* Prices may differ from that shownMore Offers
I have grown a bit tired of James Patterson of late. His Alex Cross books have now begun to feel too repetitive and as though they have long outstayed their welcome and Patterson seems to release a new book nearly every month as they were going out of fashion; some written on his own, more though, recently, with co-authors.
This latest effort, aimed at a younger audience that I feel goes better with his writing style, is just such a collaboration; written no doubt to cash in on the Harry Potter franchise/ marketing machine that shortly will begin coming to an end. It is set in a world not too different from our own except for one small matter; magic exists!
Siblings Whit and Wisty, like most people, are ignorant of this fact until the night their home is raided by Armed Forces under the control of The New Order ~ the fanatical Goverment that has seized power swiftly and almost overnight and brought in all manner of dictatoral rules and regulations. One of these is No Magic and when Whit and Wisty are accused of being Witch and Wizard, they are quickly rounded up and taken to a new prison complex situated in a former aslyum. The problem is, as the siblings quickly realise, the accusations are true ansd a mysterious Prophecy has identified them as the only two people with the power to overthrow this New World Order!
Anyone who has read Patterson before will have a good idea what to expect! The plot moves at a ferocious pace and there is little let up from start to finish. It is fairly short and easy to read and I finished this in a matter of hours. It is also fairly light-hearted ~ poking fun, as it does, not just at the afore mentioned Harry Potter but also Patterson's own work! (There is a jokey reference to kids with wings which is a in-joke nod at his earlier Maximum Ride series which started as a couple of adult thrillers before being re-written for a younger audience!)
If you're looking for anything clever, look away now. This is very standard Patterson with little substance, short, punchy chapters and little emphasis on back story or character. I think it will really appeal to the young teen market it is aimed at and, as the first part of a series, has real potential to continue and build on its opening!
Anyone else though may find this a bit too flash-in-the-pan. For me, I took it just as I expected it to read and just for what it was; an enjoyable romp that is not over-complicated and over before you realise. In many ways this, like much of Patterson's work, is the literary equivalent of a happy meal!