|image from Schuler Books’ website|
Okay, so by now you have all most likely read about James Frey, his publishing factory, and how I Am Number Four is a product of that factory. I may not like the way the book came to be, but to me, a good book is a good book and I wanted to give this book a fair chance. I’m extremely excited for the movie, as we all know :-D, so I also wanted to see what the movie had in store.
What I enjoyed the most was John as a narrator. We already know he is an alien and doesn’t belong in our world. But from the start of the book, I felt an instant connection with his character. All he wants to do is fit in, have a life, and be able to settle down in general. He’s tired of running, tired of hiding who he really is, and it’s exhausting. I think we can all relate to that in some form or another. John’s thoughts/views on things like friendship and school reminded me of Evie’s from Kiersten White’s Paranormalcy in the sense that they both didn’t know what it was like to be an average teen.
Having seen all the movie trailers (and geeking out at every single one of them), I knew there was going to be a good amount of action in the story. I was kind of worried there would be too much, but the action is laid out well and helps move the story along. At times the descriptions for the fight scenes were confusing for me, but I think this was mostly due to reading too fast, haha.
The romance between John and Sarah developed rather quickly, but was still enjoyable. Sarah seems like the kind of girl I would want to be friends with and I really liked the scenes she and John shared. The dialogue between the two of them, in regards to their feelings for one another, seemed cheesy to me, though. I think the writers were trying to make their love seem epic, but it didn’t quite work. Still, I thought they made a cute couple and I hope to see more of them as the series progresses.
In general, the writing wasn’t bad. Despite being choppy at parts, it was descriptive, engaging, and fairly simple in structure, making for an easy-to-follow read. Also, the way the real authors’ threw their names into the story was kind of charming, but mostly it was random.
James Frey aside, I really enjoyed reading I Am Number Four. Was it the best book I have ever read? No, but it was engaging, relatable, and suspenseful. Even if you don’t like how this book was produced, I urge you to give it a shot. It’s worth a read and I look forward to the sequel.