Monday, February 8, 2016

Max Cassidy: Escape From Shadow Island by Paul Adam

I found this on a recommended summer reading list, and I gave it a rating of four out of five. Max is the son of a world-famous escape artist, and he's following in his father's footsteps. However, two years earlier, his father turned up missing in Santo Domingo, and his mother was convicted of his murder. A mysterious man tells Max that his father is still alive, but the man turns up dead before Max can get more details. Max heads to Santo Domingo to find information about his father's disappearance, but the local police are corrupt and try to force him back to England. Max figures out that the secrets he needs must be found on Shadow Island, and he's not going to leave until he finds some answers.

This plot is similar to the Alex Rider and Young James Bond books. Max doesn't have any super powers or fancy inventions, but he has the escape skills of his father. I enjoyed how he used these skills to escape from the corrupt police force and other dangerous characters. The action moved along nicely, and the author did a nice job of making the conflict grow as Max got closer to the truth. He was threatened, arrested, imprisoned, and nearly died while trying to escape. You should be prepared to read a sequel to this book, because Max is left with more searching to do after the story's resolution.

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