Jul 19 2011

Review for Cyber: The Adventures of Kaz Medina

Published by at 7:45 pm under Review Forums

Areeq is looking for reviews of his first novel, a teen-superhero meets Alex Rider meets The Matrix sort of book. Please read it and let him know what you think.  Here’s Areeq’s pitch:

Kaz Medina is thrust from his normal seventeen year old life in Manchester, into a world of danger, excitement, and the supernormal.

 

This is an original young adult novel relevant to this new millennium about a seventeen year old boy, called Kaz Medina, with an internet-based superpower. Kaz is a seemingly, normal adolescent living in the suburbs of Manchester, England, studying for his A Levels when one evening he discovers that he has absorbed a Wikipedia page into his mind.

 

With the help of his best friend Jade, he discovers and develops the extent of his power. Through the use of websites such as Facebook, Google, Wikipedia, and eBay, he is able to assimilate identities, teleport throughout the world, learn how to do almost anything, and gain access to almost everything.

 

Soon after, two men in black suits turn up at his house and Kaz’s life is turned upside down. Kaz becomes a weapon for the UK Government and embarks on his journey to becoming the most powerful teenager in the world.

7 responses so far

7 Responses to “Review for Cyber: The Adventures of Kaz Medina”

  1. Seanon 30 Jul 2011 at 6:24 am

    I read chapter one. It seemed to me that there was a lot of buildup to the revelation of Kaz’s power, but the revelation itself felt anticlimactic. He fell asleep, dreamed of chaotic Wikipedia-themed images, then woke up and banged out his paper.

    But before that, we had to get through a lot of stuff about hanging out in the park with his girl, hoping to chat online with friends, wanting to fulfill his New Year’s resolution… I get that you wanted to show us how easily-distracted Kaz is, but I think you could do that in a more engaging way. Maybe Jade could IM him, wanting to talk about all the fun she had that afternoon, making him choose between her and his schoolwork. That way, we get the backstory about their relationship and his desire to be a better student without it being simply narrated to us.

    On a more technical level, it felt odd that a modern-day, computer-savvy teen would do his homework with pen and paper, instead of typing it up and printing it out. If his weird old teacher inists that assignments be handwritten, maybe Kaz could note his annoyance with that.

    Kaz looking at himself in a photo as a device to describe him to the reader felt a bit off to me. Instead of straight narration, maybe Kaz could wish he were more attractive (smaller nose, stronger chin, better haircut, clearer skin, etc.) to be a better match for Jade. Or, if he’s egotistical, he could tell himself about how movie-star handsome he is, and how good they look together.

    Also, if Kaz is our viewpoint character, how would he know that he was snoring once he was asleep?

    It’s an interesting concept, your protagonist soun interesting, and ‘Kaz Medina’ is an awesome name. I’m looking forward to reading more.

  2. Wingson 30 Jul 2011 at 10:46 am

    Granted, describing how one looks in a mirror is slightly better than describing the character’s reflection, but not by much. Instead of a lot of description in one place, it might feel smoother to give small details throughout the piece.

    In full agreement with Sean about the buildup to an anticlimax. A longer dream sequence might help, as well as simply lengthening the scene. Maybe there are more hints that he’s “connecting” to the Internet.

    I could attempt a full-scale edit of the first few chapters, if the author would appreciate it.

    – Wings

  3. Areeqon 30 Jul 2011 at 11:07 am

    Hey you guys! Thank you so much for your responses! They’re really useful! 🙂 Thank you! And @Wings, that would be amazing!! I would really, really appreciate it!!

    Hope you’re well

    Areeq

  4. Tempoon 30 Jul 2011 at 3:17 pm

    I really like the premise! It’s sometimes hard to make technological superpowers feel like they work in a way that serves a story well aside from being designated “the hacker” or similar, but this works well.

    To me, it seems like there’s a lot of time spent exploring new, fun aspects of Kaz’s power. This is all fun, to be sure, but breaking down his power website-by-website leaves the actual plot feeling neglected at times. There was a decent hunk of real estate dedicated to discovering how to use eBay, but the only thing that’s done for him is net him a hat that’s mentioned once.

    I like the way that the first use of Google Maps introduces a new character as well as a shocking development in Kaz’s abilities.

    A bit of a factual check: I don’t think any videos by anybody but pop stars get a million views in an hour. In a day, almost anything’s possible, but I think it’d be more realistic if he’d found the video at 30,000 views or so with all the kids in town Facebooking it to all their friends.

    Overall, I like it, and I’d be interested to read more.

  5. B. Macon 30 Jul 2011 at 3:24 pm

    “I don’t think any videos by anybody but pop stars get a million views in an hour.” I’m not sure what the context here is, but I think a MAJOR news event (like an exclusive video of a presidential assassination or a terrorist attack with thousands of casualties) might command that much attention. That said, a million within an hour would be pretty amazing.

  6. Areeqon 02 Aug 2011 at 5:34 am

    Haha woohoo! I’m glad you like it 🙂 And aww okay, I may change it to 30,000 in my edits 🙂 🙂

    Thanks for your tips again! 🙂

    Areeq

  7. Areeqon 13 Aug 2011 at 4:06 pm

    Hey there, just thought I’d mention that i made a website recently at http://www.kazmedina.moonfruit.com and there’s a link back to here! 😀 😀

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