In the beginning there were nine.
We left when we were very young, almost too young to remember. Almost. And now...
Three are gone.
We are here to keep our race alive, which was almost entirely obliterated. We’re just trying to survive.
Six are left.
But we are hunted, and the hunters won’t stop until they’ve killed us all.
They caught Number One in Malaysia.
Number Two in England,
Number Three in Kenya.
I am Number Four,
I know that I am next.
Pre Read Thoughts
I’m choosing this because:
I saw this in my local WHSmith and got suckered in by that awesome sounding synopsis. It’s taken me absolutely ages to get to this book but now here I am and I’m looking forward to reading it. I’ve read mixed things and I always like to see where that’ll leave me sitting on the fence.
Judging a book by its cover:
There were a few different covers available in the shop but I went for one with sparkles on it... because I like sparkles. Does anyone have a problem with that? Well maybe Mr Pettyfer who was on one of the other covers but it’s tough because he just ain’t my type.
Pricing the (possible) awesomeness:
I personally got this as part of a “buy one get one for £1” offer. So I either paid the paperback RRP of £7.99 or £1.you however could go on the site of amazingness aka Amazon and pick up this for £5.99 in paperback or £3.99 on Kindle. I’d go for the kindle version that’s half the RRP of the paperback.
Post Read Thoughts
I didn’t really enjoy this book much. There were moments when I’d get into it and think “yes, it’s getting into its stride!” only to suddenly grow bored halfway through a chapter. I have some of the same issues with this that I had with another book I read recently and those issues are that the conversations felt unnatural as did being inside John’s head. I realise that he’s an alien but he’s spent the majority of his life on Earth so he should know how Americans speak, the same goes for the other character actually. Just because the proper grammar is ‘where is’ doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t write ‘where’s’ which sounds more natural. The idea of the book is solid and given to the right kind of author could be incredible but this author just didn’t do the idea justice. Maybe it worked better as a film. It’s on my to-rent list.
John – He’s Number Four and the main character. To be honest I thought he was bland and very much lacking in personality. Maybe it’s a trait of the people of Lorien, but even if it is, that’s really not good. How are you meant to engage with a character that bores you to tears?
Sarah – She’s the dear, sweet girl who falls in love with John after about five minutes. What I want to know is why? No girl in their right mind would go for someone who only cares about how you look but since Sarah has decided that her looks are all she has she’s willing to date our boring hero. Probably for the best since she’s also lacking in the personality department. Her hobby is photography and it could have been so cool and so interesting but we never got to know her because all John sees is a pretty girl.
Henri – John’s legal guardian from Lorien. He’s spent his time on Earth keeping John from the Mogadorians. His personality is also MIA (are you noticing a trend with my descriptions of these characters yet?) so there isn’t really much to say about him. I didn’t feel anything for him but I didn’t hate him. He just happened to be in the book.
Overall another marmite book, I think you’ll either like it or you won’t. There’s no sitting on the fence with this and I’m on team ‘why on earth did I waste my time on this?’. I really didn’t like this and I wish that the synopsis hadn’t been so good, it makes the disappointment worse and the only person to blame is myself. This book is so generic and has nothing remarkable about it. It brings nothing new to the YA table. To end on a positive note the idea is incredible so I’m just gonna wait for the movie.
2 stars – it’s average, hopelessly so and if I’m honest with you the author’s lucky I’ve read some truly diabolical stuff recently because it’s the only thing saving him from 1 star. I recommend this to YA romance fans who aren’t fussy about stilted conversations.
A Final Note
I wrote this review in 2011 and this was my view of the book at that time. (I lost my review book, I just found it so I figured these reviews deserved to be heard too.)
Also there’s a note about swearing. So if you’re sensitive to that beware maybe.