Orson by David Delaney
Narrated by Matt Godfrey
Orson Reid: college freshman, gamer, and quite possibly the legendary boogeyman of the magical world. And you thought your life was weird.
It all started the night Orson kissed his best friend, Elyse, and she kissed him back. Yes, the kiss was life-changing, but in ways Orson never could have imagined. It seems he contracted a “virus” that is making him taller, faster, and stronger. But his life doesn’t go completely off the rails until the night Elyse shows up at his house, strips out of her clothes, and shape-shifts into a giant cat – a panther, to be exact.
Now, instead of preparing for his freshman year of college, Orson is tossed head first into a world where shape-shifters, magic, and monsters are real. A world ruled by the secretive Paragon Society, a group that enforces magical law with brutal efficiency.
And if all that wasn’t enough for one guy to deal with, Orson may just be the Ollphiest, the legendary monster that even monsters fear.
This was a surprise for me. I am unable even now (I’ve read the first 4 books of the series) to pinpoint why I loved these stories so hard. I went on a Paragon Society rampage after finishing this book. If the fifth book was out I’d have continued, especially after the shock at the end of book 4. I’d say more on that later in my review of Cabal, but since it comes at the end, and it is a shock, you won’t hear the spoiler from me.
I found the story interesting. I haven’t read many shifter type stories, but here we are. Orson is a shifter and doesn’t know it. His girlfriend’s mom explains, she believes he carried the gene but it was dormant until him and his girlfriend kissed and exchanged bodily fluids. (Clears throat.) Once he was exposed to the gene, carried by his girlfriend who has been a shifter since she was little, his shifter abilities awoke.
Not only is he now a shifter, he is feared to be the Ollphiest, basically the boogy man of shifters. He is what parents use to scare their children into being good. Now other shifters are afraid of him and what he may be able to do, and are trying to stop things before they go too far. They fear he will end shifters or something, and some are taking a better safe than sorry stand.
Orson is found to be mostly indestructible, but what can get him is limited. However, he also has the handicap of not really knowing how to fight. He can be injured, but when in his animal or beast form he is harder to kill. Not until now have I realized he’s kind of one of those indestructible heroes, and maybe needs a few more weaknesses. When reading though, I did not have this thought, and the story just carried me along. Realizing this now, I don’t think really changes how I feel about this story.
Once finishing Orson, I immediately picked up the next books in the Paragon Society series. I was hooked. Now I sit here waiting for book 5 to be announced. If you love YA, I think you will like Orson, and all the other books in the series.