Friday, March 15, 2013

Review: Harken, by Kaleb Nation

Harken (Harken, #1)

Title: Harken (Harken, #1)
Author: Kaleb Nation
Publication Date: January 9th, 2013
Genre: YA Fantasy (Supernatural)

After surviving an assassination attempt, teenager Michael Asher discovers that he is at the center of a worldwide conspiracy reaching higher than any earthly power. A supernatural organization desperately wants him dead. He doesn't know why. Everyone who might have the answers has already been killed.

Tumbling into a web of international secrets, Michael is forced to fight back and dig up the truth. He begins to question how much of the world is truly as people are led to believe it is. Are there things that humanity is not being told? Who is the puppet master? And how far into the maze can he venture before he is lost forever? - Goodreads

My Rating: 5/5 Stars

For those of you who have still not read this, and/or are a bit hesitant about reading it, READ it. Now. *commanding voice* You will not regret it.

Kaleb, let me just say, you are a genius. Your writing is spectacular, and the plot was, to say the least, heart-stopping and packed with action. This book had an air of suspense and mystery that really kept my interest intact as I was reading Harken. And when an author manages to make me shed a tear or two from the immense connection I feel towards the characters of said book, that is a huge factor in my opinion as to whether I liked, loved, or disliked a book. Which is why I say this with utmost certainty, I loved this book.

Now, there are only a handful of YA action books out there that can be classified as "good" action books. Harken is one of those select few. Well, that and Alex Rider, but that's a whole different topic.

Here is my brilliantly constructed equation for what I believes makes an undeniably amazing action book:

Conspiracy theories + Heart-stopping action scenes + Supernatural beings + Supernatural abilities= PURE AMAZING-NESS

The pacing in this novel was impeccably crafted. The beginning sucks you into the world of Michael Asher. Then, BOOM. Nonstop action thrown at you for the rest of the book. I love, love, loved how all the pieces fit together in a satisfying way by the end of the book.

What really stood out for me in this book is Michael Asher's character. He felt so real. I could feel his emotions, understand his actions and why he chose to do them. Although I didn't always agree with his choices -which is not necessarily a bad thing- I still understood his rationale, why he did so-and-so. That is what made him such a great character -the author made it easy for us, as readers, to connect with him.

Also, the protectiveness he displayed toward his family was a very admirable trait. It felt very genuine. I knew he loved his family, since the author did a good job of showing this. This trait made me respect Michael, and really made him that much easier to relate to.

Usually, in the Young Adult genre, the main character has these faithful companions. These particular companions do not have any notable qualities that set them apart from the main character. I guess the right way to say this is that they don't have individuality. The supporting characters in Harken -Callista and Thad- do not suffer from this quality that makes the characters themselves seem insignificant and flat in comparison to the protagonist. They don't follow and agree with every single thing their leader says or does like two loyal puppies. Of course, they support him, but they do not unquestionably follow him.

The author provides us with background information on Thad and Callista, and this really makes these characters easier to understand, and sets them apart.

Lately, I have come across countless villains that are pathetically lame. There was not anything that made them seem evil to me. For the villains in Harken, that was not the case. They had qualities that were terrifying, and they were twisted, evil people with malicious intents. I also understood their motives. Not that they were good motives, but they explained a load about the plot-line. We were told the reasons why they were doing something, and that they didn't do things just for the heck of it.

I cannot fathom how I am supposed to wait for the next book. I truly feel this uncontrollable need to know what occurs next. I'm hoping that I don't die of excitement when I get my hands on that book.


  1. I love watching Kaleb Nation's videos on Youtube and was surprised when he said he was coming out with a new book. I didn't even know he was a author *looks down shamefully* After reading your review, I'll definitely have to check it out! :D

    New GFC follower!
    Daphne @ Reading Until Dawn

    1. I am like the exact opposite! I knew he was an author, but only until recently have I actually started watching his videos on youtube.
      Thanks for the follow! :D

  2. You loved it!! Now I feel like I have to pick this thing up right away! Too bad I live in Indonesia... It usually takes up to 3 months for books to be on the bookstores after they got released in USA. And sometimes, even a year .__. Or not at all T_T

    1. Ah that sucks :(. But have you ever tried NetGalley? Some publishers want international readers, so if you request a book, you'll more than likely get accepted.

    2. Yes, I tried Edelweiss. They have amazing new titles but sometimes the books I'm dying to read are not there *sigh* I tried Netgalley once, but got rejected :( Haven't tried again though xD

  3. Great blog! Now following :) Would love a follow back!