Review Blog

Apr 10 2013

Black Mountain by Greig Beck

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Macmillan, 2012. ISBN 978 1 7426 1086 3.
(Age: Middle-upper secondary) Alex Hunter is an enhanced human through a secret program using a bacteria to create better soldiers with increased abilities. Here he wakes up not knowing who or where he is, but he is helped by a beautiful Israeli agent, who knows who and what he is. This leads to a series of high action adventures in which Alex's memory slowly begins to return. This is juxtaposed with a series of brutal deaths in the Appalachians' Black Mountain area. As Alex's memory returns so does a desire to return to his home in the Black Mountain, which leads to the ultimate confrontation with the creature responsible for the deaths. There is plenty of action and blood, so it is not for the squeamish. The chapters shift backwards and forwards between the various elements of the stories, but the author keeps control of the threads as the story moves along at a fast pace.
I think it would appeal to middle/upper secondary boys who enjoy Matthew Reilly or any other fast paced action adventures and are looking for something similar. The graphic descriptions of death would preclude younger readers.
David Rayner

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