Wednesday, February 23, 2011

The Dangerous Days of Daniel X Review

The Dangerous Days of Daniel X by James Patterson

( product description)
The greatest superpower of all isn't to be part spider, part man, or to cast magic spells--the greatest power is the power to create.
Daniel X has that power.

Daniel's secret abilities -- like being able to manipulate objects and animals with his mind or to recreate himself in any shape he chooses -- have helped him survive. But Daniel doesn't have a normal life. He is the protector of the earth, the Alien Hunter, with a mission beyond what anyone's imagining.

From the day that his parents were brutally murdered before of his very eyes, Daniel has used his unique gifts to hunt down their assassin. Finally, with the help of The List, bequeathed to him in his parents' dying breath, he is closing in on the killer.

Now, on his own, he vows to take on his father's mission--and to take vengeance in the process.

This is geared toward a young audience, even younger than I had been expecting. There is a very young hero and some of it is just goofy and corny. There is nothing wrong with goofy or corny but it was put beside these frightening scenes and times that are fraught with unspeakable danger and they just didn’t sit well together. They never really blended into one narrative tone. When the hero goes after what are supposed to be the top ten listed bad guys in the universe and they start using words like pukemeister it is hard to take any of it seriously or to have any real sense of danger even though worlds are at risk and very bad things are happening. And I found the juxtaposition of the two confusing. And there were points in the story that I had issues with. At the beginning of the story Daniel says he thinks he is an alien and then later he is telling us facts about his home planet, although some attempt is made to explain how he gets around living all by himself where the money comes from is never mentioned, and it seemed at times that a new power would pop up just at the time he needed it. There was just too much to take on faith and it asked you to stretch your credulity too far. There is some light hearted fun to the book if you don’t look too hard or expect too much in the way of tight plotting and I did like some of the dialog, both between the characters and when Daniel is talking to the reader. He did sound very much like a teenage boy. But I was disappointed with the book over all. I’m sure there is an audience for this book, probably young children, mostly boys, but it is not the kind of book that spans all age groups.

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