Thursday, January 13, 2011

The Angel Experiment

The Angel Experiment
by James Patterson
Maximum Ride #1
Published by Time Warner Book Group

Six unforgettable kids -- with no families, no homes -- are running for their lives. Max Ride and her best friends are products of an experiment: they were engineered to fly. And that's just the beginning of their amazing powers. Now they've escaped, and they need to know who made them, who's hunting them, and why they were designed to be superior to all other humans.

After a couple years of avoiding the craze that is James Patterson, I finally decided to pick up one of his books. I expected an action-packed book that I would rave about for days. I was disappointed.

The beginning was everything I hoped for, but after that it started to trail off and slowed down. Twists that were meant to create tension barely caught my interest. Even when the characters were on a dangerous mission, it felt like they kept taking random side trips. It picked up a little more towards the ending, but it still wasn't anything to talk about.

Out of the flock, Fang was by far my favorite character. Strangely enough, he felt the most round even though there isn't that much known about him due to his silent nature. I still felt like I knew him the best. Angel actually got under my skin from time to time. I know she's young, but she should be growing up fast being on the run so much and yet it's like she doesn't really care sometimes.

Another thing I don't understand is why it seems like Max and Angel have all the special abilities. Nudge has one that comes in handy, but what about Fang and Gasman and Iggy?

I expected the ending to have me on the edge of my seat and closing with a big cliffhanger that had me running out of the house first thing in the morning for the next one. Instead it ended with kind of a soft cliffhanger. I'll gladly read the next book, but it's definitely not top of the list.

Overall: 7.5/10


The biggest issue I had with this book was all the side trips that everyone took on the way to save Angel. I don't blame Max for wanting to help Ella, but I still can't believe she spent a day baking chocolate chip cookies while Angel was in danger. I can understand Nudge's desire to find her parents, but I don't understand why that couldn't wait until Max and Angel were safe again.

I also couldn't believe the complete lack of concern over Max's chip. If it was indeed an activated and working tracker, it would be like a homing beacon when they stormed the school to save Angel.


E.J. Wesley said...

I know it's sacrilege to say, but the 'Max' books are almost too fast paced. (And yes, I know that's the point.) I never really got 'close' to any of the characters, or overly invested in the stories, and I think it's because of the frantic scene pacing, etc.

Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed them, but not as much as I might've expected.

Nice review!