Tuesday, November 1, 2011

My Review of Daniel X

Okay, I know I said I would stay away from the internet during November for NaNoWriMo, but I feel I have to give this book a review before I go on into isolation for the next month, just because it struck me so much. (Maybe I'm know what, shut up monkey.)

I just this morning finished a little diddy by the name of The Dangerous Days of Daniel X by James Patterson and Micheal Ledwidge (at the suggestion of my friend Emma), and I have to say, it was very poorly written. (I feel so mean writing this review already,but onward I go.) The story revolves around a fifteen year old named Daniel (he has no last name so he uses X). He's an alien hunter from another planet and he uses a list given to him by his dead parents to identify his next target along with his formidable powers to smoke them, ultimately working towards the goal of killing the alien that murdered his parents. The book centers on his hunt for number 6 on his list, who is running a drug cartel and a intergalactic slave trade on the side.

No obviously, for those of you who have read Maximum Ride, you expect a lot when you see James Patterson's name on something. If you want to keep the same super writer image of him, please, don't read this book. It will only bring you heart break.

There are a lot I could of things I could comment on this book, but I'll try to just stick to the basic things. I'll even be nice and start out with a good point of the book. 

Patterson's plot is sound, make no mistake of that. In theory, you would think that Daniel would be a character with a good amount of character depth, despite the use of the worn out Killed-My-Parents-So-I-Have-To-Avenge-Them bit, with a little I'll-Never-Fit-In-Anywhere on the side.

But Patterson does a very poor job of tapping into that character. I barely knew how he felt about losing his parents, being disconnected from his home planet and feeling like he was lacking in his identity, which in the sparse it shows he clearly does think about those things. Not only that, but Patterson gave him too much power, not enough struggle. Daniel has the power to create things like apartments and animals and even people, and often recreates his parents and his friends, so it's like he didn't lose his family in the first place, which eliminates the incentive to leave home to begin with. And yes, he could have used this as an opportunity to create a conflict of all his loved ones being fake, and he does a little bit towards the end, but not nearly enough to touch my heart. Bottom line, no conflict, no interest.

And let's not forget the over all writing style of the book. At most, a chapter would be five pages, 1.5 spaced and 14 point font. There would be little to no action, description, emotional analysis. Not only that but the dialogue was unrealistic, the characters even more so and he kept on using the same words and phrases over and over again.

After I finished reading this, I felt I had jinxed myself in the face of the up and coming month. Why oh why did I pick up this book and read it when I had such an ginormous and difficult task ahead of me, I don't know. But at least I got my hands on White Cat by Holly Black to quickly remedy the situation.

All the Best, So long for a month!

Becca :3

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