Tate and his father don’t exactly get along. As Tate sees it, his father has unreasonably high expectations for Tate to be the best—at everything. Tate finally learns what he’s being prepared for when he steals one of his dad’s odd tech inventions and mercenaries ambush the school, killing his father in the process and sending Tate on the run from aliens who look just like humans.All Tate knows–like how to make weapons out of oranges and lighter fluid–may not be enough to save him as he’s plunged into a secret inter-species conflict that’s been going on for centuries. Aided only by his girlfriend and his estranged mother, with powerful enemies closing in on all sides, Tate races to puzzle out the secret behind his father’s invention and why so many are willing to kill for it.
A riveting, fast-paced adventure, Scan is a clever alien thriller with muscle and heart.
Thank you to Sami of JKS Communications and Putnam Juvenile for the review copy! This in no way affected my views of the novel.
OH FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THINGS HOLY, let me just breathe for a second here. Whew. That was a thrilling ride and I haven’t caught up my breath just yet. I read this book in one sitting because there’s no other way to read it but all at once, foregoing sleep and eating. Ever since I heard about Scan back in June of 2013, I was so excited for it. I remember marking it as to-read on Goodreads and hounding everyone I know so I can read it in advance. And holy smokes, it did not disappoint. It was awesome beyond my expectations. Now, let me tell you why.
1. Scan is like ALEX RIDER. Is anyone familiar (or as in love as me) with Anthony Hororwitz’ Alex Rider series? Or maybe watched the film Stormbreaker? If you know me, I love that series. So who the heck is Alex Rider? Alex Rider is this teenager who didn’t know that his uncle was training him to be a spy. So he’s so adept in different kinds of martial arts and he knows and speaks so many languages. When his uncle dies, he then learns the truth and succeeds his uncle. The same can be said about Tate Archer, only he and his dad are way cooler. First, Tate’s dad has a laboratory where he researches and invents. Second, Tate is a more conflicted and dimensional character than Alex Rider. Right from the start, you can feel the tension, resentment and under all of it, the respect and awe, that he feels for his detached father. All his father says is for him to train for the family responsibility he doesn’t even know what but then all comes crashing down and he learns too many too fast when his father dies. *cue my heart being all squished from all sides*
2. Scan is like Alex Rider with ALIENS. GUYS. ALIENS. Everything is better with them. What’s better than Alex Rider? Alex Rider with aliens. Tate Archer totally kicks Alex Rider’s ass to the curb and I LOVE IT. We get to unravel bits and pieces on the history of how the H2 (the aliens) arrived. We get to read firsthand all the conflict the presence of two species who both think they are superior than the other. Oh the good stuff. Who’s right? Who can Tate trust? Can he even trust his own mother? His girlfriend? OH BY JOVE, PLEASE, I LOVE ALL THE QUESTIONS.
3. Scan is like Alex Rider with aliens with SO MUCH ACTION. Have I said that Tate Archer can pretty much make explosives out of nothing? Well, not nothing, but household materials. He’s such a chemistry geek and I turned giddy every time he spouts off some chemical compound. Sexy. I like a guy talking shop. Haha! But seriously, discount the fact that I’m a science nerd, Tate Archer just owns it. He’s a bit arrogant but totally whipped by his girlfriend, Christina. He’s just an amazing character and you want to get to know him and read all about his adventures. But getting right to the action. The first chapter involved a jiu-jitsu match. Adrenaline and action junkies will love all the chase scenes, the negotiations and all that make James Bond so enjoyable in this novel. Not only is Tate great at martial arts and all types of fighting, he’s smart and strategical. But he’s also driven by his emotions, which makes relating to him and rooting for him so darn easy.
4. Scan is like Alex Rider with aliens with so much action with THAT GODDAMN CLIFFHANGER. I know some of you who have read the book are groaning because of that cliffhanger and I know lots of people hate cliffhangers. But guys, this is the best kind of cliffhanger. It’s the kind which will make you anticipate and counting down the days until Burn is out next year. That ending made me WHAT THE HECK WHY IS THIS ENDING NOW WHEN IS BURN COMING OUT IT DOESN’T EVEN HAVE A COVER I WILL SHRIVEL UP WAITING FOR IT. And maybe quite a few choice words to express my want, my NEED, for more. It’s just what this book will do to you.
With gut-churning action and tension, palpable and conflicting dilemmas, and a dimensional ensemble of characters, Scan will have you wishing you can be Tate’s sidekick as he launches fireballs made up of orange to his enemies. I highly recommend it to action lovers and I think even reluctant readers might start loving reading if they get to read this. Scan is one hell of a ride!