Sunday, September 22, 2013

I Am Number Four Series by Pittacus Lore

image from LibraryThing
This is another "teenagers out to save the world" series, except they are aliens and they are trying to fight off a race of aliens (Mogadorians) who have destroyed their planet and are not set to take over earth.  Sound a bit odd?  It is  - but it is also an interesting read.

Number Four is the first Lorian to tell the story.  He has been on the run his entire life with his Cepan (guide) moving him from town to town across the US. Four (John is his human name) hides in plain sight in small towns until life there becomes compromised in some way and then they move on. They end up in Paradise for longer than usual and it is there that Henri (the Cepan) begins to tell John what his life is really all about - how he was sent from Loric as the planet was consumed with 9 other children and the legacies of Lorian.  These legacies are special talents that grow as the children mature and will be used to defend themselves and remake Loric in the future.
image from LibraryThing

Following a fiery explosion and the heart-breaking death of Henri, Four meets the next of his group, Six.  She is completely different from Four - confident and in control of her legacies in a way he only wishes.  Four, Six and Sam, a friend from Paradise, escape Paradise and hit the road.  They find an abandoned house and heal and train and grow their abilities.

But, the unknown Mogadorians and Sam's missing father haunt them.  As do the scars burned in their legs. Each time one of the original Garde is caught and killed by the Mogadorians, a scar is seared into their legs.

The story shifts a bit in the next book and more of the Garde are introduced - the story telling moves between the characters until they all end up in the penthouse apartment of Six at the top of the John Hancock building in Chicago.  As the Garde gather and train and learn from one another more and more of the story comes out.  It is their responsibility to carry on their legacy.  But, at what cost?  They are after all only children.  All of them have lost their Cepan's and some have lost the chests of their Loric tools. But the end of this book the group is:  Four, Six, Eight, Nine and Ten plus Sarah (Four's girlfriend) and Sam his friend.
image from LibraryThing

The story shifts as Five joins the Garde.  He adds a layer of darkness and tension.  Sam also is able to reunite with his Father who disappeared long ago - he was one of the Greeters who welcomed the Lorian spaceship to earth.  I found this book harder to understand. The storytelling switches between characters - each using the first person. I was sometimes a bit confused by who was talking.  The font is different for each - but not drastically.  I found it distracting from the storyline.

I like parts of these - but get so tired of the teenage angst that is layered in these stories.  They remind me of the Series of Unfortunate Events in that Pittacus Lore is also a character in the story.  He is the one that Sam's father met on earth - but how can that be since only the children made it to the planet.  Each book leaves unanswered questions.  I am not sure how dedicated I am to stick with these though. It would be much easier to just wait and read them all at once...

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