I don't count myself as a huge fan of Eoin Colfer's writing - I'm still only three books into his Artemis Fowl series, which is okay enough but hasn't got me overly excited.
However, a vivid imagination is one thing no one can say Colfer lacks, and The Reluctant Assassin
, the first in his new YA series, is no exception. It's imaginative, there's plenty of action and adventure, the plot twists are varied and numerous (and not all of them predictable), and overall, it's exciting and enjoyable. The ending in particular got me curious enough that I will probably also want to read the next book in this series.
The characters... well, now this is where the book fell flat for me. I didn't really connect with either Riley or Chevie, in spite of the author's attempts to give them both their own tragic back stories and some plucky courage and special skills. I just... didn't care much.
On the other hand (and this is the sole reason I gave the book four stars, not three), Garrick was wonderful. I'm not entirely sure I was supposed to root for and identify with and be intrigued by the villain, and semi-hope he'd get rid of the irritating kid protagonists, but I did, and he was really the best thing about the book.* ARC of this book was provided by the publisher through NetGalley. Thanks!