From School Library Journal
Gr 9 Up-A mix of dystopian, adventure, romance, and superhero origin tale, this book covers all the bases admirably as long as readers are able to suspend their disbelief. Faith Daniels lives in between the strictly government controlled Western and Eastern States, in a zone whose population is dwindling daily through the promised advantages of immigration to the west or east. She also has the Pulse. Dylan has been watching over Faith to find the right time to explain about the supernatural power of the rare few who have it. As events unfold, he is forced to reveal his secret and hers. Faith must adjust not only to her newfound powers but also come to terms with the loss of her parents and the unexpected murder of her best friend. All this must be done pronto, as the evil forces that wish to kill the duo and rule the world are gathering. Faith and Dylan find an ally in nerdy genius Hawk, who is able to hack into the tablets that control all communication and information. As Pulse comes to a close, the forces of good and evil face off for a showdown. Faith, Dylan, and Hawk await the chance to use their intellect and powers to save the world. Engrossing and suspense-filled, this book is sure to find an audience, and readers will eagerly await the sequel.-Cindy Wall, Southington Library & Museum, CTα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Set in a darkly dystopian future, Carman’s latest is a thriller in which the future of civilization is, rather predictably, once again at risk, though exactly why remains unclear. Nevertheless, only three teens can save it: Faith and Dylan, who have telekinetic powers called “The Pulse,” and Hawk, who doesn’t but has the advantage of being the smartest kid in the world. Could the forces of evil, which also have superpowers, have a chance against this trio? Well, in a word, yes. Otherwise there would be no story. The characterization, especially of the evil forces, is rather one-dimensional, and the occasionally thin plot is plagued by inconsistencies. Still, the action, especially in the last third of the book, is sufficiently fast-paced to carry the day and set the stage for volumes two and three of this planned trilogy. Teens will doubtless welcome this latest addition to the field of postapocalyptic fiction. HIGH-DEMAND BACKSTORY: Fans of the author’s best-selling Dark Eden, Skeleton Creek, and Trackers books will be eagerly anticipating this start to a new trilogy. Grades 7-12. --Michael Cart