(Dropped the series title because otherwise the post titles would be waaaay too long.)
It’s been a while, but now I’m back with a spork of the third Maximum Ride book, titled… well, you can look up there. I don’t feel like typing it out again. Let’s jump right in, shall we?
Prologue: No More Mistakes!
We start the book in the “Itexicon American Headquarters” in Florida, where–actually, let me just show you.
“We have meticulously crafted the skeleton of our new world,” the Director proclaimed from the large TV screen in the conference room. “Parts of this skeleton are scattered across the globe. Now the time has come to connect those parts, to become one! And, as one, we will commence our Re-Evolution!” (pg 3)
So. Yeah. Looks like not much has changed on the writing quality front.
Jeb Batchelder and a guy named Roland ter Borcht are in the conference room in question, and the Director goes on to order Jeb to get the flock killed by the next day. Ooh, drama!
Part 1: In Search of Hot Chocolate-Chip Cookies
So, it seems the flock have finally decided that flying around is a no-no, though I don’t understand why, and are now in a van. I mean, they never had any problems before with flying, and obviously the van they’re driving in is WAY slower than their unrealistic flight capacities. Then there’s the fact that Max is a fourteen-year-old with barely any driving experience, which would raise her conspicuousness by about 100.
Logic fail already. Goody.
The rest of the chapter is just infodumping, both on what we already know and a little bit that we don’t: the flock are “heading west” for no reason in particular.
More recapping (this time even noted as such). Also:
But if the above whipped your imagination into a frenzy, here’s something even more interesting: Fang started a blog (http:maximumride.blogspot.com) (pg 11)
This blog actually exists. I don’t recommend a visit.
But let’s look at this in-universe blog. What is its point? According to the book, Fang is blogging what happens to them… so who can see it? Who’s going to stumble upon a random blog and go, “oh hey, this blog says these kids have wings! Obviously this is real!”?
We “acquired” a wicked-cool laptop when we escaped from the Itex headquarters, and get this–it has permanent satellite linkup, so we’re always online. And because Itex is a world-class, top-secret, paranoid techfest, the linkup has constantly changing codes and passkeys–its signal is completely untraceable. (pg 11)
Okay. Let’s take this one piece at a time.
First, no you didn’t. Nabbing a laptop on the way out was noticeably absent in the previous book. In other words, JPatterson has so little idea what he’s doing that he had to go “nope, that thing that happened in the last book? Another thing happened, too!”
Second, what? What is the use of a computer like that in a stationary company headquarters? From whom would they possibly need to be hidden? Why would the flock have grabbed this on the way out, when they were surrounded by bad guys and left immediately after an explosion through its hole?
In conclusion: This is not how you write, JPatterson.
The flock ditch the van and continue traveling via wings.
Read: JPatterson realized he was being stupid and didn’t bother to edit. (I like to imagine that he writes these books over the course of a week, then has a computer fix its spelling before sending it off to the publishers. It’s the only reason the books could be this bad.)
The flock are now in Texas, and have miraculously ended up near Dallas. They head to some trees and make camp for the night.
“I keep putting two and two together and coming up with thirty-seven,” I said. “We have the School, the Institute, Itex… us, Erasers, Jeb, Anne Walker, the other experiments we saw in New York. But what’s the bigger picture? How does it all fit together?” (pg 14)
The answer is, it doesn’t.
I never would have admitted not knowing to the younger kids. Kids need leaders, need to know someone’s in charge. (pg 14)
I’m so glad you decided to study in child psychology while you were up in the mountains, Max. Otherwise you might actually do something reasonable for a person in your situation.
Yeah, you heard me right. Angel “overheard people thinking.” Another clue that we’re no ordinary cast of characters. Angel doesn’t just read minds; sometimes she can actually control them too. (pg 14)
Max really does the whole “yeah, the words I just wrote and presumably edited and sent to the publisher were not, in fact, some sort of ridiculously elaborate typo; I actually meant that and let me explain now!” thing WAY too much, especially in this book so far. If she could just explain things like a normal person, it would be much obliged.
So, that’s three quotes on one page. Great pace we’ve got here!
All of a sudden we’re with Fang’s perspective, even though Max is still there.
You know, just going into third person in a first person book for no discernible reason. No big deal.
Anyway, it’s morning and
Fang looked down at the screen he’d flipped off when Max had leaned closer. He thumbed the trackball, and the screen glowed to life. (pg 17)
Okay, three things:
One, Fang turned the screen off on a laptop without closing it? Who does that? Heck, would that even be possible with most laptops?
Second, the flock didn’t just take a laptop, they took a mouse from Itex’s headquarters after an explosion? I mean, really?
Third, whaaat? A mechanical mouse? You’re telling me this super high-tech company uses a mechanical mouse for their uber-special laptop? How about no?
Fang’s blog is getting popular, too! It’s gone from twenty views to a thousand in the past three days, and guess what? This is a blog! I know about view counts! And you know what? In the ten months this blog has existed, we’ve gotten about 9,300 views, meaning an average of just over 900 views per month. And apparently Fang’s blog about flying bird kids has gotten 1000 views in three days?
Nudge and Angel had curled up close to each other in the crooks of wide live oak limbs. (pg 18)
Oh, and Fang has been getting an uber mysterious message that says one of the flock is a traitor. OOH SUSPENSE!
But you’ll have to wait for the next spork, because this part’s done!