I would like to get something straight about these Maximum Ride novels: These are for kids. The writing is purely juvenile, and though it definitely isn’t the best, it’s the type that should appeal to a middle schooler and how they talk. Not many talk like the narrator, I’m sure, but maybe James Patterson is showing this voice of Max to show her personality. And of course—these aren’t regular kids, anyhow. They haven’t gotten any sort of education—except in book 2—and even then it wasn’t much.
So my conclusion: These books are purely for fun.
Let’s cut some slack.
Okay, I admit—the first three books were definitely the best. The Final Warning just introduced us a new problem about Max trying to save global warming and, let’s face it, it seems that JP did it to just provide some sort of dilemma for Max and her group to solve. In book 5, MAX, Max’s adventures continue with the flock as they go to Hawaii—another global warming adventure, piled on top of her ‘saving the world’ duty. Romantic tensions arise between Max and Fang—a possible romantic relationship?—but, of course, protagonist keeps pushing Fang away. Damn it, damn it, damn it
Let’s see … book 6. FANG. Angel reveals a prophecy: Fang will be the first to die. Lots of conflict going on—with the flock, and the audience itself. Including moi. And, oh look! Max has an actual soulmate
—Dylan. Love triangle. Woopdedo. Really, it’s obvious it’s Fax. It will always
be Fax. I don’t care how Nevermore ends—IT WILL END IN FAX.
And then, we’re at our very climatic, stupidest, heartbreaking moment at the end of FANG—Fang leaves.
I wallowed in self-pity for almost a week because of that.
Now, we’re onto ANGEL.
It was obvious, like others have said, that after The Final Warning, the series started to go a bit downhill. TFW was definitely not the best Patterson could do, especially considering the page amount. MAX seemed to get better, and then Patterson wow’ed us with FANG. ANGEL is sort of like that.
In ANGEL, yes, we meet Fang again. But he’s recruiting—making a flock of his own. The work together in the end to defeat their biggest enemy yet—and yes, this enemy is really big—The Doomsday group. Sound eerie? It is.
Their objective is to kill all human beings within a matter of five days (since the start of the book; obviously, the plan isn’t fulfilled, because Patterson only showed us three out of the five.)
Now, imagine if you were in Max’s world, piled with this big responsibility of stopping the Doomsday Group, becoming the leader of a new batch of scientifically experimented mutants called the Gen 77, making sure to survive the world apocalypse, mating with Dylan to bring babies to carry on your legacy, all the while sorting out your feelings about your soulmate (which is, obviously Fang. I will not take no for an answer.)
Fuck. I feel sorry for Max.
Here are some of the things I didn’t like about ANGEL:1) New characters.
2) Fang liking Maya (Max II).
When Fang brings his new gang into the picture, we are faced with other mutant kids. I don’t like this. It’s always been Gazzy, Iggy, Max, Angel, Fang, and Max, with the occasional Dr. Martinez and Ella and Jeb and other whatnots. I don’t like how Patterson is introducing characters from the second to last book. I’ve always liked it to be centered around the flock—the flock that we all love. It may be my personal opinion here, but I really didn’t like it.
3) Not a lot of Iggy, Gazzy, or Nudge.
Yeah, you read that? All you hardcore Fax fans, I think we may need some help. I was seriously pissed when we got those little insight on Fang’s feelings, and he kept thinking, “Oh, Maya is really unique. She’s more vulnerable. I think I like her more …”
I didn’t even think of the possibility of that. Fang cannot like anyone other than Max. End of discussion. I kept telling myself in the end that because he was really torn up over leaving Max and the flock, he’s getting his feelings mixed up, since, of course, Maya looks like the complete version of Max.
4) Not a lot of fighting scenes.
If you remember from the first three books, Nudge is the really talkative type. She talksandtalksandtalks. Gazzy loves bombs and stuff. Iggy’s really … uh, the same. We don’t get these characters in this book much. It’s all about Max and Dylan and Fang. Basically. Max is spending all her time with Dylan, kissing Dylan, arguing with Dylan, etc. She’s thinking about Fang—how she loves him but likes Dylan, too. It’s just—urgh! I want the flock. I want to see more of the rest of the characters.
Oh my. Yup. All those kickass fighting scenes we’ve seen in the past books? Not really here. I mean, of course, there are the few scenes with battles, and it gets really heated up towards the end, but there isn’t many fighting. I miss the times with the Erasers. I loved when Max and the other were fugitives, not cell phone carriers. cough cough Max cough
Things I liked
about ANGEL: 1) Jealoussyyyy.
2) Neverending action!
OH YEAH BABY. The only reason I’m liking Dylan+Max together is because it is making Fang jealous. This is good. Really good. I found myself squealing.
Dylan is pretty cute, though. I’m not rooting for him, and I feel sorry for him when he says to Max, “I’m made for you. I’m only here for you.” Because I’m a diehard Fax fan, I can’t help but think what about Dylan? He’ll be completely left alone. I love Dylan and Maya—hehe, there’s always that pair that could end up together!—as characters, but I do not want them to end up with the main characters. Absolute no no. Remember, JP, if you’re reading this, 98% of your fans are Fax. The rest are whatever. MAKE 98% HAPPY, GODDAMNIT.
3) Max’s narrating.
How could we forget what we know MR for? The never ending action. The eternal suspense. I love this.
I’m probably the minority in this, but I love juvenile, sarcastic tones of writing. I haven’t come across much of them, but I still like it. It’s refreshing.
August 6th can’t come fast enough! I’m excited for NEVERMORE. Let’s just hope JP finishes up his series with a bang and MAKES SURE THAT MAX ENDS UP WITH FANG.
My pairings for this series:
Max + Fang
Maya + Dylan
Iggy + Ella
Total + Avila (or whatever the other dog was in TFW)