Friday, April 19, 2019

Siege by Chris Ryan

Max Johnson is an orphan, which is lonely in more ways than one - but Max doesn't let it get him down.  Living in a residential care home gives him a place to live and call home, but it doesn't give him a family.  He throws himself into activities like Combined Cadet Force training, and because he excels at it his school pays for him to attend a week long camp climbing in the Lakes District.  All Max dreams about is joining the Army when he grows up, and the camp will add another layer to his skills - even if he has to put up with being the outsider because his fellow campers know he is an orphan living in a care home.

When disaster strikes on a big climb, it is Max who has to come to the rescue - using his knowledge of climbing gained from experience, YouTube, and books to help pull them out of a dangerous and life threatening situation.  Max didn't step in for fame and glory, but he also didn't expect to be whisked away in a helicopter by a mysterious man who won't even tell Max who he is.  The mystery is soon unraveled when Max discovers that the man has brought him to the Special Forces Cadets selections camp.  Max is determined to make the most of being at the camp, but not everyone is happy he is there and joining the Special Forces Cadets is going to be an uphill fight.  Can Max prove himself and finish the grueling selection test?

Siege is the start of a new series by Chris Ryan, and if the first book is anything to go on this series has great promise.  From the start it is easy to connect with Max and his story, and through the story that connection and sympathy grows stronger.  Ryan has a knack for writing series that are easy to believe are real, the training and testing Max and the rest of the teenagers go through seems quite realistic - as do the individual traits and characteristics of each person.  

The writing style is punchy and moves at a rapid pace which adds some nice tension to the story but doesn't bury you in detail.  In short - this is another fantastic teen read from Chris Ryan and hopefully the rest of the series is just as good as it means there will be quite a few good books to look forward to over the coming years.

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Reviewed by Brilla

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