Finally...a paranormal book with bite that boys will like! No sappy romantic vampires or longing for unrequited love here, just a rollicking thrill-ride that will have both boys and girls turning pages long into the dark and stormy night.
The novel starts off in a typical paranormal fashion--a teenager who is a little different finds out what he truly is, what his destiny is, and how he can never be a normal teen...but then... just when the reader thinks the book will continue in paranormal fashion, it takes a sharp left turn into an action/adventure/espionage thriller.
Lucas King is tired of moving around. He and his father have moved countless times in the past couple of years and Lucas has had it. Why can't they just stay in one place? Why can't they put down roots? He is starting to get comfortable at RHS and has a good friend Renzo and an "almost" girlfriend Meena, but something is just not right. There's the sunglass mafia that seem to be following him around, spying on him. They are Russian-born kids in town since their fathers work at one of the multi-national firms. There's something weird about them; Lucas can sense it.
Then Lucas's father disappears. Before he does, he calls Lucas and tells him through code words--not to go home, EVER, and that he has been taken by someone--an enemy, and to go to their secret message site for more insturctions. Lucas knows the code, he knows how to track, how to hide, how to live off the land, hand-to-hand combat, some martial arts and covert techniques. You see, Lucas has been trained to become what he must: a shadow-walker or werewolf.
The sunglass mafia grabs his friend Renzo to convince Luke to work with them. They are after the people who kidnapped Luke's father, too. Their must destroy the factory that is attempting to use "special" people like themselves to develop a super-soldier. Vampires and wolves will have to work together in order to survive.
Lucas is a cool wolf--way cooler than the typical howl-at-the-moon werewolf. Author Joseph Bruchac developed the wolves in Wolf Mark to be more human than wolf. They are capable of speech and can use their paws--which look and function like human hands. They are not full of bloodlust but capable of human thought and planning.
I loved this paranormal turned action-packed adventure novel. This one is sure to please fans of paranormal and adventure novels. Wolf Mark will have wide appeal among both male and female readers. Bruchac drew on his Abenaki culture and Slavic roots to develop his characters. This novel is unique enough that I think Hollywood may soon be knocking on Bruchac's door!
Ages 13 and up
Highly, highly recommended grades 7-up. No sex, no language. Some violence.
Reviewed by: Pamela Thompson, MLIS, LIbrary Media Specialist, Texas, USA
Visit Pamela's ya novels blog at http://booksbypamelathompson.blogspot.com/