Genre: Juvenile Fiction/Action & Adventure
Series: Book One of the Homelanders Series
Teenager Charlie West wakes up strapped to a chair after being tortured by terrorists and can’t remember how he got there. As he tries desperately to escape, he replays his final memories, looking for clues to how his normal teenage life transformed so suddenly.
This all-action book reads like a nightmare where the bad guys chase the good guy from one terrific scene to the next. There’s not much character development and the story is quite fun but a bit outrageous. If all the books were like this one, I’m not sure I’d recommend the Homelanders Series, however, it does set up a great mystery which carries on with more strength in the next three books.
As a parent of (so far) one young boy, I was constantly considering how I’d feel about my son reading this as a teenager. I imagine that to a teenage boy (or girl), this book would be quite thrilling and suspenseful, though as a Christian parent I would want to discuss the violence, possible eastern religious influences of karate, the character’s faiths and spiritualities, and a few of the other plot elements. There is a Reading Group Guide included, which I think would make an excellent start to these discussions.