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Publisher's Summary

The Blythes are a big, warm, rambunctious family who live on a small farm and sometimes foster children. Now Prez has come to live with them. But, though he seems cheerful and helpful, he never says a word.

Then one day Prez answers the door to someone claiming to be his relative. This small, loud stranger carries a backpack, walks with a swagger and goes by the name of Sputnik.

As Prez dithers on the doorstep, Sputnik strolls right past him and introduces himself to everyone in the household. Prez is amazed at the response. The family pat Sputnik on the head, call him a good boy and drop food into his mouth. It seems they all think Sputnik is a dog. It's only Prez who thinks otherwise.

But Prez soon finds himself having to defend the family from the chaos and danger unleashed by Sputnik, as household items come to life - like a TV remote that fast-forwards people: 'Anyone can do it, it's just that people don't read the instructions properly'; and a toy lightsaber that entertains guests at a children's party, until one of them is nearly decapitated by it - and Prez is going to have to use his voice to explain himself.

It turns out that Sputnik is writing a guidebook to Earth called Ten Things Worth Doing on Earth, and he takes Prez on a journey to discover just those 10 things. Each adventure seems to take Prez nearer to the heart of the family he is being fostered by. But they also take him closer to the day that he is due to leave them forever....

©2017 Frank Cottrell Boyce (P)2017 Macmillan Digital Audio

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Rollicking ride with a surprisingly touching heart

I have to confess, when I originally chose this recording it was because it was read by Peter Capaldi, not for the story or author, and I was not disappointed...his animated reading was as delightful as ever, and the extra Scottish twinkle he brought to the story was no doubt the reason he was chosen for this book. What I did not expect , however, was what I thought was a kids book essentially when I started this was in fact, a phenomenally creative and surprisingly touching story to be enjoyed by grandkid and grandparent alike. Now I'm after more by this author and please please Mr Capaldi, I beg of you to please give us the pleasur of your voice and talent to more audio books!

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • k
  • 09-24-18

Peter Capaldi should Narrate More Audiobooks

I found myself laughing out loud at times, and actually shedding tears at other times because of this heartwarming story that was read with such amazing panache by the wonderful Peter Capaldi. He's made it even more entertaining, and his Scottish accent adds authenticity and flavor to the narration.

The book was written for tweens but it strikes a chord even with adults.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Chaotic Story with Sympathetic Characters

Frank Cottrell Boyce's "Cosmic" was a favorite so I was excited to see another of his books hit our state award nominee list. There is a lot... seriously A LOT of activity in this story. And Peter Capaldi kept the intensity high with his narration style (great accent not too hard for kids to understand). But I have to admit that around hour 3 I was tired of the mayhem and ready for it to end happily if possible. I was afraid at first that it was going to have a "too easy" ending with everyone living happily ever after but I shouldn't have been so worried. It was a realistic ending (as realistic as a shape shifting alien story line can be) but satisfying. And then I went and took a nap to recover. If you've never read Cottrell Boyce before start with "Cosmic" and maybe rest up before jumping in to Sputnik's Guide to Life on Earth.

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The story is good and the narrator is also good

The book is good and the narrator is really good as well I give it 9/10👍

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 03-27-18

One of the best stories I have ever heard

We listed to this as a family, with son (11) and daughter (9). It’s both laugh-out-loud funny and really thoughtful. An incredibly well-written story and Peter Capaldi’s telling adds so much. Would recommend to anyone!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Lead Reviewer
  • 12-01-17

Funny

Soooooo funny omg so so so funny I like frank corrall Boyce he is funny

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
  • E. Parke
  • 10-20-17

Great

We've come to love all Frank Cottrell Boyce's books and Sputnik is no exception. The imagination that goes into them and the bending of reality is superb. We read it first at bedtime and I really couldn't do justice to the accents required so I was really glad to see a real Scot narrating it. It's possible that Robbie Coltrane could have done a better job but both are way ahead of me.

The book could be described as one boy's experience of his primary carer falling victim to the onset of dementia and the very real consequences that has for him but if you then go on to say that the arrival of an alien on a mission to save our planet is thrown in it can only make your mind boggle.

It's fabulous. We thoroughly recommend it.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 06-12-18

What a wonderful little surprise

My daughter chose this book because it was narrated by Peter Capaldi, and his performance here was absolutely amazing, we will be hard pressed to find such an engaging narration again! When I heard so many giggles from her while she listened I thought I'd have a listen myself! I was hooked straight away, this story is funny, moving and surprisingly deep for a children's book. It's so nice to find an author who can write a hugely engaging story for children without being patronising! Really just a beautiful, intelligent story with a captivating performance by Peter Capaldi. We look forward to reading more from this author and hope that Peter spoils us with some more narrations in the future!