Thursday, October 13, 2016

Street soldier by Andy McNab

After years of running the streets stealing cars and making some trouble with his friends Sean Harker has finally been caught by the Police and sentenced to time in a juvenile detention centre.  On the streets he was never alone, his friends were like family, and two of his "family" are inside with him.  When tragedy hits a little too close to home and Sean is offered a chance to change his life and change his fate he takes it - but that chance at a new future comes at the expense of his old life.  

Sean has finally found a place to call home and a family that lives and fights beside him, a family that offers a chance for a real future.  When he returns home to visit his mother he is disturbed to find how much the old neighbourhood has changed - and not for the better.  When he is offered the chance to help his mother he jumps at the chance, but he should have remembered that money and favours always come with strings attached.  He may have been trained to fight a war overseas but the first war he is going to fight is much closer to home, and getting closer by the day.

Andy McNab has a knack for writing thoroughly engaging stories with young characters that face challenges that would make a lot of adults run for cover.  While Sean is a teenager, that doesn't limit the audience to teenagers, I read this as an adult and thoroughly enjoyed it.  Thanks to authors like McNab, Chris Ryan, and Robert Muchamore there are some amazing books for young adults that are well written and suck the audience in - they also don't pull literary punches, putting their characters into difficult and confronting situations.  

Sean is not perfect and doesn't deserve to be on a pedestal, but he is a well drawn character that has strengths, weaknesses, flaws, and he grows through the course of the story.  The world created around him is realistic and the people who populate his world also ring true, even for someone from a completely different part of the world.  This is a very satisfying read on its own, but I sincerely hope that there are more books in this series to come because I became rather fond of Sean while I read his story, and unlike some of the other young adult spy/secret agent series Sean's story is very real and grounded. 

If you like this book then try:
  • Boy soldier by Andy McNab
  • The Rig by Joe Ducie
  • Sister assassin by Kiersten White
  • The recruit by Robert Muchamore
  • Legend by Marie Lu
  • Subject seven by James A. Moore
  • The industry by Rose Foster
  • Agent 21 by Chris Ryan
  • Article 5 by Kristen Simmons
  • Variant by Robison Wells
  • ACID by Emma Pass
  • Nearly gone by Elle Cosimano
  • Proxy by Alex London

Reviewed by Brilla

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