I am Number Four by Pittacus Lore
Nine of us came here. We look like you. We
talk like you. We live among you. But we are not you. We can do things you dream
of doing. We have powers you dream of having. We are stronger and faster than
anything you have ever seen. We are the superheroes you worship in movies and
comic books—but we are real.
Our plan was to grow, and train, and become
strong, and become one, and fight them. But they found us and started hunting us
first. Now all of us are running. Spending our lives in shadows, in places where
no one would look, blending in. we have lived among you without you knowing.
But they know.
They caught Number One in Malaysia.
Two in England.
And Number Three in Kenya.
They killed them all.
I am Number Four.
I am next.
In I AM NUMBER FOUR there are two alien races that are presented, the Loriens and the Mogodorians. In the past when in danger of destroying their planet, the Lorien race changed their ways and became some sort Supermen. The Mogadorians did not, and in essence they turned into walking diseases. When their home planet of Lorien was invaded by the evil Mogadarians, intent on raping the planet of all its natural resources, nine children are shipped off to Earth for safe refuge. Human in appearance, these children are to stay on earth until their superpowers develop so they could then return to Lorien to restore the planet. But the Mogadarians have pursued them to earth to render the Lorien race extinct (the reason for this I am still not convinced of). A special charm is placed upon the nine chosen youths that keeps them relatively safe because they must be killed in numerical order, hence the title character (Number Four) is the fourth on the Mogadarians’ hit list. Each child has a Sapien; an elder that will protect them and guide them as they mature into their prospective super powers. The nine children and their elders' separate, fleeing to various parts of Earth and it’s only when a burning scar appears on their bodies that they know one of their species has been killed.
Number Four has spent his life on Earth with his older Sapien Henri, a father-like figure who loves "John" as his own. These two beings are constantly on the move assuming different alias' as they go from town to town staying several steps ahead of their alien assassins. The death of Number Three prompts a choice move to Paradise, Ohio, a small town that is anything but paradise. Less than twenty-four hours of being there John Smith aka Number Four, finds himself on the bottom of the crap list for the town bully, "in love" with his ex-girlfriend and his powers develop at the worst time possible. Can things get any worse? Why yes they can, and there lie the predictability of this story.
I am not a Sci-Fi fan in the least. Ask anyone I know and they will tell you how much I will despise anything alien in nature because it just irritates me. So, it was with a hesitant decision for which I began reading I AM NUMBER FOUR and was pleasantly surprised on how much I enjoyed it. I cannot put my finger on why? but as I read it I laughed, cried and became absorbed in it. I liked the premise of this story along with it's cast of memorable characters despite it being a tad predictable. That predictability is what gives this book a lower rating, because I believe that this story could have been something truly amazing it if kept me on the edge instead of having me roll my eyes at it because it did not surprise me. With the movie coming up in a few months I predict that many will find interest in this book and will enjoy it but I wonder what true Sci-Fi fans think of it.
On a side note Pittacus Lore is the collective alias of James Frey and rookie author Jobie Hughes. So now I am wondering who is it that signed my copy from BEA? just curious, but it is a great marketing ploy.