My Alien Life

A Novelette

Narrated by April Doty
This title was previously available on NetGalley and is now archived.
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Pub Date 27 Dec 2022 | Archive Date 6 Nov 2023

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A sassy and sweet coming-of-age story full of laughter, tears, and everyday strangeness.

"My mother was a no-nonsense woman. If it wasn’t in the Bible or on Jerry Springer, then it couldn’t happen. Of course, there’s a lot of freaky stuff in the Good Book, with ladders to heaven and angels with animal faces and such. And crazy, muckraking talk shows probably aren’t the best yardstick for anything short of how depraved humans can be. But the point is that when she was abducted by aliens and impregnated with me, she had some trouble processing.” (Lynette, aged 9)

So begins this heartwarming, speculative tale of an unusual child who finds a home–and love–with her feisty Great-great-aunt Magnolia Rose McClellan.

Set in rural, coastal North Carolina and narrated in an engagingly authentic southern accent, this little piece of Southern fiction will entertain young and old alike!

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A sassy and sweet coming-of-age story full of laughter, tears, and everyday strangeness.

"My mother was a no-nonsense woman. If it wasn’t in the Bible or on Jerry Springer, then it couldn’t happen...

Advance Praise

"Peer Review of audiobook on BookBub: (5 star)

"I wasn't sure what to expect going into this novelette, but I fell instantly and wholly in love with it. The writing is beautiful, the characters are fully developed and likeable. I was captivated by the story from the start. As much as I hated to see it end, I also think where it ended made perfect sense. I'm just greedy and wanted more, lol. I actually listened to the audiobook. The narrator did a wonderful job. I loved the story so much I'll be adding it to my Kindle, too." -- Heather Huffman, author of Nora Jones Mysteries series

Review of ebook on Goodreads: (5 stars)

"The writing of J. Martain absolutely captivated me throughout. Every bit of dialogue and every descriptive word paints a vivid and imaginative picture that allows the reader to completely immerse themselves in Lynette’s world. Lynette’s strong, realistic, and precocious personality just jumps off the page. Mags’ no-nonsense manner does not hide her loving nature, and she begins showing Lynette how to care for herself at a very young age. Together they are an unlikely pair—a woman in her 90s and a preteen, but they become a family. This is a lifetime of a story in four chapters and I highly recommend it to anyone who loves stories with strong characters." -- Bonnie DeMoss / Bonnie Reads and Writes

Review of audiobook on

"Amazing!! 10star!!" -- Vicki G., Verified Purchase

"Peer Review of audiobook on BookBub: (5 star)

"I wasn't sure what to expect going into this novelette, but I fell instantly and wholly in love with it. The writing is beautiful, the characters are...

Available Editions

EDITION Audiobook
ISBN 9781734275452
DURATION 1 Hours, 1 Minutes

Available on NetGalley

NetGalley Shelf App (AUDIO)

Average rating from 55 members

Featured Reviews

What a great coming-of-age short story and an easy listen while I tended to my own small garden on this beautiful summer day!
It left me wanting more. The narrator was easy to listen to and matched the overall feel of the book. Don’t let the title scare you away if you aren’t into extraterrestrials. Ha!
This is my first exposure to J.Martain, but I will be searching for more. This book reminded me of the simple southern, but thoughtful, writing of Joshilyn Jackson. I really enjoyed it.
Thank you #netgalley and #BooksGoSocialAudio for #MyAlienLife advance copy. This is also my fulfillment of a square on my August bingo card #netgalleybingo. Thank you!

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I adored this heartwarming book about 9-year-old Lynette who is orphaned and grows up with her 90-something great aunt Magnolia. The characters are quirky and endearing, and the story is so touching. I know this one will stay with me.

The audiobook narrator was excellent. I recommend listening to this one.

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LOVE the narrator of this book. Her voice is pleasing and easy to listen to and her southern accent is charming.

This audiobook is a super sweet coming of age story of love and bonding between two unlikely family members.

Full of emotion and endearing. I didn’t want this story to end.

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Family Drama and Promise Keeping
Young Lynette did not remember her mother. She was raised in rural North Carolina by her hard-working father. When Lynette's father died, the only relative willing to take Lynette was her great, great Aunt Magnolia.
Lynette was nine years old and Aunt Mag promised to stay alive until Lynette was sixteen years old.

This is the poignant story of Lynette's seven years with her Great-great-aunt Magnolia Rose McClellan, the oldest sister of her mother's great-grandmother. Aunt Mag didn't have very much money, but she taught Lynette the meaning of love, commitment, and family.

The narration of the audiobook is very good. The southern dialect makes the characters come to life.

My Thoughts
I listened to the audiobook and I also read a digital copy of the book. The narration of the audiobook is awesome and I enjoyed listening to the story. The characters were very authentic and I felt great empathy for Lynette, especially after her father died. I was not sure about her future with Aunt Mag, but the more I listened the more I realized that Lynette was in the right place.

Aunt Mag was totally committed to raising Lynette and keeping her promise. This short story will make your heart smile.

My Rating: 5 Stars Out of 5

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Very short novella. Reviewed the audiobook version of the novella (it was an hour in length).. I really enjoyed it.

Young girl is orphaned and an elderly aunt takes charge.

Definitely worth your time to listen to this one. Loved it.

Narrated by April Doty who did a great job!

Thank you to NetGalley (for once yet again) introducing me to an author that I've decided to follow. Thank you for the opportunity to review the advance listen copy of My Alien Life in exchange for an honest review. Thank you to author J. Martain and publisher BooksGoSocial Audio for approving my ARC request. Publication date is 27 Dec 2022. (Only 50 ratings so far, this one definitely deserves a bit more attention.)

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"My Alien Life" by J. Martain is a Southern Fiction Novella!

If you're hoping for a "speculative tale", as the synopsis promises, you'll need to look elsewhere. What you'll find here is a Coming-of- Age story in the first person voice of a girl named Lynette.

When Lynette is nine years old, her daddy dies and the only relative willing to take her in is her fierce, six-foot tall, boisterous Great-Great-Aunt-Magnolia-Rose. She's a big presence who's never afraid to speak her mind.

Mags, for short, is the oldest sister of Lynette's Great-Great-Grandmother on her mother's side. That would make Mags about how old, do you think? Does older than dirt come to mind?

The only question Mags asks Lynette is if she can take care of herself after she turns sixteen and, if she can, Mags will take care of her and stay alive until that day. After they each make their promise to the other, they begin a quiet, simple life together in Mags little trailer down a road in rural North Carolina...

"My Alien Life" audiobook is a quick, satisfying one hour listen that covers a lot of living, loving, and caring during the seven years Lynette and her Aunt Mags live together, and at the end of the day, you'll wonder who needs who more. The narrator, April Doty, does a great job of giving Southern authenticity to this story with her exceptional voicing.

The "alien" part, you ask? Well now, you'll just need to listen to the story like I did, won't you?

"My Alien Life" is a great way to fill an hour of your time and I recommend it to those who enjoy Southern Fiction, like I do, or have an interest in trying it on for size!


Thank you to NetGalley, BooksGoSocial Audio, and J. Martain for an ALC of this book. It has been an honor to give my honest and voluntary review.

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My Alien Life
J. Martain
Author J. Martain offers readers a unique short story. The main character is a child who goes to live with her Great-Great-Aunt Magnolia after her father passes away. The setting is North Carolina. The story is narrated by the main character Lynette. She was sent to live with her Great-Great-Aunt Magnolia (Mags) when she was nine years old. Mags offers Lynette love, consistency, self-reliance, self-confidence, how to sew, how to garden and a deep concern for nature and holistic living. Mags and Lynette made a Pac to live together until Lynette turned 16 then Lynette would have to leave. There were those who fought the arrangement due to the age of Mags but with the help of the Deputy Mags and Lynette were allowed to make a home together.
I enjoyed this tale but wish it were longer. Thank you to Netgalley for the review copy of My Alien Life. As always my review is my unbiased opinion.

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The description of a child being conceived by aliens hooked me, but... that isn't at all what was in this book. It was mentioned in the first paragraph, and that was literally it.

That first paragraph was MAGIC. What a great opening. The author did a great job encapsulating a lot in such a short story, but it didn’t draw me in as much I’d have liked (again, I was promised aliens). If the intention is to turn this into a mini series, perhaps that would be worth a look.

The narration in the audiobook was done very, very well. If it weren't for the stellar narration and the writing style, this would be a 2 star for me because of the bait and switch, but I'm giving it 4, because even though it's parading under false pretenses, that first paragraph and the narration won me over.

Again, still mad about the lack of aliens.

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4.5 stars

Such a short, sweet story. I loved all the focus on gardening and growing things. I only wished we knew what happened after that. I wouldn't really call it speculative, but it is worth a read.

Thanks to the author, publisher, and NetGalley for an advanced copy in exchange for an honest opinion.

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This is lovely, sweet, and thoughtful tale of a young girl’s life. This is a very short novella. I’d like to hear more from this author. It was touching.

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Audiobook received for free through NetGalley

An awesome sweet soul wrenching story. So glad I came across it. Perfect for a quick story while washing dishes.

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What an absolutely charming story! I loved the feistiness of the characters and the emphasis put on what family truly means.

When Lynette, age 9, is effectively orphaned when her father dies since she has no clue where her mother is, her great-great-aunt takes her in. She's a known "character" around town with a distinct sense of right and wrong. She has no problem with schooling those who are up to no good and bringing them down a peg or two. Yet her tender care for Lynette was incredibly heartwarming as she set about the task of teaching the girl how to be self-sufficient by the age of 16.

I will admit that the part about Lynette's mother confused me a bit. If she was impregnated by aliens and Lynette was the presumed result (or some rumors have it), then how did her beloved father come into the picture to take care of her?

But the whole rest of the story works so well that the alien bit seemed truly unnecessary to me. It was just a simple, country story with feisty characters and a deep-seated sense of the love and importance of family.

Thank you to J. Martain, BooksGoSocial Audio, and NetGalley for an advance review copy.

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I just finished listening to My Alien Life. It's a sweet story about an orphaned 9 year old girl who's taken in by a feisty great aunt.

My Alien Life would make a great beach read or listen. I would highly recommend this title to anyone seeking a light, fun read.

In the interest of full disclosure, I received a free digital audio copy of this book from Net Galley.


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Such a cute story!! Fingers crossed for a second novelette that picks up where this left off.

Thanks to #NetGalley and the publisher for early access to this book in exchange for an honest review.

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The audio book version is full of pathos, yet the sassy characters also made me smile. Thank you to BooksGoSocial and NetGalley for the ARC. The views expressed are all mine, freely given.

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I wanted a short audiobook and I saw my friend Marilyn's review for this and of course immediately downloaded it.

This is a unique story about a suddenly orphaned little girl, aged 9, set in rural North Carolina. When her daddy, whom she loves dearly, dies, there isn't much family that she has left. But her very feisty Great-great-aunt Magnolia Rose McClellan steps up to the task. Most thought that she was too old to raise a little girl but she promised that she would live until she reached her 16th birthday and knew how to take care of herself.

We follow her with her aunt Maggie as she learned to tend a wonderful garden and eat healthy food. She also learned how to sew - including curtains for her new room and a bedspread! She was made to go to school and found that she was a good student!

When the social workers came to call, Maggie found a way to keep taking care of her little charge. She managed to "sweet talk" the deputy and show her how much the little girl was really learning.

This is a short novella so I won't say any more.

I loved the southern charm and the narrator, April Doty, did a wonderful job with all of the voices.

Though this little girl was a bit short changed in life she was fortunate to have people who loved her!! Sometimes love and learning, a house and good food is all that you need for a good life.

I loved this short novella!

I received the audiobook from the publisher through NetGalley and BooksGoSocial. It was my pleasure to listen to and review this novella.

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My Alien Life A Novelette
by J. Martain, narrated by April Doty

What a sweet story! The only thing that I wish was different about this short story is that I wish we could follow sixteen year old Lynette on the next leg of her journey through life. I'm going to think things work out for her because she's very intelligent and her Great-great-aunt Magnolia Rose McClellan, and Lynette's daddy before her, had brought Lynette up right. You'll have to take Lynette's word for it about her mother although that is her late father's version of how it all happened so maybe there was some fabrication in the telling.

April Doty's voice was perfect for this audiobook.

Thank you to BooksGoSocial Audio and NetGalley for this ARC.

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Another book from NetGalley , this is my honest review of this short story . The narrator was really great doing the voices of the characters — the characters are so lovely I would love to read more about these characters . For a short story — it quickly draws you in and gets you invested in the story . I find the great aunt really reminded me of my great grandmother who I grew up with — so I could relate a bit to the situation. This is a great story of community and neighbors supporting each other and how getting to grow up with older generations can be helpful to learning and growing an understanding of the world and others . I asked my grandmother to make a similar promise as they made in the book — what a lovely story of family and community— I could only hope the author would write whole novel about these characters ! Loved it !

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This story of growing up and love and loss is a beautiful and moving tale. Hard to believe how much impact such a short story could have, but it’s absolutely lovely.

April Doty did a fantastic job narrating the audiobook.

Thank you J. Martain, BooksGoSocial Audio, and NetGalley for providing this ALC for review consideration. All opinions expressed are my own.

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