Sunday, March 13, 2011

I Am Number Four - Pittacus Lore

Summary:  Nine of us came here.  We look like you.  We talk like you.  We live among you.  But we are not  you.  We can do things you dream of doing.  We have powers you dream of having.  We are stronger and faster than anything you have ever seen.  We are the superheroes you worship in movies and comic books - but we are real.

Our plan was to grow, and train, and become strong, and become one, and fight them.  But they found us and started hunting us first.  Now all of us are running.  Spending our lives in the shadows, in places where no one would look, blending in.  We have lived among you without you knowing.

But they know.

They caught Number One in Malaysia.
Number Two in England.
And Number Three in Kenya.

I am Number Four.

I am next.

(Summary from book - Image from barnesandnoble.com )

My Review:  I am Number Four is a romantic young adult sci-fi novel and an extremely easy read. It had an immediate hook, with a prologue that caught my attention and a premise that held it for most of the book. It took me about 295 pages before I even thought to write down more than a few sentences of notes (and the book is only 440 pages long).

My favorite part of this book was the emergence of John Smith/Number Four’s supernatural powers and his attempts to navigate a new school without revealing his identity. John’s efforts to control his powers, hone them, and hide them, provided quite a few situations that were interesting and, at times, humorous or surprising. I also liked the moments of initial attraction between John and Sarah and the problems that their relationship created both within the school and for John in general. This book will delight the less discerning YA reader and entertain older fans who don’t mind a little predictability, a few knight-in-shining-armor moments, and some occasionally cheesy dialog.

I am Number Four started out strong, but lost momentum towards the end. I could handle the moments of predictability, but once the Mogadorians emerged as an immediate threat my interest began to wane. They felt cartoonish with their pale skin, pointy teeth, trench coats, and low brimmed hats, and I had a hard time taking them seriously. Also, once John and Sarah’s romance progressed past the initial stages of attraction, I lost the connection between them. It just fizzled out. Oh, there was love professed, but it felt wooden and unrealistic. I think the final battle was my least favorite part of the book. While I loved the addition of another character, the rest was sloppy and rushed with some all out absurdity for good measure.  The ending does, however, provide closure with enough room for the sequel, The Power of Six, releasing August 23, 2011.

Despite its flaws, I can see why this book was chosen for the big screen. It was quite cinematic and held numerous possibilities for action, romance, and impressive special effects. If the Mogadorian’s manage to get their scare on and John and Sarah are well-cast, the movie has the potential to be better than the book. 

My Rating: 3.5 Stars

For the sensitive reader: Some scattered profanity and ever so slightly gory violence.

Sum it up: An exciting premise with less than satisfactory execution.

2 comments:

Jillian said...

I am excited to read this one. I haven't seen the movie yet, but might when the DVD comes out.

Tribute Books Mama said...

thanks! for sharing, I don't know if this is for me.

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