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The Pretender - Rebirth Paperback – September 22, 2013
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As a lifelong fan clinging to the hope of answers post Island of the Haunted, the reboot aspect was disappointing in some sense, because it feels like we've gone back to the beginning. However, it doesn't take away from the quality of the book. It has been 12 years after all, and unless you've watched the show on DVD recently, you may need a refresher. The book will also serve the purpose of bringing new fans into the franchise, which given how twisty things got by the time Island of the Haunted ended, would alienate newcomers more than likely if they didn't understand the backstory. The book sets up the themes of the Pretender well. It borrows many aspects from the TV pilot and early episodes from 1996, though, has modernized it somewhat and put some new spins on the origins of The Pretender itself.
This isn't TV-14 rated, as some of the language and themes go a bit beyond what the show could on network TV. This is both good and bad depending on your perspective. It truly lets you see more of the mysterious dark pain in Miss Parker's life and show the even darker nature of some of the characters that make up The Centre. Compare them against Jarod, we still see that naïve innocence and desire for justice as Jarod Pretends his way into righting the wrongs. The book makes it much more profound than TV could as a result, and the distinction between the characters is very evident. If the characters develop and change over the series of books as they did in the show, the changes could be very dramatic and powerful given the stark contrasts shown in the book. As we get to know the true inner thoughts as they make those changes, it will be very rewarding to the reader.
In the end, this is a great start to the series of novels and should hopefully bring in new fans and old alike. I am not going to give away any spoilers, as it is truly something to read and become engrossed in once again. If anything though, I just really hope the answers remaining from the TV show get wrapped up one way or another, as there wasn't much revealed this time around for the veteran fans of The Pretender. Newcomers though will get a taste of something special and get to experience the magic of the Pretender as we did on TV a little over 17 years ago.
The book will end leaving you waiting for the next book to come out. Now that the characters and themes are established, the sky is the limit on where the creators could take the story. I eagerly await Book 2, and the possible mysteries and shocking answers it may hold.
However, it was not quite what I was expecting.
For the older fans it might be a little bit of a disappointment because instead of being a continuation of the TV show and TV movies it is instead a partial retelling of the Pretender Pilot that has been updated for present day. The story has been changed some though, so don't worry you will still have no clue whats really going on until the PTB want you to.
Just to keep it interesting though a new (and rather creepy) character has been introduced and we learn some interesting facts about Sydney that we didn't know before. We also get a rather unique look inside Jarod's head and a look at what life was like in the Centre for him.
Though it was not exactly what I was hoping for, it is still a great book that you can tell SLM and CVS were very passionate about writing it and certainly make me eager for the next book!
THE PRETENDER LIVES!
The story was immediately engaging and all so familiar, and it spun out in my head as I was reading like an episode playing in my mind. The familiar faces and voices all there, and some new ones too, which I was surprised to find that I thoroughly enjoyed them!(which was most unexpected). Cleverly done to embrace old fans and welcome new, a little darker and edgier than the series now the limits of television production are no longer there. Despite initial misgivings, found myself dragged back into the Pretender Universe as easily as slipping in a DVD and just absolutely loved it!
Anxiously awaiting the next installment, even more greedy for more Pretender than ever before. Steven and Craig have done a wonderful job with this, re-igniting my love for the show and story more than ever before. It was like meeting up with old friends you haven't seen in ... well 12 years... and everything falls so naturally and you slip into that comfortable friendship immediately.
Loved the new bits of information and insight into the characters and their motivations and the plot line itself was fast paced and verrrrry interesting too. Cannot wait for the sequel.
Do yourself a favour and read this!
There are so many things wrong with this. 1-This is just a retelling of the plot, but with a few things added. 2- The start was confusing and hard to follow. From what I able to get from it, it was terrorists mad at each other, and some shooting. 3- The writing style is horrible. It was as if an elementary school child wrote it. It was complete with BAM! WHAM! BANG! SMASH! For a second or two, I thought I was watching the old Batman (The one with Adam West) TV series. 4-The language. What was the purpose with all the swearing. It's not necessary. 4-The sex in the book was over the top. Come on, The Pretender has nothing to do with sex. It was a joke.
Over all, skip it. There are good stories among us.....this isn't one of them.