This is one of the best works of fiction I have read in some time. Richard Paul Evans hits it out of the park with this effort, a fantasy work which features realistic and memorable teen characters, who face evil in the form of a doctor and his staff who wish to control several “special” teens who have gained electrical and other powers. The evil Dr. Hatch sees them as forming an army of unstoppable warrirors who will do his bidding. This is not a short read at 326 pages, but well worth the effort.
Michael Vey is the main protagonist and is a typical fifteen-year old kid who hangs with his friend Ostin, which should have been “Austin” but was spelled differently, and a girl he has his eye on, cheerleader Taylor Ridley. The characters act as typical teens but Vey and Taylor share a common bond, they both have these “special” powers that only 15 others have had, as a result of their birth involving a certain machine. Many others died. The evil Dr. Hatch searches for the final missing two of the seventeen, namely Michael and Taylor. Michael’s mother is kidnapped in an attempt to gain Michael’s cooperation in helping the dastardly doctor reach his fiendish goals.
The book is masterfully crafted, a believable and interesting story with rich characters and is a wholesome read as well, without strong language, which is a refreshing change of pace. Yet potential readers should not be concerned about a possible dull story because of the wholesome language. There is plenty of action and angst-filled moments in the story, and interesting changes which occur to several of the characters. The fantasy element is very well handled and intriguing. And I enjoyed the humor. In one scene, a fat character named Ostin finds himself in an awkward situation and says it felt like being a twinkie on a salad bar.
There are some violent moments which do not cross our level of acceptability, such as characters being shot at or chased and there are characters who endure pain as a result of the “electrical” and mind powers of a few of the characters. It is for the mildly violent moments in this fantasy-based story that we recommend its reading for ages twelve and above, in addition to the fact that it is a story teens and young adults will enjoy a lot. One character can “reboot” other character’s minds with her own mind. This story is imaginative reading for older adults as well who may wish to remember that “high school” feeling of being young and dealing with both awkward and great moments.
We believe that Richard Paul Evans, the author of “The Christmas Box” really showcases his talent in this wonderful fantasy story and we are pleased to award the book our Dove “Family-Approved” Seal in addition to five Doves, which is as good as it gets. A group of good guys is formed in this novel, the “Electroclan” and the book ends with a certain ending which is a bit open-ended and we are told another novel is coming. I want to read the next one!