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The Cloak Society Hardcover – October 2, 2012

72 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 5-8-Like many kids, Alex isn't sure he wants to continue in the family business and is struggling to find his own path. Complicating matters: the family business is super-villainy. His great-grandfather was a founding member of the Cloak Society, a team of radiation-enhanced bad guys whose powers range from controlling electricity to super strength and, in Alex's case, telekinesis. His mother, nicknamed Shade, is telepathic, which presents the ultimate kid nightmare: his mother really can read his mind. On his 12th birthday, Alex stumbles in his first field test-a bank robbery-when his powers cannot open the vault and he impulsively saves Kirbie, a shape-shifting member of The Rangers of Justice and Cloak's superhero counterparts. Alex's suspicions of Cloak's true motives, coupled with his clandestine friendship with Kirbie, make him further question his future. Does he want to use his powers as a destructive force, or can he be more than just a weapon? Alex defies his parents and Cloak, fighting with the Rangers of Justice in a climactic final battle that will leave readers eagerly waiting for what comes next. Kraatz persuasively chronicles Alex's change of heart, from the opening chapter's funny and inventive pro-villain manifesto to his growing unease and courageous decision to leave the only life he's ever known. Readers who enjoy comic-book action will appreciate the original fantasy world with a detailed backstory and myriad intriguing characters. This debut novel is a strong start to a series that will likely find the same wide appeal as Rick Riordan's "Percy Jackson" books (Hyperion).-M. Kozikowski, Sachem Public Library, Holbrook, NYα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

From Booklist

A supervillain-in-training with the Cloak Society, Alex shares his ancestors’ determination to revenge a historical loss and conquer Sterling City, Texas, but when he unexpectedly and inexplicably saves the life of a do-gooder Junior Ranger, he faces choosing between his birthright and the unfamiliar feelings conjured up by a girl he hardly knew. Twelve-year-old Alex struggles with this Romeo-like angst as he continues his evil education while secretly meeting with—and considering joining—the good guys. His peers on both sides are superhero characters with varying abilities and secrets, from metal skin to the ability to become plantlike, and his own developing telekinesis is both a handy skill and a good metaphor for puberty. The debut author’s third-person narration isn’t quite as exciting or interesting as the entertaining (if hackneyed) premise needs, but comic-book lovers in the mood for some prose will appreciate the theme of being true to oneself and will also enjoy the book’s final battle, which leaves things ripe for a sequel. Grades 4-6. --Andrew Medlar
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 8 - 12 years
  • Grade Level: 3 - 7
  • Series: Cloak Society (Book 1)
  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins; 1 edition (October 2, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0062095471
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062095473
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.1 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (72 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #411,848 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Jeramey Kraatz has wanted superpowers ever since he opened his first comic book as a kid. He's a graduate of Texas Christian University and the MFA writing program at Columbia University. The Cloak Society is his first novel. Jeramey lives in Texas, where he works in the animation industry.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Kate Coombs VINE VOICE on January 19, 2013
Format: Hardcover
This book reminds me a little of Mark Walden's H.I.V.E. (Higher Institute of Villainous Education) and sequels as well as Catherine Jinks' Evil Genius and sequels. It starts out with an explication about how super villains get their start and how tough it can be to be one. Normally I don't like books to start with explication, but this riff is genuinely funny in a straight-faced, tongue-in-cheek way.

Alex was born into a family of super villains, members of a group known as the Cloak Society. He has been training all his life to ensure world domination and defeat the society's archenemies: superheroes called the Rangers of Justice.

It's time for Alex's first mission, stealing a diamond called the Excelsior from an impregnable bank. He's one of the young crew, Beta Team, assisting the older members of the society. All of them have super powers. Alex can create a blue light that he uses for telekinesis, but it doesn't always work quite the way he wants it to. On this mission, Alex makes a nearly unforgivable mistake when he impulsively saves a young member of the Rangers of Justice from being killed.

Alex is punished, his loyalty is questioned, and he is put on probation for the forseeable future. Then he runs into the girl whose life he saved and begins meeting her secretly, telling himself he will recruit her and/or kidnap her in time. Only Alex is being tempted by the dark side, AKA the light side, depending how you look at it. And that's not going to turn out well.

After reading the other two books I mentioned, I thought I might not get hooked in by a new one with a similar premise. However, Kraatz makes us care about Alex--about his sneaking around, his unacceptable soft heart, and his giant dilemma.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By SciFiChick VINE VOICE on November 21, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Alex Knight has been raised to become the Cloak Society's greatest weapon, with his extraordinary gift of telekinesis. The Cloak Society doesn't think of themselves as villains, but they'll do anything to get revenge on the Rangers of Justice and establish themselves as rulers of Sterling City. But when Alex is forced to reevaluate his place on the team, he begins to question the Cloak and their true purpose. Alex is a likeable and relatable character with a good heart. There are no cardboard characters here. And as this is told from the "villain's" point of view, readers are treated to more depth and purpose behind their motivations than other comic book-like villains.

I loved every bit of this exciting, superpowered debut. Kraatz knows comics and superheroes - and it shows. Superhero fans of all ages will enjoy this fantastic coming-of-age story with a science fiction twist. Alex takes a thrilling journey of discovery, packed with mystery, suspense, and emotional drama. The action builds to a big finale with a satisfying ending, but readers will be eager for an upcoming sequel. Don't miss this incredible new release that has become one of my favorite books this year.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Samantha Travia on March 26, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
this book is truly amazing. i have already read it five times this week. so totally worth every penny spent on it!!!!!!!!!!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on September 21, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I first took a look at the sample and I was barely past the first few pages before, hook line and sinker, I was caught and one heck of a happy fish I was.
When I finished in what seemed like a couple of hours afterwards I immediately pre-ordered the sequel, I'll let that speak for itself.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Mvargus on March 29, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I guess after reading stories like Confessions of a D-list Supervillian and Wearing the Cape I have a slightly higher standard when it comes to superhero books than others. This is an interesting story with an imaginative plot, but it seemed to lack something.

I'll admit that the main character didn't really draw me in. He does grow quite a bit through the story and as she supposedly starts out as a 12 year old, some of his immaturity is understandable, but he also ends up just too weak a personality. I was intriqued by his story, but not gripped by his trials and perils.

The rest of the cast seemed to come out of comic-book central casting. Motives were almost mindlessly simple, something that more than one character noted in the later chapters. The backstory of the universe adn the previous generations of super-villians was left remarkably undiscussed. Many of the motives seemed more pro-forma than built out of some deep elaborate character personal involvement.

THis is a fast read and definitely interesting. A teenager or a lover of comic-books will find it increbily fun to read, but someone who expects a bit more from his stories will likely end up feeling like the story isn't finished. There is just too little depth to the characters and plot to allow me to give this book more than 3 stars.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By C. Cox on May 3, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Not my favorite children's book, but a good one. In a time where everything is vampires, magic, or a dystopian future, this brought superpowers to the table. Thought it was decently written and a fun read.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Jpherb on May 16, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A child that has been reared as a villian grows a conscience. Great twist on your classic sci-fi/fantasy young adult series. Loveable/hateable characters.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By totofullbuster on November 6, 2012
Format: Hardcover
I just finished "The Cloak Society" a few days ago. It takes a lot for me to crack open a book, and even more for me to stick with it, and this one definitely has what it takes. It's an easy and fun read, and would be great for teens and tweens, but the language and themes are also advanced enough to keep an adults attention. I loved the story and the characters, and I can't wait for the next book to come out!
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