Friday, April 4, 2014

Michael Vey: The Prisoner of Cell 25

Title: The Prisoner of Cell 25

Series: Michael Vey

Year: 2011

Author: Richard Paul Evans

Summary: To everyone at Meridian High School, Michael Vey is an ordinary fourteen-year-old. In fact, the only thing that seems to set him apart is the fact that he has Tourette’s syndrome. But Michael is anything but ordinary. Michael has special powers. Electric powers.

Michael thinks he's unique until he discovers that a cheerleader named Taylor also has special powers. With the help of Michael’s friend, Ostin, the three of them set out to discover how Michael and Taylor ended up this way, but their investigation brings them to the attention of a powerful group who wants to control the electric children – and through them the world. Michael will have to rely on his wits, powers, and friends if he’s to survive. (from Goodreads)

Main Characters:
~ Michael Vey
~ Taylor Ridley
~ Ostin Liss

Review: When I first picked up this book, I had absolutely no idea what I was getting myself into. Richard Paul Evans, of course... the famous author of The Christmas Box and those other inspirational, cozy tales. Why then, does this book have a picture with a boy covered in electricity? It sparked my interest, and when my dad (a big fan of Evans's stories) got the book, I merely inquired if I could read it when he was done. 

Wow. This book in many ways reminds me of the Percy Jackson series, and yet it doesn't in other ways. It's got the action, fun narrative, lively characters that we all want in a good story, but the whole "atmosphere" of the story is something totally different. Michael tells the tale in first person (with a few chapters being told in third person from another MC's viewpoint), and we learn at once that he's different from other kids - he's electric. He can shock, surge, and pulse (a talent that comes in handy at times, especially when his mom's car battery goes dead). If you like science fiction, anything having to do with electricity, stories with a technological feel, or just something with a good adventure, then this is a good story for you. The villain is despicable, yet crafty, sometimes making you wonder who's really right and who's really wrong, and you're on the edge of your seat rooting for Michael the whole time. While this is the first in the series, I found the ending very satisfying, yet it does end in a cliffhanger. Just so you're warned. You're going to want the second book right away.

While I liked Michael and thought him an excellent hero, some of his best friend's chapters (Taylor) got a little annoying. I read someone else's review of one of the Michael Vey books, and I'd have to agree with his/her (sorry, folks, I don't remember who it was) opinion that the female characters seem a little flat. Nichelle was vicious, but weak and predictable, and McKenna and Abigail really didn't do a whole lot, which I was a bit disappointed in, as I would have liked to see more of them. Tara, I thought, had the most depth to her, and while I won't discuss it further for spoiler reasons, she was one female character that I actually enjoyed reading about. I'm hoping their characters (as well as their character development) go further in the second book, Rise of the Elgen.

Advisory: There is a lot of modern "lingo" as it were as the kids in the story use words such as "hot," "cute," and "make out" that bothered me. Although most of the characters are around fifteen years old, they do some adult stuff (i.e. drink champagne, patronize rock concerts, etc.). A few descriptions included in the book I thought could have been left out, so I'd recommend that this book be for mature readers 15 or over (the bully at school pants-ing another classmate, cheerleaders, etc.). 

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Click here to buy The Prisoner of Cell 25 on Amazon!

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