I bought this book mostly out of curiosity to see how someone might handle martial arts themes in a young adult novel. It turned out to be an impressive beginning to what is apparently to be a series. Although written to be age appropriate—and generally following the viewpoint of its teenaged heroine—the book could almost pass for a contemporary adult thriller. As a result, you never feel that the author is writing down to his audience. This was evident in other ways as well: I especially appreciated the way the author was able to introduce pretty sophisticated reflections on philosophical aspects of the martial arts into the story in an unobtrusive way. Combine that with his professional prose and plotting (and his real skill with action scenes), and you have a book that will both entertain and challenge a young reader.