Jack Templar, Monster Hunter (The Templar Chronicles #1)
Published: 10th October, 2012
Seven Guns Press
Orphan Jack Templar has no memory of his parents and only the smallest details from his Aunt Sophie about how they died. The day before Jack’s fourteenth birthday, things start to change for him. At first it’s great: A sudden new strength helps him defend his nose-picking friend “T-Rex” from the school bully, and even his crush, Cindy Adams, takes notice. But then a mysterious girl named Eva arrives and tells him two facts that will change his life forever. First, that he’s the descendent of a long line of monster hunters and he’s destined to be in the family business. Second, that there’s a truce between man and monster that children are off-limits…until their fourteenth birthday! Jack has only one day before hundreds of monsters will descend on his little town of Sunnyvale and try to kill him.
As if that weren’t enough, things get even more complicated when Jack discovers that the Lord of the Creach (as the monsters are collectively known) holds a personal grudge against him and will do anything to see that Jack has a slow and painful death. To stay alive and save his friends, Jack will have to battle werewolves, vampires, harpies, trolls, zombies and more. But perhaps the most dangerous thing he must face is the truth about his past. Why do the other hunters call him the last Templar? Why do they whisper that he may be the “One?” Why do the monsters want him dead so badly? Even as these questions plague him, he quickly discovers survival is his new full-time job and that in the world of monster hunters, nothing is really what it seems.
What I liked: This story has a quirky tone to it, one that is reminiscent of the tone the Percy Jackson series was told in. Semi-serious, humorous, and funny. The female characters in this story are also presented not in the light that they’re weak, but as really strong people. There are a few unexpected twist to the story with some of its characters, though some of it is something you could expect.
What I didn’t like: Even though the tone is reminiscent of the Percy Jackson series, this book fails to pull off the story the way that Percy Jackson could for me. It’s felt very predictable for almost everything that happens. It repeatedly pulls the reader out of the action with Jack stopping to explain something about like the monsters or such in the story, and sometimes it only served to destroy the tension the story was building up. The end commentary also conflicts with the way the book begins where he refers to it as a series of letters that he’s written. Plus, grownups. Do those exist in this story outside when it’s convenient for them to be there? In school you’re hardly ever twenty feet from a teacher at a time when you’re in the building. Yet, no adults when they should have been there? It irks me because I just really do not understand. Also, this story is very light despite it’s promise of “gore” in the opening.
Overall Review: While it was enjoyable in the beginning, after a while to narration style just did not work for me. It would work much better for young boys who want a quick and fun adventure that to them would be fraught with peril to them.
Recommend?: To younger boys who don’t dedicate that much time to reading. An avid reader will likely find this unpleasant due to it’s style after a while.
My Rating: 2.5/5