Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Review - I AM NUMBER FOUR

I Am Number Four (Lorien Legacies #1) - "Pittacus Lore"
Genre: YA Science Fiction/Paranormal (aliens count as paranormal, right?)
# of pages: 430 (hb)
Publisher: HarperTeen
I Am Number Four @ Parental Book Reviews
I was especially excited to read this book because, as of now, I can't think of another "alien book" that I'd ever read, and it's always exciting to try something brand-new.

Simply put, I Am Number Four was a fun, enjoyable and incred
ibly action-packed read. It's a title that I would definitely recommend to all of you!
There are some things about alien books that I expected to be included here, and so to a certain extent, Number Four was a bit predictable and not exactly a "high suspense" kind of book. There's one planet that's been destroyed by a bigger, meane
r planet (read: Star Trek's Romulans... and I can't believe I just wrote that. You see, I come from an in-your-face Star Warsy family) Anyway, the fugitive aliens from Lorien have been hiding away on Earth for several years, waiting for their legacies (powers) to develop. That's the general premise.
There's not a lot of suspense, but there is a lot of action, and on top of that, the author really gave a lot of attention to detail regardi
ng the culture and background history of Lorien and rival planet Mogador (I read that and thought "MORDOR"!). The action sequences were very well done. While over-all physical descriptions were a little sparse, the action sequences were written with an eye for detail. A reader like me, who appreciates action sequences more than other elements, will like this.
Characterization time. I read a lot of reviews (many of yours!) before I started Number Four, and so I prepared myself for less-than-impressive characterization. Actually, I was pleasantly surprised. The main characters - Number Four and his guardian, Henri, as well as Four's love interest, Sarah, and nerdy space-obsessed best friend, Sam, all seemed to be strong enough characters. Could there have been more character developm
ent? Oh yeah. Sarah in particular could have had some more work done - there was just something about her that just seemed underdeveloped, and her dialogue segments with Four were a little too sugary sweet. However, I would rather have a love interest who's too nice than mean and snappy. *shrugs*
There's one thing in particular that I want to praise Four for, and it's something that's pretty hard to do. The pacing of this novel was practically perfect. I
know that's probably not a big deal for most folks, but I can't help but notice if a novel drags on in the middle, or at the beginning, or if it wraps up too quickly. Number Four followed the 'literary structure' almost to the letter: the final action sequences, in particular, were timed *perfectly*. All the story-elements, plot wise, came together very nicely, making Number Four a very neat, precise read.
All in all:
For me, characters could have had a little more depth to the
m, and the writing style was sometimes choppy: "Pittacus Lore" makes Katniss Everdeen sound like Wordsworth. However, I was pleasantly surprised by just how much I enjoyed this book. I Am Number Four will definitely be an amazing movie! Got an interest in aliens or science fiction? Just looking for a fun, quick action-packed read? This is the perfect holiday book.

Final Grade
:


9 shout-outs!:

Natalie (Mindful Musings) said...

My roomie really enjoyed this one. She got to read my copy before I did! I'll be reading it eventually, since it's sitting on my shelf. Hopefully sooner rather than later, because I'd like to see the movie version coming out next year!

Erika said...

Great detailed review! It's so hard to find a book with absolutely perfect pacing, so it's great to hear that this one is one of the few. In all honesty, I pretty much ignored this one for a while, but now, I really want to read it. I've always been the type to want to read the books before watching movie adaptations. Looking forward to picking up a copy soon!

La Coccinelle said...

It appears that the book was written with a movie in mind, so I'm not surprised you said what you did.

I don't want to give James Frey any more money or publicity, though, so I won't be reviewing (or even reading) this book.

Audrey (holes In My brain) said...

Thanks for your review! I'm actually starting this book this weekend and I haven't really read any reviews so my expectations aren't too high. I think the movie sucked me in, but definitely not the idea of James Frey :p

Stephany said...

Wow, incredible review! I completely agree with everything you said! :) I cannot wait for the movie, especially since Alex Pettyfer and the adorable boy from Flipped will be in it (whoo!). I am Number Four was really addicting for me, even though, yes, characters and writing needed a little work, but I still really enjoyed it.

Tara. said...

I'm halfway through this book right now and I totally agree with you on the characterization, but I do think since it is the first book of a new series we will know more about the characters in the other books.

Also, thanks for not writing any spoilers! can't wait to finish this book.

Alexia561 said...

Great review! I really enjoyed this book as well, and looking forward to the movie version. BTW, loved the Star Trek reference! :D

Melissa said...

SO glad to see you liked it, Amelia! I was quite the fan of it, and while Sarah's flat character annoyed me, I really though it was well-done overall :)

Kristina Barnes♥ said...

Awesome review! Pacing is a big thing for me - I'm a stickler for pacing. I will mention/rag on it to no ends. I haven't read this book, but I've been mildly piqued about it from all of the reviews I've been reading. I can't say I'm about to rush out and buy it, but I'm definitely wanting to give this novel a try based on what you've said about it. (I absolutely LOVE your reviews; they're so thorough and well-rounded, and I know I can always trust them! xP)

 
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