Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Thirteen days to midnight by Patrick Carman

Jacob Fielding is not your average teenager for several reasons - the main one being that when he tells someone that they are indestructible  they become indestructible   He didn't know he could transfer the power to be indestructible, to be immortal, until he passes it along by accident.  That simple act starts a chain of events that no one is prepared for - not Jacob, not his best friend Milo, and not the new girl at school.  As the days pass and they experiment with the power, Jacob begins to feel that there is something dark and dangerous lurking under the surface, something that he is not quite getting.  When he learns the truth about his power he begins a race against time to save himself, his friends, and maybe even his soul.

This is an interesting read, if for no other reason than it asks the question - if you could have any super power in the world, what would it be?  Jacob appears to be an ordinary teenager living with a priest after the tragic death of his guardian in a car accident.  His best friend Milo is your average best friend - nothing special to look at, has a big mouth that gets him into trouble, and has two out-there parents who run a bookstore that specialises in obscure sci-fi and fantasy.  Into this picture comes the unbelievably perfect Ophelia (just call her Oh) and that is the start of the real story. 

Jacob has been given the gift of invincibility - he can't die when he is shot, stabbed, hit by a car, nothing can kill him.  By mistake he finds out that he can pass the power on to someone else and then call it back.  Oh believes they should use the power to save lives, and at first it seems like a solid plan - until they have to make choices about who should live and who should die.  This could have come off as a preachy book, preaching right and wrong, who gets to live, who gets to die - and even could have been mistaken for a philosophy text or religious studies textbook.  What you actually get is a gripping read that keeps you guessing about what is really happening till the last few chapters, and by then you don't care that you may have figured out what is happening because the story drags you along to the satisfying conclusion. 

If you enjoyed this book then try:
  • Out of sight, out of mind by Marilyn Kaye
  • Numbers by Rachel Ward
  • Finding the fox by Ali Sparkes
  • Wolf brother by Michelle Paver

Reviewed by Brilla

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