Traditional or self-published: Traditional
Rating: Loved (Hated-Disliked-Okay-Liked-Loved)
My god. This book! I'm SO SO SO glad I pushed through the earlier not so good books to reach these ghostwritten ones. This one was outstanding. Amazing!
These kids started this fight when they were thirteen. The end of the book takes place three years later. We're in the middle of the series, so maybe they're 14-15-ish at this point. And in this book? For the first time, they tortured an enemy. It killed them inside to do so, but they did it.
And that's not the worst thing they did.
Jake, the leader of the Animorphs, has an older brother named Tom. Tom has a Yeerk (the alien brain slug enemy) in his head. Those aliens need to return to a place once every three days to feed. In this book, their family is taking a trip that would last longer than three days, thus Tom had to figure out a way to not go, or he would die.
Jake had to kill his brother. His brother, who would want to kill him if he knew that Jake was an Animorph. His brother, who has an alien in his head that couldn't care less about killing random humans. So the whole book was these two boys, living together under the same roof, family, playing out this wargame of waiting and watching, intending to kill each other. Oh and Tom was going to kill the father too (to prevent the alien in his head from dying). /end spoiler
I know I keep saying this, but the whole book was so amazingly dark and wonderful and just soul-crushing for these kids. Unlike previous books, this one had no stupid stuff at all, nothing I had to overlook or roll my eyes at.
Marco (the joker character of the group) has become my favorite character. He's so cold and ruthless, which is just so odd in such a young kid. But they've all been through so much...
“People don’t understand the word ruthless. They think it means ‘mean.’ It’s not about being mean. It’s about seeing the bright, clear line that leads from A to B. The line that goes from motive to means. Beginning to end. It’s about seeing that bright, clear line and not caring about anything but the beautiful fact that you can see the solution. Not caring about anything else but the perfection of it.” --Marco