Monday, August 12, 2013

Review of Richard Paul Evans's "Michael Vey: The Prisoner of Cell 25"

Quickie Review:

There is something wrong in a teenage superhero book when the most exciting scene involves two girls shopping. The characters in this book showed so little depth that a car insurance commercial has a better chance of pulling at my heartstrings. And there were enough instances of ‘ly’ verbs to give any editor a heart attack, which I assume is why the book reads like a rough draft. Putting this on a shelf in my garage.

Full Length Review:


Right away Michael Vey presents us with a teenage boy with a fat best friend, a popular cheerleader love interest and a bully with 2 cronies. But once the book gets over all that, it picks up. Michael discovers during a fight, that he possess the power of static electricity, just touching someone can light them up like a toaster to a hot tub. Taylor, the cheerleader, sees it and tells Michael that somehow she has powers too and they just happen to go to the same school in Idaho. Along with his friend, Ostin they form a club to uncover why they have these powers. Then, a mysterious group begins to stalk them.

Then there is a whole lot of filler and a thirty-page climax that excelled where every other scene failed.



Michael Vey is a teenager with Tourette syndrome, which causes the readers to yell obscenities at him. Excuse me, I meant to say that he has a few facial ticks. Couple this with static shock powers and leadership qualities, and you have a protagonist. The other characters get descriptions and tend to all be blonde for some reason. The villain enjoys making children torture each other and mess with famous people for fun. Nobody displays enough of a lasting impression that I had to see what would happen next.



Idaho -> California

The description in this book was average, but the constant adverbs such as “he said darkly” and their repeated use made my want to cut onion and glue them to my eyeballs. How does one say something darkly? Must you thrust your head into a shadow whenever you speak?


Writing Style:

This book is told in first person, past tense. The author enjoys short chapters, stuffing 48 separate ones Michael Vey. The author maintains control over Michael, while jumping over to Taylor in 3rd person every once in a while to see what she’s doing. Nothing is too difficult to follow, yet the pacing lacked at the start, but found ground somewhere along the way.



The book already has a sequel and is going for a third book. The series appears to have somewhat of a following. There are no talks of a movie as of yet. The author, Richard Paul Evans had a best seller on his hands 20 years ago, but this is his first dip into the YA market. He is well written, and maybe he can put some experience into his young adult writing, and stop underestimating what children deem entertaining.



Plot: 2/5

Characters: 2/5

            Setting/Description: 3/5

              Writing Style: 3/5

            Potential: 3/5

Score: 2.6/5

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