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The Virals Series Will Have You Howling

The Virals series by Kathy and Brendan Reichs will have you laughing while your on the edge of your seat.

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“The whole thing started with a dog tag. Well, a monkey with a dog tag. Take your pick”

Imagine you’re on a walk with your three best friends on an island owned for animal research, everyone’s having a good time and watching the rhesus monkeys as they swing in the trees. Even though you know the island well you manage to get off the path and become lost. Your friends are goofing off while you watch a particular monkey, it was an older one with patches of fur missing a notch out of one ear and Y-7 tattooed on its chest. It seemed to be on edge about something and clenching something in its hand. The object looks small and it looks like there’s just a hint of a metallic shine.

Y-7 starts throwing objects at you and your friends but does not throw the metallic object. One of your friends gets the bright idea to throw something back at the monkey but this only angers Y-7 more.Y-7 finally throws the object it just barley misses your head. While your two other friends yell at the third for angering the monkey you go and see what the object was. It was a thin, flat piece of rusted and dirty mettle that only weighed about an ounce and had one tiny puncture in the end.

There are two things you will find out about this object: 1.Its a dog tag from someone who went missing long ago, and 2.It will change your life forever. This is the basic starting point for the Virals series by Kathy and Brendan Reichs

The plot Is the first reason why I loved this series. Tori, Ben, Hi, and Shelton were once normal kids, going to school and goofing around. Until one day where they found an old dog tag, a dog tag that would change their life. When they found this piece of history it was all crusted and unreadable so they decided to use a lab from where their parents worked. Since no one would approve of four teens using multimillion dollar equipment they had to sneak in. When they found some of the scientists working late they went to a no longer used building and started decoding the tag. The tag had once belonged to L.Heaton who served and died in Vietnam and his tags was sent to his daughter, Kathleen Heaton. But why would this dog tag be found on an island unknown to most people?

The group of friends couldn’t wonder about it too long because they heard a bark from another room. The soon went on a search for this mysterious noise and find a vault like door. After figuring out the passcode they enter the mysterious room and find one of the wolf dog pups that also lives on this island. Tori had affectionately named this particular wolf dog Cooper after finding him in an old Cooper Peanuts storage hold. Cooper had wires and tubes connected to him and it didn’t take long for them to figure he had been tested on. They soon had a plan to get the poor pup out of the lab and after a very stressful escape they got the pup to their secret hideout.

But what they don’t know is what disease the dog was carrying can be transferred to humans. The result was that it changed their DNA,making them inhuman. With this change there senses were heightened but only during certain times. With this newfound secret comes newfound problems, as in if this will slowly destroy them and who would want this power to turn it into a weapon.As the crew follows along on there adventure to keep this a secret they find buried treasure, catch a serial killer, survive a hurricane, and have there worst fears realized; being captured.

The books amazing characters are another reason why this series is my favorite. There are five main characters in the books,Tori Brennan, Ben Blue, Hi Stolowitski, Shelton Devers ,and Chance Claybourne. Although the last one isn’t in it as much but is a driving force in the series, often as the villain. These characters will make you love them, hate them, and leave you on the edge of your seat.

The main protagonist is Tori Brennan. Tori is described as a fourteen year old tall slender girl with wild red hair and stunning green eyes. Tori is the youngest and only girl of the group but has taken charge as the leader of the Virals. About Six months previous of the first book, Tori’s mother had died from a drunk driving accident and had to go live with her long lost father on the coast of South Carolina. Her father is a marine biologist and research professor at the institute on Loggerhead island. During this experience she has learned not only about her father but her great aunt Temperance Brennan,who is a world famous forensic anthropologist. So its not hard to believe that Tori has this amazing ability to solve crime.

The next up on the Virals roster is Ben Blue. Ben certainly isn’t the ray of sunshine in the group. He is often described as a dark person with his black shoulder length hair, dark brown eyes and copper skin. His signature look is a black t-shirt with dark blue jeans. Ben is the only sixteen year old in the group at the start of the first book, instead of just going and buying a car like a normal person he decided to put all of his savings into an old sixteen foot Boston Whaler runabout which he names Sewee. Ben named his prized possession after the fact that he’s part Sewee Indian, which he never proves but no one’s about to tell him otherwise. Ben’s father operates the boat service connecting Morris to Loggerhead Island and the ferry running between Morris and Charleston.

The comedic relief of this crew is no other than Hiram Stolowitski more commonly known as Hi. Hi usually is the one to crack jokes and refers to himself as “The King of Sarcasm”. Along with his funny and easy going personality Hi has a very interesting sense of style. Hi usually has a Hawaiian shirt with colorful board shorts which never really match. Even at school he has found a way around the dress code so he can look different. Hi wears his jacket inside out just to prove his point. Hi’s father is the lab technician on Loggerhead and his mother is the over worrying, doting type who’s sporadic bursts of piety often lead to a twenty minute drive to temple.

Shelton Devers is the tech guy of the group. His abilities go from picking locks to accidentally hacking into government files.Shelton’s father is the IT specialist and his mother’s a veterinary technician. Shelton’s father is African American and his mother is Japanese and Shelton carries traits from both ethnicities, having dark skin but his mother’s features.

Now the character we could possibly hate the most is no other than Chance Claybourne. Chance is known for his supermodel good looks, his perfect black hair and dark brown eyes make every girl at school swoon. Once he hit eighteen he became the most powerful man in Charleston, since he inherited everything his father owned. Chance is the designated villain from the first book and is often the one behind everything, well at least that’s what he makes you think. He often uses his newfound resources to keep tabs on the virals.

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The Virals Series Will Have You Howling