By Cynthia Ayala
Lexa is alone on Earth, and after the Mogs invaded her hideaway and murdered her friend, Lexa is on a quest for revenge. But as a smart hacker, she knows that she can’t take them on alone. So she hunts down the ship that brought down the Garde. There’s just one problem: it’s in Dulce, New Mexico, under government lock and key. On a journey of her own, Lexa makes new allies and enemies and discovers just how big the war really is and what her part to play in it is.
The twelfth novel in the Lorien Legacies: The Lost Files novella series by Pittacus Lore, The Guard, published by HarperCollins is more of the same and nothing new as it follows Lexa on her living as a hacker and as the shadowy figure known as GUARD.
This is not a new story and instead works as a filler for The Fugitive, which followed Mark. Now in this tale readers are following Lexa and seeing what she is doing on the other end of the email and phone as GUARD. This story has already been told and it doesn’t add anymore for Lexa. Her back-story was creative, it was different and one of the stories that stands out. Now, this is just more of the same and doesn’t add anything to the story as a whole. This is really just more filler and there is nothing new about it and that makes it hard to say anything about the story at all. Everything happening in the story is something readers, specifically fans, have already read before in The Fugitive, the difference is the point of view, that’s it, and that doesn’t warrant one hundred pages of more of the same.
These novellas are supposed to function as side stories to fill in the blanks for the whole stories; they are supposed to add these tidbits in order to build the story. So far, the series has done that, but with the general Lorien Legacies ending, there are fewer and fewer spaces to fill and it seems as though this is hindering the authors’ creative ability to create more side stories, backstories, and histories. Now the novellas seem to be falling into a pit of repetition. It’s boring. There is nothing new here and it’s just rehash of Mark’s journey. It’s already said and done, readers already have that story.
Another disappointing aspect of the story is that in The Navigator readers are introduced to Lexa and how she landed on Earth with Ella and Crayton and her friend Zophie. That was a good story and her characterization was well done. She Lore leaves off with her on the run from Mogadorians, and she’s a Lorien, she’s not a Garde or a Cepan, she’s a hacker on the run covering the tracks of the Garde, but her actions, and the action in this story are very slow. It’s a slow story and there is so much time left from when she goes on the run to when the Garde really start to come out of the shadows to fight. There could have been a story there, but the writer decided to rehash and limit his creativity. Readers want to know more about her, how she survived, and how she tried to fight the Morgadorians. That would have made for an interesting story, at least something to pick up the momentum left by The Navigator.
There are two redeeming qualities in the novel: characterization and it was well written. Lexa is a very interesting character so to read about her makes it a good story. It also helps that it was, at the very least, well written. Those are the best parts of the story as a whole, because it does, at least, tell the readers a little more about Lexa and her own journey of survival in a foreign world. (★★★☆☆ | C)