I received a free copy of Eviction Notice (*****) through the Goodreads FirstReads program with the understanding that I would review it after reading. This affects my review only in that I probably never would have read this book otherwise–not for any lack of interest, but since I typically buy used books (budgetary considerations) and this was self-published, I probably never would have seen a copy otherwise. In fact, because it is self-published, I’m including the link to the Kindle version on Amazon, which is currently only about $3. You probably won’t find another way to get ahold of the book, and I highly recommend finding a copy.
Things are not going well for Alice Able. She’s recently divorced, she’s broke and unemployed, and emotionally a wreck. She’s planning to end it all, until she discovers that all life on Earth is about to be destroyed unless she can stop it…. We start out with high school seniors Sarah, Jenny, Gary and Barnaby as they set out to pull off an epic senior prank. They settle for a crop circle, setting off the series of events chronicled here. Their crop circle coincidentally mirrors the one being used a couple thousand miles away as a landing beacon, causing a fateful delivery to go awry. As a result, intergalactic trader Aloon and his misfit crew, Scrap and Carl, are alarmed to discover that not only has their delivery failed to arrive but the resulting breach of their contract is punishable by death. In order to buy a grace period in which to attempt to locate their cargo, Aloon quickly claims Earth as his property and then uses it as his collateral. If his claim is found to be valid, all life on Earth will be evicted. Investigating this claim are Clayton and Tyler, two bureaucrats from the council. Seeing that the USA is the dominant power on the planet, that it is a democracy, and that Iowa is the first state to vote in an election, they decided that whoever is first on their voting registry must be the person in charge. (Makes sense, right?) Thus, they show up at Alice Able’s door to inform her of the situation and ask if she has any comment?
Across the board, I absolutely loved this book. It was incredibly funny, and Wyrick shows a definite flair for taking the stereotypical scenes from films in this vein and turning them on their head to make you laugh. That said, the beginning was a little flat for me. Wyrick takes a moment from the climax and just drops you in, then goes back to the beginning. Sometimes this would work, but in this case you don’t know any of the characters yet and it is just confusing. Add that to the lack of comedy in these opening bits, and you think you’re in for a mediocre Independence Day knock-off. Then the first couple chapters are a bit slow. After that it really picks up though, so much so that I ended up giving it five stars. The voice of the book is excellent, if initially a bit confusing. One of the characters, Sarah, acts as the narrator for the story. All well and good, but she isn’t directly involved in most of it–and would have no way of knowing some of the included details, such as characters’ inner thoughts–and so the format becomes third-person-omniscient with scattered episodes of first-person narration. I was initially confused, but I got over it. I certainly wouldn’t change anything, as the resulting voice is incredibly fun. You just have to purposefully not think about how the narrator knows certain things. Like I said, well worth the read!
Content: Pretty PG. Mild language, a little violence (sometimes comedic), little to no sexual content.