Monday, March 11, 2013

Jack: Secret Histories

Jack: Secret Histories
Today's post is on 'Jack: Secret Histories' by F. Paul Wilson. It is 304 pages including a reading order for all his books at the end. It is published by TOR. The cover has two boys in silhouette with a bone arm out reached to them. It also has the opening line of the book on the cover which is 'They discovered the body on a rainy afternoon...'. The intended reader is young men but it is part of Wilson's Secret History of the World Series so anyone who likes/reads that will get something out of this book. There is some language, as the two of the main characters are fourteen year old boys but nothing really, there is no sex, and no gore. Some fighting but nothing too extreme. There Be Spoilers Ahead.

From the back of the book- Ever come across a situation that simply wasn't right- where someone was getting the dirty end of the stick and you wished you could make things right but didn't know how? Fourteen-year-old Jack knows how, Or, rather, he's learning how. He's discovering that he has a knack for fixing things. Not bikes or toys or appliances- situations...
Here's how it all starts: Jack and his best friends, Weezy and Eddie, discover a rotting corpse- the victim of ritual murder- in the fabled New Jersey Pine Barrens. Beside the body is an ancient artifact carved with strange designs. What is its secret? What is the secret of the corpse? What other mysteries  hide in the dark, timeless Pine Barrens? And who doesn't want them revealed?
Jack's town, the surrounding Barrens, his friends, even Jack himself... they all have.. secret histories.

Review- This is a good strong YA. I enjoyed reading it, it was a very quick read. Wilson does not change his writing style just because he is writing a YA book and I think that is very good. It helps this book fit into the the larger world of his Secret History nicely. Also when the young adults grow into just regular adults they will have a author ready for them to continue reading. This is Wilson's first YA book so there are some things that just do not quite fit like that Jack is more emotionally  mature that a normal fourteen-year-old would be. He is very aware of his place in the world and of others around him. He is honest but the reader can see where Jack is going to be when he becomes an adult. There is nothing in this book that should stop anyone from reading this. The murders do not happen on camera, the body is not described so the reader can full in details themselves mostly. The language is age appropriate. The very mild supernatural elements are just interesting and not scary at all. All in all I think that Wilson played it safe with this book.

I give this book Four stars out of Five. I get nothing for my review and I borrowed this book from my local library.