Michael Vey 2: Rise of the Elgen (Novel)

Michael Vey 2: Rise of the Elgen (Novel)


Michael, Taylor, Ostin, and the rest of the Electroclan have escaped from the Elgen Academy in Pasadena and are headed back to Idaho to plan their next move. But what’s waiting for them there will change everything.

After using their wits and powers to narrowly escape an Elgen Trap, a mysterious voice leads the Electroclan to the jungles of Peru in search of Michael’s mother. Once there, they discover that Dr. Hatch and the Elgen are far more powerful than anyone realizes; entire countries have begun to fall under their control. Only the Electroclan and an anonymous voice now stand in the way of the Elgen’s plan for global domination.

But is the voice that Michael is following really an ally, or is it just another Elgen trap?

Dove Review

Engaging and packed with action, “Michael Vey and the Rise of the Elgen” is supposed to be a Young Adult (YA) novel and is the second in the “Michael Vey” series. While the plot is compelling, the story is quite violent and graphic.

The protagonist, Michael Vey, is surrounded by his teenage friends. Much of the book deals with developing the characters and their relationships to one another. Being a mixed group of boys and girls, the story deals with some benign romance (mostly hand holding and flirting). The interaction between a few of the boys is full of empty threats, immature joking, and flaring tempers. In short, the characterization is typical of teen literature.

What I found to be most troubling, however, was the amount of violence contained in the book. There are explosions resulting in human mortality, man-eating rats, a flippant attitude to violent acts, and more. Many of these occurrences were left without consequence, even among the “bad guys.” Several times during the reading I asked myself, “Was that really necessary to developing the plot?” More often than not, the answer was “no.” Considering the violence, we cannot recommend this book to an audience concerned with family values.

Content Description

Faith: None
Integrity: None
Sex: Boy calls girl “hot” a few times; boy kisses girl; girl kisses the top of boy’s head a couple of times; man brags about making a woman “do a belly dance” for a drink of water; several occurrences of boy/girl hand holding, hugging, and benign touching (on back, arm, etc.) - mostly in order to comfort.
Language: Crap-2; Poop-2; several insults; multiple occurrences of childish name calling.
Violence: Many occurrences of teens shocking humans; several references to guns; many occurrences of striking others about the head; implied murder of a man; references to explosions, many resulting in death (not seen, implied); a few occurrences of teens and adults shot with darts; many threats of torture; man puts booted foot on boy’s neck, pushing his face into the carpet; man kicks boy in the stomach; man puts a harness on a girl; several occurrences of men using machines connected to teens to inflict pain; reference to a boy’s nose being bloodied; several occurrences of teens strapped to cots or in restraints; boy bleeding from nose and forehead; several death threats; intentional car crashes resulting in human death; guard hits boy over the head with a pistol, knocking him out; man threatens to throw boy and man out of an airplane; boy describes the way rats “strip meat off a 2,000 lb. bull in less than a minute”; many threats of people being eaten by rats; many references to torturing woman with electric rats; Room of people view video clip of a man being eaten by rats, details of his screaming and, ultimately, his skeleton stripped of flesh; man shoots a bull in the head with a rifle; boy throws concussion grenade at electric rats; several occurrences of rats attacking humans in order to eat them; boy covered with burn blisters and rat bites, blood streams from his skin; teens use dynamite to cause explosion; burning of a forest in order to capture boy.
Drugs: Mention of an alcoholic father; several occurrences of teens drugged by adults; guards drugged (unbeknownst to them) with antidepressant; man smoking a cigarette; teens come across a pile of cigarette butts
Nudity: Man changes clothes, is shirtless for a moment; men left in underwear after their uniforms are taken.
Other: Main character’s father died when he was eight; Tourette’s syndrome; genetic mutation; teens with super powers; suicide/attempted suicide; exploitation/forced labor; cult-like “family;” New World Order; manipulation of vulnerable teens; reeducation camps/prison camps; brainwashing; torture; anti-government and religious sentiment (held by bad guy); evolution;


Company: Simon Pulse / Mercury Ink
Genre: Fiction
Reviewer: Susie Finkbeiner