Everything about Annas life is a secret. Her father works for the Branch at the helm of its latest project: monitoring and administering treatments to the four genetically altered boys in the lab below their farmhouse. Theres Nick, Cas, Trevand Sam, whos stolen Annas heart. When the Branch decides its time to take the boys, Sam stages an escape, killing the agents sent to retrieve them. Annas father pushes her to flee, making Sam promise to keep her away from the Branch, at all costs. Now on the run, Anna soon discovers that she and Sam are connected in more ways than either of them expected. And if theyre both going to survive, they must piece together the clues of their past before the Branch catches up to them and steals it all away.
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Jennifer Rush began telling lies at the age of five and was immediately hooked. Fiction was far better than reality, and she spent most of her teens writing (about vampires, naturally). She currently lives in Michigan with her husband and two children and enjoys eating ice cream in her spare time. Altered is her debut novel. Her website is jennrush.blogspot.com.
Gr 8 Up-Four hot guys are locked in rooms below Anna's house: Trev (literary, erudite, yoga practitioner); Cas (artistic, funny, sporty); Nick (cynical, grouchy, vain); and Sam (caring, agile, a leader). Now 18, Anna has interacted with "the units" imprisoned in her father's underground lab for five years, and when she's not being homeschooled, baking cookies, or doing combat training, she helps with blood draws and data collection, occasionally sneaking down for midnight chess games. She's developed special ties with Trev and Sam, and a crush is turning into love. The action kicks in when representatives from the Branch (the secret organization overseeing project OP ALPHA) arrive to take the boys to a new location. They turn the tables, kill most of the Branch team, and flee with Anna as willing accomplice. The science behind the "altering" process is vague. Rush often tells readers that the information is "classified," but she does reveal that experiments in genetic alteration have given the boys a special connection and made them "more than human." Their memories were wiped clean in the process, leading to puzzles dealing with coded scars and tattoos. Those expecting hard science fiction will be disappointed, but readers seeking a "teens on the run" plot featuring surprising twists and turns, romantic entanglements, hard stomachs and curved muscles, and innocent-but-mischievous smiles will come away satisfied.-Maggie Knapp, Trinity Valley School, Fort Worth, TXα(c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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