I first heard about The Medusa Project via Twitter and after a quick bit of Googling I discovered what the mysterious Medusa Project was all about. Four teenagers. A government experiment. Psychic powers.
I was immediately left wanting more, and the little goodies I received on occassion from S&S did nothing to make me calm down about it. My big worry (besides not being able to read it) was that it would not live up to the expectations I had been placing on it.
Nope. It was good. :P
The Set Up (obviously the first in a series) contains well-written, vibrant characters, and while Nico sometimes carries the idiot ball at times, he is for the most part a very natural sounding teenage boy (which might explain away the idiot ball to some) with realistic reactions to the craziness that is surrounding him now that his Medusa Gene power has activated. The same goes for the other characters, and McKenzie uses the tool of unreliable narrator to surprise us with extra layers for her characters later on.
One thing I loved: this book is very English (which is a soft-spot of mine when it comes to books, movies and TV). And I do mean very. If you are not familiar with English slang and the like, now is a good time to familiarise yourself. Otherwise you might find yourself wondering what Nico is going on about.
One thing I didn’t like: I am eight to nine years older than Nico and the other three teens, and sometimes that age gap between reader and narrator really showed. Sometimes Nico sounded older than he should have, and sometimes he sounded younger. I think that someone more in the recommended age range for this book (12+) would have enjoyed this book more than I did, as it will “fit” with them better.
Overall though, The Medusa Project: The Set Up was a fast, enjoyable read that I think the target audience will enjoy.