Literature / Space Brat

A series of children's books written by Bruce Coville about an alien named Blork. In Blork's society, babies and children are generally silent and well-behaved, but Blork had a bit of eggshell lodged behind his ear after he hatched, and wouldn't stop crying. Because of this, the computers labeled him "brat", and ever since he's been considered a brat all over his planet.

As you can imagine, growing up the go-to scapegoat among his peers left poor Blork terribly resentful. When everyone decides to blame you if a class pet gets loose and eats the furniture, or someone carves a swear word in the wall with lasers, life can be rough. It's a good thing that Blork can live up to his reputation when necessary - by throwing the loudest, wildest, most explosive tantrums in the galaxy!

This series provides examples of:

  • Abusive Alien Parents: Blork's species lays eggs and don't raise their own young. Rather, they have computers raise hatchlings instead.
  • Author Appeal: (Of an innocent sort) Bruce Coville, a former schoolteacher, adds features to the alien school system that are clearly idealized. In particular, it's considered common sense that no class can have more than 16 students, whereas in the current American system most classes have double or triple that number. Also, during a museum visit the teacher buys a "bubble of silence" which, when placed over someone's head, renders them mute.
  • Beware the Silly Ones: The Dips from the fourth book.
  • Big Friendly Poodnoobie: Lunk.
  • Bratty Half-Pint: Blork.
  • Call a Rabbit a "Smeerp": Blork's dog poodnoobie, Lunk.
  • Chekhov's Skill: The ability to throw tantrums ends up coming in handy.
  • Cloud Cuckoo Land: The planet of the Dips, a race whose hat is mind-boggling stupidity.
  • Eleventh Hour Superpower: Blork's tantrums, when no other options are present. He can throw them at will, but they're demonstrably more effective when actually spurred by emotion.
  • Evil Twin: When Blork gets into a complete copying machine in the second book, it makes a negative copy of him, named Krolb.
  • Expy: Some of the characters names are a spoof of those from Star Wars.
    • Old Bebop Kenoobie, a spoof of Obi-Wan Kenobi.
    • Yoo-Hoo, a spoof of Yoda.
  • Jerk Ass: Squat, a diminutive space lord who fancies himself Blork's arch nemesis.
  • Law of Alien Names: Played as straight as humanly possible.
  • Lizard Folk: The creatures Blork encounters in the first book in the series.
  • Mad Scientist: Dr. Pimento.
  • Mechanistic Alien Culture: The main aliens are stereotypical green humanoids with antennae who hatch from eggs. Their children are raised by computers and public officials, and many other elements of their society are highly impersonal.
  • Prehistoric Monster: Blork and company encounter many of these in the fifth book when they are warped backwards in time to Splat during its prehistoric state.
  • Rubber-Forehead Aliens: Surprising for a Coville book. Blork's species is pretty much physically identical to humans except for their green skin, lack of a nose and antennae.
  • Sdrawkcab Name: Blork's evil clone in the second book is named Krolb.
  • Then Let Me Be Evil: Blork was labeled by the computer nanny as a brat soon after hatching from his egg, all due to his having a piece of shell stuck behind his antenna and crying in pain because of it. Since then, he was the boy who cried wolf, and constantly marked as an easy person to stick the blame on. After putting up with it for a while, he winds up throwing a temper tantrum at how unfair it all was, which was unheard of for his species. Which then gives him a very easy out for whenever he gets blamed for something from then on, leading to this trope.
  • Took a Level in Badass: Squat in the third book is much more of a genuine threat. Also, he Dual Wields laser guns and has three more on his belt, rather than just the one from his first appearance.
  • Unstoppable Rage: Seriously. Blork's rage is astronomic. It has altered landforms and changed entire societies' interstellar outlook.