The central character in this young adult action adventure story is Ocean Daley a 16 year old schoolboy who when the book commences is about to take his GCSE's at his school in Shoreham on Sea in Sussex. Excelling in both the academic and sporting sense Ocean is nevertheless restless and is keen to escape during the summer break from the suffocating confines of the seaside town and his rather annoying mother and her somewhat anti social boyfriend. Then his mysterious Uncle Frank turns up offering a place at a summer school in the Midlands cantering for a specially selected group of gifted teenagers. Deceiving his mother who has no time for Frank he departs for the summer school and the adventure begins.
Strangely there are only 5 other attendees and it becomes clear that this is a school far removed from the norm. In order to stay on the course you need to pass in the physical, psychological and practical disciplines attuned to an organisation operating in a world of special and black ops. The story is fast moving and there is a terrific twist that occurs about two thirds of the way through which totally changes everything and sets up a cracking finale. Who and what is Orca, is it a force for good or evil and who can and can not be trusted are the themes that preoccupy the reader. By the end some of your earlier perceptions of some of the characters have certainly changed.
I certainly found this an enjoyable read and if you liked Charlie Higson's Young Bond series or indeed "The Maze" or "The Hunger Games" then I do not believe you will be disappointed. The ending certainly sets up the probability of a sequel for which I certainly will look out for.
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