Source: Publisher, Netgalley
Publication Date: Sept 2011
Short Synopsis (Goodreads): Luke King knows a lot of things. Like four different ways to disarm an enemy before the attacker can take a breath. Like every detail of every book he’s ever read. And Luke knows enough—just enough—about what his father does as a black ops infiltrator to know which questions not to ask. Like why does his family move around so much?
Luke just hopes that this time his family is settled for a while. He’ll finally be able to have a normal life. He’ll be able to ask the girl he likes to take a ride with him on his motorcycle. He’ll hang out with his friends. He’ll be invisible—just as he wants.
But when his dad goes missing, Luke realizes that life will always be different for him. Suddenly he must avoid the kidnappers looking to use him as leverage against his father, while at the same time evading the attention of the school’s mysterious elite clique of Russian hipsters, who seem much too interested in Luke’s own personal secret. Faced with multiple challenges and his emerging paranormal identity, Luke must decide who to trust as he creates his own destiny.
My Review: It's hard to say what caught my attention first about this book. I love wolves, werewolves in particular; the premise sounded engaging; the cover simple but catching (though yellow and red aren't my favorite colors together, this seems to work).
Once I started the book I found it interesting, particularly in that we are inside the head of Luke and he is quite a knowledgeable kid. All his little tidbits and asides were one part fascinating (I'll admit it, I took some notes as there are some real facts involved), one part conceited and one part distracting. While I liked how into detail things got....this also kind of made the book heavy to read even though it wasn't particularly deep. It took me a while to get through it...but I did get through it and ultimately liked it, which matters more I think, in the long run.
The most original part of the book, and what I found the most interesting, was that these werewolves aren't like your normal werewolves that have the wolf inside them, no, these werewolves are more like selkies than anything else. The skin is separate from them and they have to protect it. I thought that this was clever and this is the first time I've come across something like this.
Other than that though, not too much else was original, but it was bearable. The other characters tried to become three dimensional, but it felt forced. Luke is too dominate a narrator so we only really get to know him and everyone else is how he sees them. Nothing wrong with this, it just wasn't as fleshed out as it could have been.
Overall, an interesting read, different from your regular paranormal teenage werewolves. Also, I learned some Russian. That's always cool. (by the way, 'cool' in Russian is 'klassni'....just in case you wanted to impress someone).