That’s right, y’all. Max is back.
As a self-professed Max Ride fanatic since ’05, one can probably imagine my surprise when I was perusing the book racks in CostCo and saw this little gem. Alright, I admit it: I had no idea this book was even coming out. No idea whatsoever. I’ve been shirking my duty as a fan; I’ll be the first to come out and say it. But the initial shock did not dilute my excitement. I made my purchase, and went home to start reading.
When compared to earlier books in the series (The Angel Experiment, School’s Out Forever, Saving the World and Other Extreme Sports), this fifth installment seems to lack the freshness and excitement, at least for me. I know I wasn’t nearly as enthralled as I was when I read the very first Max Ride book, although Max is certainly not short on new characters and surprising developments. The size of the text was amusing (which is to say, gigantic), and made it reading it feel like reading a children’s book.
Max/Fang fans like myself DEFINITELY got what they’ve been waiting for in this novel. There’s a lot of fluff to make the fangirls go wild. Over the last couple installments, readers have probably noticed that Max has been paying more and more attention to her feelings toward Fang (if not just trying to ignore them more and more). In Max, it all comes together; there’s one page in particular in which Max turns into an absolute, drippy, sentimental ball of mush and I ate it up with a spoon. I can’t resist romance for the life of me.
The only thing I genuinely dislike about Max: A Maximum Ride Novel is Max’s “sense of humor”. Despite being one of the things that initially made me such a fan of the series, I just think it’s gotten a bit too over-the-top. I’ll give you an idea of how bad it’s gotten: think of Maximum Ride after just seeing the movie Juno and trying to use the same overtly-attitudinal hipster speak as Ellen Page. I think you get the picture.
It’s hard to say whether this installment marks the end of the series or not, since there are still some issues left unresolved and, in typical James Patterson fashion, things are left open-ended. Considering how there are already five volumes, I don’t really see it ending any time soon. And hopefully it won’t – the world just can’t seem to get enough of our favorite flock of birdkids.