Monday, April 18, 2011

Review - Wild Child

Mike Wells
When his best friend Brie is hit by a speedboat while swimming in the lake, Kyle's sure she's dead. There's no way to survive a blow like that. But when Brie reemergest from the water a few minutes later, she's strangely energetic and her wounds are already closing up. Brie has found a green water at the bottom of the lake that seems to have healing powers. Soon, Kyle and Brie are on the run from government officials who want their discovery -- to make things worse, Brie's health is fading fast the longer she stays away from the green water.

This book is straight-up sci fi; the story starts up right away with a minimum of backstory. Kyle and Brie aren't the most compelling characters by themselves, but their relationship is interesting enough to pull me into the story and their bond does a good job of grounding what is an incredibly unbelievable story. Unlike most scifi I've read, this one takes place in our world and as impossible as it is to believe this "green water" heals and gives the ability to breathe underwater, I accept this part of the story wholeheartedly because that's how Kyle reacts.

That said, though I bought into the premise of the green water, this story still leaves a lot of questions unanswered. Not only are we left to wonder just what, exactly, the green water actually is, but also: who are these government agents? Why is Kyle so sure they're bad? Why do they want the green water so badly? This is a super-short novel and because of that there are certain aspects -- like Kyle's relationship with his dad -- that aren't fully developed. In most cases, this is fine; the story is focused exclusively on Kyle, Brie, and the mysterious green water that Brie is dying without.

For me, this biggest issue with this book is the sudden, bizarre ending. I had to read it a few times just to be sure what I thought happened actually happened. This ending seems to come out of nowhere and apropos of nothing, but that's not entirely a bad thing. For a novel, it's definitely a head-scratcher, but this entire book reads less like a novel and more like a very long short story, where unresolved questions and sudden endings are more common. And for that it works well.
This book is published as an eBook for both the Kindle and the Nook. 

*ebook received from author

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