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Richard Paul Evans is the number one international bestselling author of The Christmas Box and seventeen consecutive New York Times bestsellers. He is also the winner of the American Mothers Book Award and two first-place Storytelling World Awards.
In fifth grade my English teacher, Ms. Berg, was teaching about autobiographies and had us each write our life story on a single page of lined paper. I’m not sure which is more pathetic:
(a) That Ms. Berg thought our lives could be summed up on one page, or
(b) I could fill only half the page.
Let’s face it, in fifth grade you’re still kind of waiting for life to begin. Yeah, some of the kids had done cool things, like one had gone skydiving; another had been to Japan; and one girl’s father was a plumber and she got to be in her dad’s TV commercial waving a plunger, so she’s kind of famous—but that’s about as cool as it got. All I remember is that my autobiography was super lame. It went something like:
My name is Michael Vey, and I’m from a town you’ve never heard of—Meridian, Idaho. My father died when I was eight, and my mother and I have moved around a lot since then. I like to play video games. Also, I have Tourette’s syndrome. I’m not trying to be funny, I really do.
You probably know that Tourette’s makes some of us swear a lot, which would have made my story more interesting, or maybe got it banned, but I don’t swear with my Tourette’s. In my case, Tourette’s just means I have a lot of tics, like I blink, gulp, make faces, stuff like that. That’s about it. As far as life stories go, no one’s called to buy the movie rights.
They might if they knew my secret—the secret I’ve hidden for most of my life and the reason my mom and I keep having to move.
I’m electric. So are you, of course. That’s how your brain and muscles work. But the thing is, I have probably a thousand times more electricity than you. And it seems to be growing stronger. Have you ever rubbed your feet on a carpet, then shocked someone? Multiply that by a thousand and you’ll get an idea of what it’s like to be me. Or shocked by me. Fortunately, I’ve learned to control it.
I’m fifteen years old now and a lot has happened since the fifth grade. I kind of wish someone would ask me to write my life story now, because it would make a good movie. And it would take up way more than one page. This is how it would go:
My name is Michael Vey, and I’m more electric than an electric eel. I always thought I was the only one in the world like me, but I’m not. I just found out that there were originally seventeen of us. And the people who made us this way, the Elgen, are hunting us down. You might say we were an accident. The Elgen Corporation created a machine called the MEI (short for Magnetic Electron Induction), to be used for finding diseases and abnormalities in the body. Instead it created abnormalities—us.
My girlfriend, the way-out-of-my-league cheerleader with perfect brown eyes, Taylor Ridley, is also electric. I can shock people (I call it “pulsing”), but she can shock people’s brains and make them forget what they were doing (she calls it “rebooting”). She can also read minds, but she has to touch you to do it.
One month ago the Elgen, led by a scary dude named Dr. Hatch, found us. They kidnapped Taylor and tried to get me, too, but ended up with my mother instead. A few days later I went to California with my best friend, Ostin Liss (he and I live in the same apartment building, and he’s one of the few people who knows about my powers), and a couple of kids from my school, Jack and Wade, to save Taylor and my mother.
Things didn’t go so well. In the first place, Taylor was there but my mother wasn’t. Then we got caught. Jack and Wade were forced to be GPs, which is short for human guinea pigs, the name the Elgen give their prisoners they experiment on. Ostin and I were locked up too, though I was put in Cell 25, the place they put people to break their minds.
I managed to escape and rescue my friends. I was also able to rescue four of the other electric kids: Zeus, Ian, McKenna, and Abigail. They have some pretty cool powers too. Zeus can shoot lightning bolts, which is why he’s named after the Greek god. (But he can’t touch water without shocking himself, so he doesn’t bathe much—actually, never—so he kind of smells.)
Ian’s blind but he can see way better than any of us. He sees the same way sharks and electric eels do, through electrolocation—which means he can see things that are miles away, even through walls.
McKenna can create light and heat from any part of her body.
Abigail can take away pain by electrically stimulating nerve endings.
We also rescued Grace. She was one of the electric kids who were loyal to Hatch (who calls us Glows). I don’t know much about her other than that she can download things from computers and she downloaded all the information from the Elgen’s mainframe before we escaped. We’re hoping she has information on where the Elgen have taken my mother.
There are ten of us now (including our nonelectric friends Ostin, Jack, and Wade). We call ourselves the Electroclan.
There’s one more thing I would put in my autobiography, something that scares me but would make my story more interesting. I don’t know for sure, but I may be dying. Hatch told me that four of the electric children have already died of cancer caused by their electricity—and I have more electricity than any of them. I don’t know if it’s true because Hatch is a liar. I guess time will tell. In the meanwhile we’re headed back to my home in Meridian, Idaho, to figure out where my mother is and plan our next move.
Like I said, I think my story would make a pretty good movie so far. Maybe it will be one day. But not yet, because it’s not even close to being over. And I have a feeling that things are about to get a whole lot wilder.
--This text refers to the
I didn't buy this from Amazon, though I usually buy all my books here. I got this book for my daughter at Restoring Love a few weeks before it came out. We waited in line hours to have it signed by Richard Paul Evans. He was great. However, the book it itself is wonderful. My child, who hates reading, wouldn't put it down. She read it all within a day and we had to MAKE her take breaks. I would recommend this book to anyone with children between the ages of 9 or 10 and 16 to 17.
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I checked the kindle app on my tablet last night at around 11:30pm and was excited to see Michael Vey 2 start downloading. I began reading immediately and finished the novel around 3:45 this morning... Yep, it was gripping, well-paced and exciting.
I won't issue any spoilers, but I highly recommend this novel to adults (I'm 34) and adolescents alike for a few specific reasons. First, it is well-written and enjoyable as a work of fiction. Second, the heroes are truly heroic as a result of the choices they make not simply because they have powers. In fact some of the most heroic choices are made by those with no powers. And finally, who hasn't imagined what it would be like to have superpowers and punch Nazis (I mean Elgen) in the face!
Well done Richard Paul Evans! I want more!!
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Richard Paul Evans does not dissapoint with this new book! It is a fast read and hard to put down just like the first one! I loved the characters, various storylines going on that kept you guessing and unable to put the book or Kindle down! Yay for Michael Vey #2, hoping #3 comes out soon!
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Michael Vey and his band of electric friends, the Electroclan, have escaped the Elgen compound but find that the powerful group is still after them. Michael's powers grow in this sequel to MICHAEL VEY: THE PRISONER OF CELL 25, along with his leadership skills, as they face everything from explosions and electrically-charged rats to missing family members and life-threatening rescues.
When the adventure begins, Michael, his girlfriend Taylor, several electric friends and a couple of non-powered ones are attempting to hide in their small Idaho town. They are trying to regroup and study data that one electric teen downloaded from the Elgen's mainframe so they can return and rescue Michael's captured mom. Then Jack's house is burned down, Elgen guards are waiting at Ostin's, and Taylor's family is in danger. They try McKenna's family when a mysterious cell phone is given to Michael. It can only be turned on by electric people, and a voice tells him he wants to help.
However, the Electroclan has learned to trust no one and formulates their own plan. A high-speed car chase with an explosion is just one of the dangers they encounter, but they are able to get to Peru with help from the mysterious man on the phone.
In the meantime, Hatch is organizing his new army led by several electric kids who idolize him. One is Tara, Taylor's evil twin. They still have Michael's mother and are building a race of electricity-creating superrats, retraining Elgen guards from all over the world for Hatch's world domination plan.
Unthwarted by the jungle they find, Michael and the Electroclan make their way into the Elgen compound for the rescue. They are recaptured, and the scenes with the rats will keep readers turning pages quickly to find out how they escape.Read more ›
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First Sentence: "This better be important," the man said.
A Quick Synopsis: In this sequel to last year's Michael Vey: The Prisoner of Cell 25, Michael, Taylor, Ostin, and your favorite Electroclan members (and their enemies, too) are back! The Electroclan escaped from the Elgen Academy in Pasadena, but things are about to get tougher. The Elgen are hot on their trail. After barely escaping a devious trap set by the Elgen, the group begins the journey to rescue Michael's mother, who was kidnapped by the Elgen. Will they succeed in defeating the Elgen a second time, or is Michael headed back to Cell 25?
The Review: Richard Paul Evans's Young Adult debut completely blew me away last year. So I headed into this sequel to it with very lofty expectations. And you know what? It didn't completely meet them, and yet, I still loved it. Part of the fun was meeting Michael and company for the first time last year, and while in Rise of the Elgen we are seeing them for the second time, it's still an amazing experience. Michael is a teenager that plenty of teenagers will be able to relate to, as well as look up to. Ostin is as brainy and hilarious as ever. Taylor is a sweet supporting character, Zeus is an energetic blob of fun, and the minor Electroclan characters are very well-developed. Even the nefarious Dr. Hatch is multilayered, and will even make some readers feel sorry for him.
The plot was every bit as original as the first Michael Vey. Mr. Evans manages to balance our characters's powers with the challenges they face perfectly. I loved how the plot in this follow-up reinforced the things in Book 1 while bringing new things to the table and expanding our sights here in Book 2. The title describes the plot quite well; the Elgen truly are rising, and danger is growing.Read more ›
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Richard Paul Evans When Richard Paul Evans wrote the #1 best-seller, The Christmas Box, he never intended on becoming an internationally known author.
Officially, he was an advertising executive, an award-winning clay animator for the American and Japanese markets, candidate for state legislature and most importantly, husband and father. The Christmas Box was written as an expression of love for his (then) two daughters. Though he often told them how much he loved them, he wanted to express his love in a way that would be timeless. In 1993, Evans reproduced 20 copies of the final story and gave them to his closest relatives and friends as Christmas presents. In the month following, those 20 copies were passed around more than 160 times, and soon word spread so widely that bookstores began calling his home with orders for it.
His quiet story of parental love and the true meaning of Christmas made history when it became simultaneously the #1 hardcover and paperback book in the nation. Since then, more than eight million copies of The Christmas Box have been printed. The Emmy award-winning CBS television movie based on The Christmas Box starred Maureen O'Hara and Richard Thomas. Two more of Evans's books were produced by Hallmark and starred such well-known actors as James Earl Jones, Vanessa Redgrave, Naomi Watts, Mary McDonough and Academy award winner Ellen Burstyn. He has since written 10 consecutive New York Times bestsellers and is one of the few authors in history to have hit both the fiction and non-fiction bestseller lists. He has won three awards for his children's books including the 1998 American Mothers book award and two first place Storytelling World awards. Evans's latest book, The 5 Lessons a Millionaire Taught Me About Life and Wealth, is now available.
Of his success, Evans says: "The material achievements of The Christmas Box will never convey its true success, the lives it has changed, the families brought closer together, the mothers and fathers who suddenly understand the pricelessness of their children's fleeting childhood. I share the message of this book with you in hopes that in some way, you might be, as I was, enlightened."
During the Spring of 1997, Evans founded The Christmas Box House International, an organization devoted to building shelters and providing services for abused and neglected children. Such shelters are operational in Moab, Vernal, Ogden and Salt Lake City, Utah and Lucre, Peru. To date, more than 16,000 children have been housed in Christmas Box House facilities.
As an acclaimed speaker, Evans has shared the podium with such notable personalities as President George W. Bush, President George and Barbara Bush, former British Prime Minister John Majors, Ron Howard, Elizabeth Dole, Deepak Chopra, Steve Allen, and Bob Hope. Evans has been featured on the Today show and Entertainment Tonight, as well as in Time, Newsweek, People, The New York Times, Washington Post, Good Housekeeping, USA Today, TV Guide, Reader's Digest, and Family Circle. Evans lives in Salt Lake City, Utah, with his wife, Keri, and their five children.