Books by Nick Lake

SATELLITE by Nick Lake
Released: Oct. 3, 2017

"Bursts with wonder and love. (Science fiction. 13-adult)"
In this free-wheeling sci-fi adventure firmly grounded by its layered characters, Lake (Whisper to Me, 2016, etc.) explores home, family, and the idea of belonging. Read full book review >
WHISPER TO ME by Nick Lake
Released: May 3, 2016

"Part murder mystery, part love story, with plenty of drama for Lake's many fans. (Fiction. 12 & up)"
After Cassie finds a human foot washed up on a New Jersey beach, she starts to hear a voice that threatens to harm her and others unless she obeys it. Read full book review >
Released: Jan. 6, 2015

"A fine exploration of the power of story itself to heal the unconscious from scars physical and emotional. (Fiction. 13-17)"
Over a period of eight days, 17-year-old Shelby's life is forever changed. Read full book review >
Released: Oct. 15, 2013

"Readers will most likely forgive the lack of narrative control, however, as they become caught up in the layered nuances of this original story. (Fiction. 14 & up)"
A diamond in the rough that, pared down, could be a glittering gem. Read full book review >
Released: Aug. 7, 2012

"For the trilogy's fans only. (Horror. 12 & up)"
Meditating after destroying Lord Oda, vampire ninja Taro embarks on a quest to slay a dragon that has been troubling the city of Edo, home of the shogun. Read full book review >
Released: Jan. 17, 2012

"A dark journey well worth taking—engrossing, disturbing, illuminating. (author's note) (Fiction. 14 & up)"
A tale of two Haitis—one modern, one historic—deftly intertwine in a novel for teens and adults.

Readers first meet Shorty under the rubble of the recent earthquake, as he struggles to make sense of his past, present and future. Through flashbacks, they learn of his gangster life in a dangerous Port-au-Prince slum, where he searches for his twin sister, Marguerite, after they've been separated by gang violence. In his stressed state, Shorty communes with the spirit of Toussaint l'Ouverture, leader of the slave uprising that ultimately transformed Haiti into the world's first black republic. Lake adeptly alternates chapters between "Now" (post-earthquake) and "Then" (circa turn-of-the-19th century). His minimalist, poetic style reveals respect for vodou culture, as well as startling truths: "In darkness, I count my blessings like Manman taught me. One: I am alive. Two: there is no two." While the images of slavery and slum brutality are not for the faint-hearted, and Shorty's view of humanitarian workers may stir debate, readers will be inspired to learn more about Haiti's complex history. Timed for the second anniversary of the Haitian earthquake, this double-helix-of-a-story explores the nature of freedom, humanity, survival and hope. Read full book review >
Released: Dec. 7, 2010

Growing more comfortable with his ninja training, Taro embarks on a perilous mission to reunite with his mother at the fortified headquarters of a sect of warrior monks. Taro quickly learns he has fallen into a perilous trap devised by the resurrected Lord Oda and sprung by Oda's minions, Kenji Kira and Yukiko. As Taro's confidants fall away, he grasps for his last hope: a golden ball rumored to control the world. Lake brings back the slicing and the sneaking of the series opener but adds guns to the array of blades. The gore quotient is ramped up a bit, with massive battles, plenty of blood-sucking and a fleshless zombie. With more lore than necessary woven through, the pacing drags. At the same time, Taro's character development becomes crammed with back story and relationship connections that slowly overwhelm the tension. Sinister without excessive exposition, Kenji and Yukiko make fascinating, cold-blooded killers, but neither they nor ninja action can fully overcome the bloated narrative. (Horror. YA)Read full book review >
BLOOD NINJA by Nick Lake
Released: Dec. 1, 2009

Growing up in a small village with dreams of becoming a samurai, Taro never expected to be the target of a ninja attack. Mortally wounded, he is turned into a vampire by Shusaku and begins preparing for his new life, a process complicated by the revelation that Taro is a warlord's son and may be the one to end a deadly feud. Though the Japanese names may initially challenge readers, Lake's characters are well developed and natural, moving about the page and into readers' minds with grace. For all the life-shattering events that happen, however, Taro may seem somewhat too resilient to be true. Taro and Shusaku's discussions over honor and integrity are well constructed, even though the dialogue assumes a didactic tone. The abundance of swords, sneaking and slicing helps propel readers along despite the narrative's occasional slow moments. The dark cliffhanger leaves room for sequels, which will be appreciated by those vampire fans not inclined to follow more romantic bloodsuckers. (Horror. YA) Read full book review >