First, a confession: I don’t know James Patterson’s Maximum Ride series of Young Adult novels; also, I’m not a young adult and I don’t read that particular genre in general anyway. So with me having no clue what this series was about to begin with, and being probably as far away from the target demographic they’re looking for, I’m probably the person least qualified to judge James Patterson’s Max Ride – Final Flight #1. However, since I do read comic books and on a regular basis, I’m willing to give it a fair shake and I apologise to any fans of the series if I get any details wrong.
Maximum “Max” Ride is a young woman who’s the de facto leader of a group of kids (or young adults, as I suppose the term is now) who have escaped from a government experimentation program. Since the kids have all been given wings and can fly, they’re called The Flock. Yet as they consider what their future should be now that they’ve avoided capture by a group called The Erasers, Max herself feels uneasy.
The voice in her head is telling her that she’ll be pivotal in saving the world, although the details are sketchy even to her. Wanting the voice gone, she and Fang head to town so that Max can have a computer chip removed from her arm, believing that it’ll make things better – only instead it makes things worse. Meanwhile, the other kids of The Flock – Gazzy, Angel, Nudge, Iggy and their dog Total – come under attack from an army of flying robots…
Since I’m a new reader, I had very little idea as to what was going on, how they got their abilities and what the relationship between the characters was, I was in the deep end here. There’s very little explained for those unfamiliar with the books, which is a huge drawback, and I honestly couldn’t understand why Max was the leader and main character of the series. However… credit where it’s due, the story moved along at a fair pace and the characters were interesting enough to keep my attention. Whether it’ll bring me back for more I can’t really say, but it still was an enjoyable read. Likewise, the art progressed the story nicely in a delicate, personal way.
While James Patterson’s Max Ride – Final Flight #1 didn’t blow me away, I felt that it certainly held its own against some of the big-name titles out there and it was a welcome change of pace. That being the case, I suspect it’ll mean even more to those who are already fans and odds are that they’ll enjoy it a lot.