Book Review: “The Angel Experiement” by James Patterson

The Angel ExperimentThe Angel Experiment

by James Patterson

❤︎ ❤︎ ❤︎

Series: Maximum Ride (1)
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy, Science Fiction
Published By: Little, Brown in 2005
Format: Paperback (422 pages)

Goodreads / LibraryThing

Max, Fang, Iggy, Nudge, the Gasman, and Angel are kids who are pretty normal-except that they’re 98% human, 2% bird. They grew up in cages, living like rats, and now they’re free-but being chased by the wicked, wolf-like Erasers, who’ve kidnapped Angel. Led by Max, the “Flock” embarks on a quest to find Angel, infiltrate a secret facility to track down their parents, get revenge on an evil traitor, and try to save the world-if there’s time.


This book (and series) has a lot of hype around it, and hype can either improve or destroy my perception of a book. I tried, really tried hard to love Maximum Ride, but I didn’t. I just didn’t. It wasn’t the character – Max was well-formed and so was her flock. I think it was the plot. The plot was everywhere. And part of my frustration with the plot went along with the fact that, for one reason or another, when I read “The Angel Experiment,” I related that to the character Angel and not the obvious fact that these kids look like angels. So negative five points to me. But I still didn’t love it. However, some of the best series start off with a questionable first book, and you just have to be confident that everything will come together.

I really did like the concept, though. Genetic experiments gone wrong are my favorite type of science-fiction. I will be reading more, because there are a lot of unanswered questions, but I’m not compelled to pick up the next book immediately and read it. The questions just aren’t that pressing to me. The book is, as most of my read, geared towards a younger audience and perhaps things like the questionable maybe-it-will-happen? romance will compel readers to fly (no pun intended!) to book two. Or it may be that I’m just tired of the “omg who is she totally into?” sub plot.

There’s a lot of running in this book, which serves its purpose, but grows tiresome. Stylistically, Patterson does keep it moving, and if there’s going to be a lot of running (and flying!) around, then it really needs to be written with great flow, which Patterson definitely accomplishes.

This is great for a light, easy read. It’s enjoyable, even if I didn’t find it compelling. Max is a strong female lead who accepts help but doesn’t grovel for it. She definitely stands on her own two feet, and it’s always nice to see a protagonist like that!


Cool idea, but it’s a bit tedious at times and way over-hyped.  I liked Max a lot, though!


I bought the boxed set aaaages ago.

First Sentence


Some of My Favorite Quotes

“The funny thing about facing imminent death is that it really snaps everything else into perspective.”

“Can you giggle while racing for your life and protecting a six-year-old? I can.”

“My choices were to either give in and let them kill all of us or fight back with everything I had. I chose the second one, ’cause I’m just funny that way.”

Alternate Covers

Available At

Amazon / Barnes & Noble / IndieBound


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