Thank you so much HBG Canada for providing a copy of the book for an honest review!
I like to say that even with a girl on the cover, I did like the cover. It was detailed intricate and very, well, mysterious.
When I first started reading the book, I was not a fan of how Tandy talked to the reader. It sounded like she was talking to the readers and I just wanted to shout to her that this is not a blog post, stop it. But I liked Tandy as a character. She didn't felt much emotions. But she could be hot-headed and could act like a "child". You know what I mean right? No? Her head could get to her and she would talk at the wrong time when she was mad. She was like me.
For example, once I got pissed when my internet started to go in and out on me (for a week). And during that week, I was doing an online pre-midterm quiz. I got mad because I didn't complete it due to the internet outage. Fair enough, I didn't knew the answers but still, I didn't want that to happen when I knew the answer. So I almost called Rogers and gave them a lecture about stupid online assignments but my mom stopped me since my tone would be horrible and the conversation might have included a bit of swearing.
So now you know a bit about me and Tandy. Tandy, like me, couldn't sing or play an instrument. The whole Angel family was complicated. Wait what? Tandy's real name is Tandoori? Her father named her after a clay stove? Tandoor is a clay stove used in West Indian cooking. I don't have a problem with that but why is she the only one that has a weird name?
Harry, Tandy's twin, loved to smile. The description of Harry made me love him: curly hair, Harry Potter glasses and he had asthma. Awwww! You can say he is the "weakling" of the Angels. A lot of the times I thought Harry was the youngest even though Hugo was. He also loved the arts.
Hugo was kind of build for strength. He was in grade 5 and was pretty kickass. But Hugo was adorable too! Listen to this:
"...Hugo had climbed around Matthew's body and was on his back, looking at the cops over his brother's shoulder."
I mean REALLY?! That was totally what Meelo would had done! You perfect little child! I love you!
Wow, people hold me. That was my reaction when I first read about Matthew. Matthew was the eldest of the Angels (in some way, you have to read the book to see what I mean). All I can say is that if he was in a manga, it would be Kuroko no Basket. He was a super, a cut above all other, amazing, superhero athlete. I mean ARE YOU KIDDING ME JAMES?!
"...he seemed to draw all the light and air to him...intense blue eyes...six-two...".
If Aomine had Kuroko's eyes (and had light brown dreadlocks), I would call him Matthew. So you can imagine me fangirling over Matt right? But the thing is, Aomine will always be my number one, sorry Matt. And as I read on, my attraction kind of disappeared. I don't know, he was just not...my type? He was easily angered, kind of scary and I don't know, had a bit of a fame-whore issue (only in parts though)?
Uncle Peter seemed like the slimy, greasy creep. The neighbours were all odd. They each had their own motive.
She was the assistant for Maud, the mother, and I didn't felt like she had anything that stood out. It was as it I couldn't really picture her with any special features. To be honest, I never really pictured a face on her (Scary, but true).
Plot + Other
Loved how the chapters were short. And as my sister told me, James is known for his short chapters. Well sir, I salute you for that!
I found this book unique in the sense that it had "Confession" chapters where in these pages, Tandy would confess some of the things that happened in the Angel family. I loved reading these chapters.
About 50 pages in I began speculating, and wondering what are some possible ending. This book was perfect for those who like to guess what happens next. :) This book was like the board game Clues came to life. The story really reminded me of Virals by Kathy Reichs, it had the balance of everything. The story was for YA who enjoy mystery with just a tiny hint of something else (which I can't tell you because it would be spoilers). I found myself involved in finding out the truth. Like Nancy Drew, Tandy was a good "detective". And for the readers who are familiar with the Detective Conan manga, I felt some elements of the manga in this book.
For example when Tandy was asking CSI Joyce about her parents' death, I felt a similarity with Conan, as if he was asking CSI Joyce the same question without Ran's father finding out and punching the hell out of him.
I think the novel was just a bit bland and boring. There wasn't fast paced, high action going on. I felt like I was drinking a luked-warm soup. But there were some places where I felt flavours. There were a few things that stirred up issues, and made the book worth reading. There were also parts where it just shocked you! I was thinking that this book was turning into a reality TV show with the drama!
I felt like if I actually did finish a Maximum Ride novel, I would feel like this book really resembled it.
The ending was okay, with questions unanswered. I guess it is good that this is a series, but at the same time, I won't be dying to read it.
Overall, this book was okay. I would've gave it a three fires but there were some serious mind blowing moments near the 2/3 of the book that bumped the book up to a four fires. If you would like to see where exactly those moments happened, read my Goodreads status for this book.