Monday, December 13, 2010

Rise of Renegade X by Chelsea Campbell

Jacket Blurb:
Sixteen-year-old Damien Locke has a plan: major in messing with people at the local supervillain university and become a professional evil genius, just like his supervillain mom. But when he discovers the shameful secret she's been hiding all these years, that the one-night stand that spawned him was actually with a superhero, everything gets messed up. His father's too moral for his own good, so when he finds out Damien exists, he actually wants him to come live with him and his goody-goody superhero family. Damien gets shipped off to stay with them in their suburban hellhole, and he has only six weeks to prove he's not a hero in any way, or else he's stuck living with them for the rest of his life, or until he turns eighteen, whichever comes first.
To get out of this mess, Damien has to survive his dad's "flying lessons" that involve throwing him off the tallest building in the city--despite his nearly debilitating fear of heights--thwarting the eccentric teen scientist who insists she's his sidekick, and keeping his supervillain girlfriend from finding out the truth. But when Damien uncovers a dastardly plot to turn all the superheroes into mindless zombie slaves, a plan hatched by his own mom, he discovers he cares about his new family more than he thought. Now he has to choose: go back to his life of villainy and let his family become zombies, or stand up to his mom and become a real hero.

My review:
This book is just kinda a fun, dirty, super-villain thrill ride.I enjoyed this book quite a bit. I would love a sequel or a movie version or really anything that would bring me back to the universe of "Renegade X."
Damien is a very, very good protagonist. Can I use the word enthralling, or is that a little fangirly? He's just the perfect combination of smart, cocky, neglected, a little bit idiotic, and brave but not in a sappy way. Like, he's not, "OMG MUST GO SAVE THE LIFE OF THIS KITTEN BECAUSE IT IS THE RIGHT THING TO DO" he just kinda is brave without thinking or talking about it. I don't know if he saves kittens though. I also loved his epic big Fear. He reminded me a bit of Cassel from White Cat, although I have a lot more hope for Damien than I do for Cassel (watch me lose five followers from that statement). It was fun watching him decide what is the "right" thing for him to do, regardless of whether it's something a hero or a villain would do. I think that central issue of his is the main driving force of this story. There was a plot but I remember Damien and his coming of age a lot more clearly. :P
But there's a lot more going on too. Damien's supervillain mom always made me laugh and facepalm. I liked the hero family a lot! They were soooo awkward all the time, and I love awkwardness. Plus they were just cute and absurd. I didn't love either of the two love interests. The one girl didn't get much screen time, but we were supposed to care about her because Damien got his heart broken by her (before the main story takes place....good luck with that) and the other girl was just...really annoying. :P I kinda wanted her to get kicked off of a building.
Oh and all the inventions! Damien's mom is a sort of evil mad scientist, and all of her concoctions, combined by the inventions of a certain other character, were always hilarious, delicious, or really cool.
The humor in this made me very happy. Like the intern that Damien's mom keeps catching and hanging on the wall. Don't ask. The jokes are dirty at times and irreverent pretty much all the time, but I guess that's just my thing. ;)

I gave this five out of five stars. As much as I love the title of this book, it is kinda a mouthful. I keep shortening it to Renegade X. Also, I really want a sequel to this book, so I say you should all go buy copies right now. Or put it on your Christmas list. Or ask me really, really nicely to buy it for you.


Snazel said...

I love Rise of Renegade X so much! I didn't think that you'd dislike the love interests, though. While I didn't expect you to like the "heroine" (ick,) I did really like the "villainess." :D :D Maybe cause I'm just evil.

And if we ever do a contest, we should totally give away a copy of this book, eh?

Bahnree said...

Me disliking the villainess had nothing to do with evil. I just never saw her do anything, besides be all heartbroken that they'd broken up. *shrug* Maybe if she had been evil more I would have loved her more. I just didn't have an opinion on her, cuz we barely see her, it seems like.