Friday 10 June 2011

Book Review - Thirteen Days To Midnight

Title: Thirteen Days To Midnight
Author: Patrick Carman
Publisher: Little, Brown Young Readers
Release Date: 3 Jun 2010
ISBN-13: 978-0316004039

You are indestructible. These are the words that transfer an astonishing power to Jacob Fielding that changes everything. After all, there's something addictive about testing the limits of fear, experiencing the thrill of walking through fire, or saving your friend from a beating in front of the whole school. Then Ophelia James, the beautiful and daring new girl in town, suggests that they use the power to do good, to save others at risk of death. But with every heroic act, the power grows into the specter of a curse. How to decide who lives and who dies? And why does darkness seem to be chasing them? Jacob only has thirteen days to figure out how to harness a power that even the world's greatest escape artist could not outrun... and the answer is chilling: What if he has to kill the one he loves to save her?

My Review
I had spotted this book on the shelves of the library a few times and couldn't decide whether to read it or not, then a teenage boy took it out, and when he brought it back he said it was a very good book, one of the best he had read. So I decided to go with this strangers judgement and give it a go.
Jacob Fielding is in a car crash with his foster father, doing 90mph they hit a tree, Jacob lives, his father doesn't. The last words Jacob remembers hearing before the accident are 'You are Indestructible', but these words seem to mean more than he could ever imagine and Jacob discovers that he cannot now be hurt. Punches, kicks, burns, cuts, etc nothing hurts him. When new girl Ophelia arrives in town, Jacob shares the secret with her and his best friend Milo. They decide that they can do incredible good in the world, just think of all the lives that can be saved, but messing with death is a dangerous business and soon the darkness is growing. 
I was a bit slow getting into the book, it's starts right into the storyline and I found myself a little confused, but it is then quite quickly explained. I liked Jacob as a character, he had lost everything in his life and was now carrying some kind of darkness, but he wants to be a good person and tries hard with his friends and current carer. He seems polite and caring, and will do anything for his friends, but at some points in the book I was desperate to yell 'MAN UP! Get a back bone and stand up for yourself' as Ophelia or 'Oh' as she is known will tell him to do something and even if he doesn't agree with it, he will go along with it, because he doesn't want to disappoint them. I wanted him to stand up for himself.
Oh is a strange character, she starts of smart and sweet, a bit of a wild child but full of energy, she slowly becomes darker and more sinister and quite creepy.
The story is told in first person from Jacob's point of view, I quite liked it at first as I felt like I got to know him, but as the story progressed there were a lot of things that Oh and Milo did that were summed up in a couple of sentences that would have been quite good to see, I felt like I was missing part of the story.
Together the trio work to find out exactly how the power works and what it's limits are. It was quite incredible - some of the stuff they tried. It also explains where the power came from and adds a new twist that is quite surprising.
The ending is very fast paced but also very dark and quite disturbing. I was slightly freaked but at the same time couldn't stop.
Overall i think the book was quite well written and the storyline was different and exciting, but I didn't find myself particularly enjoying it or desperate to read it.
I think Teenage boys would enjoy it more, it's darker and more action packed, and if you like that sort of thing, but it just didn't work for me. I'm glad I read it, but wouldn't necessarily look for any more. 

My Rating
I would give this book 6/10, an exciting fast paced read, but just didn't overly spark my interest.   


Aurora Smith said...

the cover looks cool!

barmybex said...

yeah I have to agree with you there, the cover does look cool. :D

T.B. said...

I've heard great things about this one, and the concept sounds really interesting. Haha, I love how you said, "So I decided to go with this strangers judgement and give it a go." Great review, and I can't way to check this one out!

barmybex said...

T.B - concept was good, just don't think the book suited me personally. hope you have a better experience with it if you decide to read it. Thanks for stopping by. :D