Rating: 3 stars
Sara Voorsanger’s birth literally burned down the house – or the hospital in this case. Born with special abilities, Sara has been locked away in a mental institution for all of her ten years. Isolated from the outside world and subjected to constant testing and drug therapy as doctors and pharmaceutical scientists try to harness and manipulate Sara’s powers for their own financial gain.
When things get out of control and two people are killed, Sara retreats into herself. Jess Chambers, a psychology student, is brought in by one of her college professors under the guise that the young girl is schizophrenic and Jess could be instrumental in providing friendship and a new perspective. When Jess uncovers the truth behind Sara’s imprisonment, the experiments being performed and their potential for mass devastation and destruction, Jess must find a way to save Sara, as well as herself.
I figured the storyline would be a rip-off of Scanners with lots of sinister plotting and heads exploding, but it wasn’t – ok, maybe a little. The writing was reminiscent of vintage King and Koontz, but Kenyon managed to have enough of his own style to set him apart and keep you invested. Also, this wasn’t your usual good guy, catching bad guy and saving the world from a fate worse than death story. It was just opposite. The plot had a bit of a twist in that the line between the protagonist and antagonist was pleasantly blurred, so you’re never really sure who to trust. On the one hand, the doctors were giving Sara enough tranquilizers to stop a charging rhino in its tracks; but they’ve seen the damage she can cause, so it was for her own good, right?
Then there’s Sara. Sure she can cause accidental death or dismemberment with just a look but hey, all kids go through a phase and she means well. Besides, think how helpful she could be at the grocery store or the DMV. Deep down, Sara is a good girl. I’m sure with a little fresh air, sunshine and a few anger management workshops she’ll be playing nice with the other kids in no time. Imagine how much fun it will be at her 11th birthday party. After cake and ice cream and a round of pin-the-tail-on-the-donkey, she can make the clown’s head explode.
Publisher: Dorchester Publishing Company, Incorporated
Pub. Date: November 2008