Review Detail

Young Adult Fiction 183
Teen Seeking Purpose in Life
Overall rating 
 
3.3
Plot 
 
3.0
Characters 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
3.0
Luc Ponti comes from a strong Italian family, and his father (an NCAA point guard, Princeton grad, Special Forces and lieutenant) is especially high powered. He comes to every one of Luc’s basketball games for his school, and expects Luc to do well. When Luc is badly injured when fouled by an opposing player, he wakes up in the hospital, fighting a burst appendix and an infection. He also realizes that he has strange superpowers that he initially thinks are hallucinations. His friend Bella, whose parents are from Colombia, is instrumental in helping him get through his illness and helps him with other issues, like dealing with his parents’ marital woes. He is eventually approached by the CIA, who want him to use his powers to help them. Because he would rather concentrate on getting into college to study engineering while furthering his basketball career, he’s less than thrilled about this turn of events. Meeting Thay, who has trained as a monk, helps him put some things into perspective while he learns to deal with his powers. When he meets two other teens who have developed powers after traumas of their own, will he be able to work with them?
Good Points
There’s plenty of action, science, and adventure in this book, with a heaping helping of philosophy as well. It reminded me a bit of Kincaid’s Insignia series, Lu’s Legend books, or Carroll’s Quantum Prophecy.

One thing that sets this book apart is Luc’s Sicilian ancestry. There is a lengthy author’s note at the beginning explaining Luc’s insistence on swearing in Italian, and there are footnotes with the meanings of all of his colorful outbursts, as well as a glossary of the terms in the back. This, along with the philosophical nature of much of the story, makes this best suited for a high school audience.

Readers who want their explosions combined with Eastern philosophy, Italian cuisine, and helicopter parents will enjoy Luc’s exploits as he journeys toward understanding what has happened to him, his greater purpose, and some level of enlightenment.
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