Title: James Patterson’s Maximum Ride Vol 3
Author: James Patterson & NaRae Lee
Publisher: Yen Press
May Contain Spoilers
Narrowly surviving their encounter with Erasers in New York City, the flock is following up a lead on their pasts in Washington, D.C. But what they find waiting for them is…a home?! How will the flock adjust to a real school – one that doesn’t involve mad scientists and genetic freaks?
Maximum Ride is turning out to be a surprise favorite for me. I had zero expectations going into the series, mainly because I haven’t read anything by James Patterson. Sure, I’ve seen his books everywhere, but I was never interested enough to do more than pick up one or two of his titles to read the synopsis on the back before putting it down again. Now both Maximum Ride and Yen Press’s adaptation of Daniel X are two Patterson series that I am really looking forward to reading more of. Once I started this third volume of Maximum Ride, I could not put it down until I finished it.
I think the engaging characters is the first thing that pulled me into this series. I love Max and her flock. These kids have some pretty cool powers, with the ability to fly being at the top of the list. Their search for a place to fit in, and a desire to know who their parents are is also a compelling backdrop for their story. What kid doesn’t want to fit in? What kid doesn’t have an overwhelming desire to know who they are and how they got to be where they are? This question is especially urgent for Max and her flock – they have all suffered at the hands of unscrupulous scientists, and being the subject of scientific experiments has left them all with emotional scars.
This volume has the kids taking a break. After Fang is badly injured, the FBI swoops down on them and offers a trade-off. They’ll make sure Fang receives the best medical care available, and the kids will have a place to de-stress, but they have to come clean about themselves. Agent Walker gives them a safe place to stay, and before they know it, everyone is forced to act like normal kids. Only that’s not so easy for Max and her family. They aren’t normal kids, and they have no clue how to behave around kids their age.
I enjoyed this volume, because Max and company are thrust into a “normal” situation – they are enrolled in school. I felt that I could relate to them all even better as they each struggled to fit in and not draw unwanted attention to themselves. What would be a mundane day of classes for me is a minefield of uncertainty for them. They don’t know how to trust anyone, and they are so accustomed to being on the run that school, and so many other kids, are an alien concept to them. Throw in the threat of the Erasers, and it’s a wonder that they can concentrate in class at all!
This is the best volume of Maximum Ride yet, and I’m looking forward to digging into volume four.
Review copy provided by publisher