by Joe Shine
Ren Sharpe is living a normal life. She just started high school and she’s working hard to fit in with the other kids. Then she gets kidnapped in the middle of the night and taken to a secret facility owned by F.A.T.E. that trains bodyguards. There’s a satellite that takes pictures fifty years in the future, and it took a picture of her gravestone, indicating she only lived to be fourteen, so they took her for their program. They also know who is important in fifty years, and it’s their job to protect the world changers. This is an interesting idea, but I didn’t understand why it was necessary. If they know the future, wouldn’t they know the world changers aren’t going to be dead?
After four years of intense training, Ren is assigned to Gareth Young, a student at the University of Texas. She’s not allowed to actually contact him, but she does. After all, she’s a student there too, as cover - and all her grades are fixed, so she doesn’t actually have to do any of the work. They start falling in love, even though Ren still likes someone from her training and is keeping in touch with him.
This is where things start going downhill. People attack Gareth, and now Ren can use her training. I just have no idea why people attacked him. The explanations were so full of conspiracy theories that I have no idea what was going on for pretty much the second half of the book. Ren runs around with Gareth, other people run after them, people from F.A.T.E. show up, and that’s about what I understood. The underlying plot was lost on me.
Ren’s internal dialogue was a bit different. I didn’t find it particularly better or worse than the standard, just kind of different. It worked well with her character, a carefree, think-of-me-what-you-will sort.
This is a 2.7. The premise, while interesting, did raise some questions that weren’t addressed at all. If I were kidnapped and forced to be a bodyguard, I would at least wonder why they didn’t bother try to save me if they knew I was going to die. I also didn’t really like Ren’s relationship with Gareth, and I didn’t like Gareth that much. And there was that whole second half that was just confusing. This is like chewing gum. At first, there’s some flavor and enough to keep it interesting, but then the flavor goes away and you’re left wondering why you’re chewing a tasteless chewy thing and making your jaw tired.