David Klass, Author . FSG/Foster $17 (289p) ISBN 978-0-374-32307-3

This gripping first novel in the Caretaker Trilogy introduces high school senior Jack Danielson: "You want pace? I'll give you pace. You want weird? Stick around, my friend." Klass (Dark Angel ), through his hyperintelligent, otherworldly narrator, delivers both. A star running back on the football team, Jack barely has time to savor a victory before his father whisks him away, warning him that everything the teen believes is a lie. Jack's high profile on the evening sportscast has brought him to the attention of sinister forces. His father, who calls Jack "our beacon of hope," sends off his son in a flurry of laser blasts and mysterious warnings, to a boat to cross the Hudson. In New York City, a beautiful girl (really a shapeshifting wolf) captures him, calling him "the Prince himself" and asking him where to find "Firestorm." Gisco, a telekinetic dog, ends up Jack's only friend on his sudden, surreal journey. A visionary from the far future has sent Jack back in time to stem the tides brought by global warming, but trailing him is the Dark Army, which thrives in the deteriorated Earth of the future. Klass's fragmented first-person narrative both suggests Jack's extraordinarily quick thinking and also keeps the pace going at lightning speed. The plot bears a strong similarity to the Terminator films, but its muscular tone and drip-by-drip reveal of secrets make it a total thrill ride, and one with a profound message. Ages 10-up. (Sept.) Agent: Aaron M. Priest Literary Agency.

Reviewed on: 10/09/2006
Release date: 09/01/2006
Genre: Children's
Prebound-Sewn - 978-1-4178-2412-0
Paperback - 299 pages - 978-0-312-38018-2
Hardcover - 435 pages - 978-0-7862-9364-3
Open Ebook - 304 pages - 978-1-4668-0608-5
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