where he lives, writes, and watches classic episodes of Doctor Who. A husband and father, he's only recently published his first collection of poems: Paint the Living, Plant the Dead. view profile

Published on October 30, 2020

60000 words

Genre: Science Fiction

Reviewed by