Such Wicked Intent by Kenneth Oppel

13063098One of my favorite things about the first Victor Frankenstein book, This Dark Endeavor, was how its adventures and mysticism refused to be categorized as science, faith, or magic.  The events that transpired could have been the result of any of the three philosophies, and I really enjoyed wondering what was “true.”  That all changed with Such Wicked Intent.  There’s no longer any doubt that the supernatural exists, and can be tampered with.

While I’m sad at the loss of ambiguity, I’m also SO INTO the world of the dead that Oppel created.  Victor’s power-hungry god complex goes into overdrive when he discovers a way to visit his brother Konrad in a purgatory-like land and maybe even raise him from the dead.  It’s genuinely creepy, heartfelt, and inspiring.  Weird combination, but I like it!

Victor is one of the most complex characters I’ve read about in a YA book.  He is selfish and cruel, desperate for knowledge and control.  He’s also selflessly devoted to his brother, determined to help, and fond of his friends.  He has no idea whether or not he’s a good man or not, but he’s positive his twin is perfect.  This causes Victor to love and hate Konrad in equal measures, and his ability to promise “I will die for you, but I’m also gonna steal your girl” makes me love him intensely.  More complicated characters, please!

I’m really starting to love Oppel’s work.  I think I’m going to have to read everything he’s ever written.

Book Jacket

Tragedy has forced sixteen-year-old Victor Frankenstein to swear off alchemy forever.  He burns the Dark Library.  He vows he will never dabble in the dark sciences again–just as he vows he will never covet Elizabeth, his brother’s betrothed.

If only these things were not so tempting.

When he and Elizabeth discover a portal into the spirit world, they cannot resist.  Together with Victor’s twin, Konrad, and their friend Henry, they venture into a place of infinite possibilities where power and passion reign.  But as they search for the knowledge to raise the dead, they unknowingly unlock a darkness from which they may never return.

Release Date:  August 2012

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