Wednesday, September 24, 2014

I Am the Weapon

A review in 10 words (or thereabouts):  The Program taught him how to survive.  It taught him to suppress his emotions and get the job done. The Program taught him to be a killer.

Author: Allen Zadoff
Info: Little, Brown & CO, BYR, copyright 2013, 352 pages

Boy Nobody is the perennial new kid in school, the one few notice and nobody thinks much about. He shows up in a new high school, in a new town, under a new name, makes few friends and doesn't stay long. Just long enough for someone in his new friend's family to die -- of "natural causes." Mission accomplished, Boy Nobody disappears, and moves on to the next target. 

When his own parents died of not-so-natural causes at the age of eleven, Boy Nobody found himself under the control of The Program, a shadowy government organization that uses brainwashed kids as counter-espionage operatives. But somewhere, deep inside Boy Nobody, is somebody: the boy he once was, the boy who wants normal things (like a real home, his parents back), a boy who wants out. And he just might want those things badly enough to sabotage The Program's next mission.

~Goodreads Description

So Boy Nobody: I Am the Weapon is a teen Jason Bourne. His name and mark is always changing, but this teen has been recruited as an assassin.  All is well...until it's not.  Until there's a mark he can not kill.  Until he has questions.

Zadoff does an excellent job at the spy stuff.  There are cool apps, code communications, and intense chase scenes that keep the reader interested and on their toes.  While the main character has been brainwashed into believing that what he does is a job, he begins to question The Program, his actions, and the memories he has suppressed creating a nice conflict.  There's a bit of angst, which got a little tiresome after awhile, but in the end it was understandable for a teen boy who's being forced to kill people.

The tension builds nicely and the questions unanswered keep the reader coming back for more.  I loved the Bourne movies, so this was right up my ally.  It would have been great if there had been a little humor like Gross Pointe Blank, but I suppose it just wasn't that kind of story :) And Boy Nobody is definitely no John Cusack.  Sigh.  John Cusack.  Getting off point.

A little more action and a little less moaning in book two would be appreciated.  Fingers crossed I'll tackle I Am the Mission by the end of the year.  Oh kryptonite.

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