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Save the Enemy Hardcover – November 12, 2013
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The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
Zoey not only sees herself as the new girl at Shenandoah High, she feels like a secret “Tragic Figure.” After losing her mother to a random mugging and murder, Zoey moves from Rhode Island to Old Town Alexandria, Virginia, along with her ever-philosophizing dad and younger brother, Ben, who is a savant on the autistic spectrum. Her affluent, lacrosse-playing, and bookish-cool classmates are unaware of Zoey’s tragic-figure circumstances. And in the midst of her family chaos, Pete, a good-looking, guitar-playing guardian angel, appears. Pete attaches himself to the family like a barnacle and even believes that Ben is receiving coded messages in his dreams from his recently departed mother’s ghost. Clearly, Greenwood asks a lot from her readers. But they will be pulled by Zoey’s strong inner compass and martial-arts prowess, both of which help to reinforce any suspension of belief as the plot moves along its gnarly yet buoyant way. Readers of detective, spy, and crime novels, as well as Ayn Rand fans, will find tidbits to enjoy as Zoey and family prevail against the odds. Grades 9-12. --Gail Bush
Praise for Save the Enemy
"Savvy, fun and fast-paced, Save the Enemy is full of twists and turns that you won't see coming. Ukuleles, libertarians, a dog named Roscoe, a hot boy, and ghosts, all rolled into a twisting, turning mystery? This book had me at hello."
—Jodi Lynn Anderson, New York Times bestselling author of Peaches, May Bird, and Tiger Lily.
“Greenwood’s polished writing, crackling dialog, and irresistible characters make Save the Enemy a standout. Zoey’s up against some bizarre struggles, but her reactions are achingly familiar: a character to root for. A smart thriller that serves up surprises from start to finish.”
—Sophie Littlefield, nationally bestselling author of Garden of Stones
“Full of dead ends, sharp turns and swerving mishaps this mystery novel is a nonstop, high-speed chase for the truth.”
—The New Orleans Advocate
“Readers will be pulled by Zoey’s strong inner compass and martial-arts
Prowess... gnarly yet buoyant. Readers of detective, spy, and crime novels, as well as Ayn Rand fans, will find tidbits to enjoy as Zoey and family prevail against the odds.”
“An intricate tale of confusion and loss as Zoey attempts to peel away the mysteries surrounding her family and her unusual upbringing... This is good for ravenous fans of thrillers with a twist.”
"Part mystery-thriller, part coming-of-age tale, and part romance with a pinch of the paranormal."
—School Library Journal
"Thrilling, chilling, funny and true to life... a dream come true for readers.”
“Reminiscent of A Wrinkle in Time, Greenwood’s debut for teens twists and turns with mysterious men, real bullets and numerous candidates for worst parent ever…. [readers] with a philosophical bent may find references to Kant, Nietzsche and Ayn Rand entertaining.”
“Save the Enemy isn’t your standard YA novel... a madcap adventure.”
Top customer reviews
While I read afterwards that this book is geared towards "young readers," I do not hesitate to recommend it to elders like myself, who recall some of the same mixed emotions and challenges when a teen. Lots of fun insights, problems, details and viewpoints are presented in a suspenseful story line - full of surprises.
The libertarian underpinnings of this novel make it especially appealing giving it another layer of meaning. Far from a heavy handed political treatise, brings the libertarian perspective in gently and sometimes self-critical but entertaining ways.
The youngsters’ father is kidnapped. A note says that Zoey must produce a “J File” to get her father back, but she has no idea what this “J File” is, much less where to find it. Because of the kidnapping, Ben becomes more difficult to manage. Someone is leaving cigarette butts in the toilet at Zoey’s home, and no one there smokes. Zoey has no idea which of several young men her age truly want to help her or mean her harm. She ends up putting to use the self-defense/survival skills her father insisted she learn.
Zoey and Ben impress me as well-executed characters. Zoey is strong -- tough when she has to be. Ben, as I understand many Asperger's people to be, focuses strongly on one interest -- at this time, economics -- and is very demanding about his clothing and his daily routine.
This novel is medium-short, fast, and pow! It moves very quickly, and readers want to keep going to see what happens next. But beware of trying to read this one too quickly, or you’ll get lost.
Zoey and her younger brother, Ben, live with their father just trying to make it through the every day steps of life since their mother was killed. Zoey comes home one day to find her brother waiting on the front porch, a cigarette butt in the toilet, and her father missing. All very strange things, especially when added up together. Ben is autistic and shouldn't be left alone and no on in the house smokes. After a day or so of her father missing, Zoey gets a threat and and a command to hand over the Jfile if she wants to see her father again. There is even more strangeness going on including visits from her ghost mother, odd truths about her father, and a cute boy hanging out with her in the midst of all the weirdness. All three, Zoey, Ben, and the cute boy, Pete, go on a hunt to find her father and the Jfile. This brings in new issues, like danger, secrets, and betrayals.
This book was pretty cool and everything a mystery thriller should be. The writing was done well and fit the story perfectly. The tone, the setting, the pacing, it was all just right to make a very thrilling read. I was always searching for truths and never getting close. I was in the dark until the author wanted to shed the light. I was very pleased by the level of mystery in this book. The pacing was very quick and the story never slowed or felt sluggish. I was entertained through out and very satisfied in the end.
The writing was just the beginning. The characters were pretty darn awesome too. I loved Zoey, she was one strong girl. She would do anything for those she loved and that included putting herself in the pit of danger. She was very fast thinking, quick on her feet, and determined. She made a great detective when she needed to be a great detective. She was very lost in the beginning and couldn't believe the turn of events in her life and at first she was a frightened girl but when it all hit, and hit her hard, she hit the pavement running and didn't slow down until the job was done.
Ben was another awesome character. I love autistic characters, they are very entertaining and when they are done well, I can appreciate the uniqueness and difficulties that come with being autistic. Ben was amazing, smart and blunt. He didn't have any trouble keeping up with his sister.
Pete was also a great secondary character. I could see from the very beginning there was more to him than what was he allowed to be seen. When his true colors came through I liked him more than I did in the beginning. Very sweet and very loyal. He was Zoey's love interest and it was a sweet and cute romance.
The book really did well as an audio. I think this book was more enjoyable because of the audio. I do believe that the book would have been pretty good read but the audio really made it more intense for me. The narrator did a wonderful job getting the town just right and making the characters come alive. Each character was their own and very different from the rest of the cast. She did well keeping the personalities and the voices very unique. I would love to listen to more from this narrator.
A very good read, thrilling, intriguing, and fulfilling. I got exactly what I was hoping for.
Most recent customer reviews
I found this book a little confusing, and hard to get into.Read more