I Am Number Four
I Am Number Four

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Series: Lorien Legacies Vol. 1   

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Annotation: A fifteen-year-old refugee from the planet Lorien, hidden on Earth to escape his people's enemies, finds himself distracted by the lure of romance and "normal" friendships.
Catalog Number: #46941
Format: Perma-Bound Edition
All Formats: Search
Publisher: HarperCollins
Copyright Date: 2010
Edition Date: 2010
Pages: 440 pages
Availability: Available
ISBN: Publisher: 0-06-196957-5 Perma-Bound: 0-605-47663-2
ISBN 13: Publisher: 978-0-06-196957-7 Perma-Bound: 978-0-605-47663-9
Dewey: Fic
LCCN: 2010009395
Dimensions: 21 cm.
Language: English
ALA Booklist
Is Pittacus Lore a pseudonym? An introduction suggests that Lore is 10,000 years old and hails from the planet Lorien, so I'm going with yes. This fun bit of business is indicative of the book's commitment to its premise: 10 years ago, nine children fled war-ravaged Lorien and landed on Earth along with their adult teachers. As they mature, each child develops powers called Legacies, which help them fight the evil Mogadarians. The Nine can only be killed in order d Number Three just bit it. That leaves Number Four: John Smith. At least, that's his latest alias, as he and his guardian, Henri, flee to a new town for the umpteenth time. There John encounters bullies, falls in love, and begins to, you know, move things with his mind. Though the finale bogs down in a cluttered monster battle, everything else is terrifically propulsive. Meanwhile, the backstory (Loriens are given credit for everything from Greek gods to the Loch Ness Monster) deserves the next story that Lore is surely concocting in his/her/its spacecraft right now.
Horn Book
A human-looking alien named Number Four lands in Paradise, Ohio. He assumes the identity of John Smith, a high school sophomore, and starts to develop his Legacies (special powers). This plot-driven novel moves at an intense pace while still focusing on character growth. After a chaotic final battle, the open ending leaves ample room for future exploration.
Kirkus Reviews
If it were a Golden Age comic, this tale of ridiculous science, space dogs and humanoid aliens with flashlights in their hands might not be bad. Alas... Number Four is a fugitive from the planet Lorien, which is sloppily described as both "hundreds of lightyears away" and "billions of miles away." Along with eight other children and their caretakers, Number Four escaped from the Mogadorian invasion of Lorien ten years ago. Now the nine children are scattered on Earth, hiding. Luckily and fairly nonsensically, the planet's Elders cast a charm on them so they could only be killed in numerical order, but children one through three are dead, and Number Four is next. Too bad he's finally gained a friend and a girlfriend and doesn't want to run. At least his newly developing alien powers means there will be screen-ready combat and explosions. Perhaps most idiotic, "author" Pittacus Lore is a character in this fiction—but the first-person narrator is someone else entirely. Maybe this is a natural extension of lightly hidden actual author James Frey's drive to fictionalize his life, but literature it ain't. (Science fiction. 11-13)
Publishers Weekly
In this action-packed but formulaic novel, first in the Lorien Legacies series, John Smith appears to be a normal American teenager, living in Ohio with his father, attending high school, and falling for a local girl. But he's really something much cooler: an alien from the planet Lorien, and one of the last survivors of a race that was nearly wiped out by its enemies. And now the evil Mogadorians have traveled to Earth looking for survivors, with an eye toward wiping out this planet as well. John is destined to fight them, but will his superpowers manifest before it's too late? Lore (a Loric elder in the book, and a pseudonym for writer James Frey and a coauthor) provides a fast-moving plot and some genuinely creepy bad guys, though the basic premise is clich%C3%A9d and the science won't pass muster with diehard SF fans. However, a Michael Bay%E2%80%93produced movie is planned for 2011, and for those looking for an undemanding, popcorn-ready read, this ""guy%E2%80%94okay, alien%E2%80%94gets the girl and saves the world"" adventure should do the trick. Ages 14%E2%80%93up. (Aug.)
School Library Journal
Gr 7 Up&12; Despite the amazing powers that many of the people of Lorien possess, the planet was defeated and its natural resources looted by Mogadorians in a matter of days. Only nine children escaped with their guardians to Earth, where they planned to hide until they developed their powers in order to defeat their enemies and revive Lorien. The Mogadorians hunt the Nine and have already killed three of them. And that's just the backstory. When Number Four, bearing the name "John Smith," moves to Paradise, OH, he runs afoul of the school bully, falls for the most beautiful girl in town, and befriends the local alien conspiracy nerd in short order. There is plenty of great action, but the dialogue is average, as is the character development. With its interesting premises and a fast-pace telling, the story will grab readers who are willing to suspend quite a bit of disbelief. Others, who like their science fiction with a bit more science and internal logic, will have to search elsewhere.&12; Eric Norton, McMillan Memorial Library, Wisconsin Rapids, WI
Voice of Youth Advocates
“John Smith” is actually Number Four, one of nine children of a dying alien race (Loric) on the run from another, more powerful alien race. John and his guardian, Henri, hide out in Paradise , Ohio, where John finds love with a local girl and begins to come into his alien powers. In a clever twist, to protect the children from the villainous Mogadorians, the Loric cast a protective spell: the children can only be killed in order of their numbers, so long as they are kept separated. Unfortunately, the first three have already been murdered, which John sees in his dreams and feels in the form of a scar on his right ankle. Henri and John try to live below the radar, but with John occasionally glowing and practically invulnerable to fire, plus the Mogadorians closing in, it may not be long before they’re back on the run. This lively new spin on Superman and space invaders feels uniquely clever for the majority of the story, captivating readers with mystery and romance alike. So committed is the author to the cause, he eschews the typical biography in favor of a pseudonym claiming to be the last ruling elder of the dying planet Lorien. (Internet searches suggest Lore is actually James Frey of A Million Easy Pieces [Anchor/Doubleday, 2005] notoriety.) So it is disappointing the story turns into a routine battle scene in the final chapters, when we’ve been built up to expect something greater than an everyday sci-fi thriller.—Matthew Weaver.
Word Count: 100,385
Reading Level: 4.4
Interest Level: 7-12
Accelerated Reader: reading level: 4.4 / points: 14.0 / quiz: 139745 / grade: Middle Grades+
Reading Counts!: reading level:2.3 / points:23.0 / quiz:Q52425
Lexile: 700L

The first book of the #1 New York Times bestselling series and the inspiration for the hit movie from Dreamworks!

John Smith seems like an ordinary teenager, living a normal life with his guardian Henri in Paradise, Ohio. But for John, keeping a low profile is essential, because he is not an ordinary teenager. He’s an alien from the planet Lorien, and he’s on the run. A group of evil aliens from the planet Mogadore, who destroyed his world, are hunting anyone who escaped.

Nine Loric children were sent to Earth to live in hiding until they grew up and developed their Legacies, powers that would help them fight back—and help them save us. Three of them are now dead. John is Number Four, and he knows he’s next….

Michael Bay, director of Transformers, raved: “Number Four is a hero for this generation.” This epic story is perfect for fans of action-packed science fiction like The 5th Wave series by Rick Yancey, The Maze Runner series by James Dashner, and Orson Scott Card’s Ender’s Game.

The battle for Earth’s survival wages on. Read all of the books: #2: The Power of Six, #3: The Rise of Nine, #4: The Fall of Five, #5: The Revenge of Seven, #6: The Fate of Ten, and #7: United as One.

Don’t miss the first book in the brand-new I Am Number Four spin-off series: Generation One.

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