Monday, May 23, 2011

Book Review: Bandits by LM Preston

Title: Bandits
Author: LM Preston
Reading Level: Young Adult
Publisher: Phenomenal One Press
Paperback, 323 pages
Date Published: June 1, 2011
Description (Taken from Goodreads): 
Daniel's father has gotten himself killed and left another mess for Daniel to clean up. To save his world from destruction, he must fight off his father's killers while discovering a way to save his world. Time is running out, and Daniel must choose to either walk in his father's footsteps or to reinvent himself into the one to save his world.
Bandits is a sci-fi adventure that takes the reader to an entirely new planet and introduces a society unlike anything we’d know on earth. LM Preston has a way with developing and describing the world of Merwin and dangers inherent with being a Zukar – the gangster-like thieves that populate the planet. Daniel, the main character and a Zukar himself, is a far cry from what one would expect a thief and almost-assassin to be. The word thief invokes a shady sort of character, but Daniel is young loving, but quite a serious young man. He adores his younger brother Nickel and even though he harbors a great deal of bitterness towards his recently murdered father, he still cares for him.

The characters surrounding Daniel, including Nickel, the boys’ cousin Faulk, Daniel’s best friend Gabe, and Gabe’s sister Jade, all add a little something extra to the story. Faulk has more than a few comedic moments and he also helps to get a bit of romantic tension going. Gabe and Jade add depth to Daniel as a character, with the history the three of them share, but they, themselves, don’t have as strong a voice as the lead. The group’s interactions range from being humorous to saddening, but at times, the dialogue between them felt forced and stilted. The strongest sections are most definitely when the action comes into play though.

I don’t want to say Bandits is a ‘boy book,’ because it really isn’t, but it will certainly appeal to male and female audience. Where many YA books focus a great deal on a love story, Bandits focuses on the action, the adventure, and the search for answers. A romantic aspect is present, but never the entire focus. The gizmos and gadgets fascinated me, as did the creatures the group encounters. Learning exactly what Daniel and Nickel’s father died for was both a surprise and a pleasure.

Bandits features pirates, thieves, insanely weird, yet awesome creatures, and a group of wonderfully insane, but heartfelt characters. The book is published by a small press, and it could have used a bit more editing to tighten it all up and eliminate some repetition, but th issues I had didn’t detract too much from the overall story. If you are/know a teen who loves a good adventure with some great action sequences, then Bandits is the one for you/them.

Opening line: Daniel rolled over and punched his pillow. ~ pg. 1

Favorite lines: “You can be scared and brave, swallow your fear and do what needs to be done.” ~ pg. 245
*This review is my honest opinion and I received no monetary compensation from it.

**LM Preston has a promotional freebie going on to download an e-book of BANDITS, so if you're interested, visit her blog and get your free copy of the book
Find LM Preston online:

Buy it online:


Bere said...

Fantastic review, Nikki, as always. I love the quote you chose. Definitely true. Bandits sounds quite interesting and full of action. I'm not sure if this is the type of book for me but I will definitely keep it in mind. Thanks, Nikki =).

Candace said...

It's funny how covers really help you remember a book. I remember this book because I didn't care for the cover at all. I do love a good pirate story so I was anxious to hear if it was any good.
I'm happy to hear that you mostly enjoyed it!

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