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Night Runner: A Novel

Night Runner: A Novel

4.0 47
by Max Turner

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For Zack Thomson, living in the Nicholls Ward isn't so bad. After his parents died, he developed strange and severe allergies, and the mental institution was the only place where he could be properly looked after. As strange as it was, it was home. He could watch as much television as he wanted; his best friend Charlie visited him often enough; and Nurse


For Zack Thomson, living in the Nicholls Ward isn't so bad. After his parents died, he developed strange and severe allergies, and the mental institution was the only place where he could be properly looked after. As strange as it was, it was home. He could watch as much television as he wanted; his best friend Charlie visited him often enough; and Nurse Ophelia--the prettiest no-nonsense nurse ever--sometimes took him bowling. Of course, that didn't mean he had it easy. His allergies restricted his diet to strawberry smoothies, and being the only kid at the hospital could get lonely. But it never once crossed Zack's mind to leave...until the night someone crashed through the front doors and told him to run. Now he's on a race for answers--about his past, his parents, and his strange sickness--even as every step takes him closer to the darkest of truths.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“NIGHT RUNNER is a fast paced, page turner, full of surprising twists and clever turns that'll have you on the edge of your seat wondering what could possibly happen next! Max Turner had me from the very first paragraph and is definitely one to watch!” —Alyson Noel, #1 NYT Bestselling author of EVERMORE

Night Runner is a fast-paced struggle against fate that had me cheering for Zack at every turn of the page. As an ordinary boy in extraordinary circumstances, Zack Thomson must decide whether or not to succumb to the temptations of a powerful thirst for blood that lives inside him, or fight his destiny to choose good over evil. Along the way, he is helped by friends, betrayed by family, and driven by a force beyond his control. Max Turner has created an exciting addition to the vampire genre that left me guessing and hoping every step of the way.” —Brian James, author of ZOMBIE BLONDES

“Night Runner is a fast-paced adventure with a funny, winning hero who is both your average teenage guy and something far more extraordinary. Max Turner has written a gothic fantasy full of surprises and bite!
” —Katherine Marsh, Edgar-award winning author of The Night Tourist

VOYA - Walter Hogan
Zack Thomson has been living quietly in a Canadian hospital for nearly all of his fifteen years. Both of his parents died when he was quite young, and because of his allergies to sunlight and to most foods, he has remained a hospital resident. But one night, his boring routine is shattered by the violent intrusion of a wild man on a motorcycle who warns the boy that his life is in danger. Zack is soon on the run, discovering that he is a vampire and that he is being hunted by powerful enemies. Zack is an appealing narrator, with a genuine adolescent voice. His ignorance of the ways of the world after years of confinement enhances the drama and makes for occasional humor. The novel is fast paced and action filled, but it is also a bit cluttered, with several mysterious adults taking turns kidnapping Zack from one another. Like most vampire novels, this one features romance without explicit sexuality; however, the throat-biting scenes do not avoid blood and gore. The conclusion is a bit open-ended, perhaps inviting a sequel. With occasional exceptions such as M. T. Anderson's Thirsty (Candlewick, 1997) and Robin McKinley's Sunshine, (Berkley, 2003/VOYA December 2003), few successful vampire novels have resisted the lure of serialization. Although not in the class with Anderson's or McKinley's brilliant takes on vampirism, Turner's debut effort is promising. It will be hard-pressed to stand out from the overabundance of contemporary vampire fantasies in which the bloodsuckers are presented as fascinating and dangerous but not irredeemably evil. Reviewer: Walter Hogan

Product Details

St. Martin's Press
Publication date:
Night Runner Novels Series , #1
Edition description:
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.20(h) x 0.90(d)
HL580L (what's this?)
Age Range:
13 - 17 Years

Meet the Author

Max Turner is the author of the young adult vampire novel End of Days. He is a high school science teacher and lives in Ottawa with his wife and children.

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Night Runner 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 47 reviews.
harstan More than 1 year ago
For eight years Zack Thomason lived in Nicholls Ward, the home for the mentally disturbed of the Peterborough Civil Hospital; not because he is crazy, but because of a rare medical condition. Max cannot abide sunlight or food with the only nourishment his body accepts and digests is a drink made by Nurse Ophelia. He obviously sleeps during the day and is awake at night. Thus when a man drives a vehicle through the lobby, Zack hears him state that he has come to see Zack. Before the intruder is shot to death, he warns Zack that "he" is coming for him. Soon after that incident, his Uncle Max visits Zack, which is a shocker because the youngster thought he had no living relatives. Max explains to Zack that he and the lad's late father were vampire hunters; which he still is. His father died trying to kill Baron Vrolok, who survived the attack by drinking Zack's blood; that turned the child into a vampire too. The police under the Baron's control arrive to take Zack with them, but the driver of the Harley that ran through the door rescues the boy. They get separated and Zack struggles to survive on his own in the outside world. He meets with his mortal friend Charlie who visited him at the ward and with Charlie's pal and Zach's love interest Luna unaware the danger he places them in until it is too late; the Baron is coming for his "offspring". This is a coming of age urban fantasy as the protagonist adjusts to what he is, what happened to his biological father, dealing with the challenge of his blood sire, and struggling with his natural adversarial relationship with his uncle. He is a good person who must make choices some of which seem bad if he is to survive. Charlie the king of chaos and Luna are there for him as Max Turner provides an enjoyable vampire thriller that will keep his teen audience up late night running alongside of the hero. Harriet Klausner
A_Readers_Record More than 1 year ago
Action packed and nonstop from the beginning I instantly fell in love with Night Runner's main character Zack. His existence, while almost-excepted on his behalf but still sad, drew me in from the beginning. His story intrigued me and even if he didn't want to solve the mystery that surrounded his life I sure as heck did. This book while not something I would typically pick up ended up being one I loved for many reasons including Max's voice and personality. The secondary characters in this story also offer a great foundation to this story rounding it out. Romance took a backseat in this novel making it great for teen guys and girls alike.
Molly04 More than 1 year ago
I've read MANY vampire stories; some were fantastic while others were just okay. That being said, I must say that Night Runner falls under the category of "AWESOME". Zach has pretty much grown up in a mental ward and has never really gone to school; because of his ivory-tower situation, most of today's well-known people and events go right over his head. However, he is still a cool, level-headed guy that you will like immediately. His friend Charlie is just as lovable and proves to be loyal and trusting. There is a girl in the story, but she doesn't come into play until the middle of the book. That being said, she still makes a lasting impact. For a little while, the story is all about weird things happening while Zach is living in the mental ward. It then quickly moves to him running all over town with a bunch of different people. There are some twists that I didn't see coming, which made it all the more fun and the ending was fantastic! Very climactic! I cannot wait for the sequel!!
Babette Sherrier More than 1 year ago
this book was full of action, and mystery. it keep you fasinated until you read the very last word. i read-red this book over and over:) you will love it
MPEDONE More than 1 year ago
I'm just wondering if Max Turner is going to write a sequel to this book,judging by the way it ends.
carincc More than 1 year ago
*Spoiler alert* This book stuck with me because it has a different spin on the whole vampire craze. Reading the back of it, I had no idea that it was about vampires. It was a bit refreshing take on vampires. Its a short easy read.
Tigerbud More than 1 year ago
Wow, pretty interesting ride. A different view on vampires and it is from a teenage boy's point of view at that. A little bumpy at the end, but it's still a good read.
The_Shadow412 More than 1 year ago
zack lives in the Nicholls Ward, because he has a strange disease. a vampire bursts him out and the adventure begins. this book is amazing full of twists, action, scary moments, and very funny. people are not what they seem. loved it!!!
TeensReadToo More than 1 year ago
Zack Thompson is different. Instead of living in an orphanage, he lives in a mental ward and that's because he's basically allergic to everything - from specific foods to even the sun. Zack lives a nocturnal life - running, reading, and eating at night and sleeping during the day. Zack thinks nothing of his lifestyle until an old man crashed a motorcycle into the mental ward. Suddenly, Zack is thrown into an extraordinary adventure. Along for the ride is Zack's best childhood friend, Charlie, and a new, intriguing, beautiful girl named Luna. Not only will Zack figure out about his odd living arrangements and his family, but Zack will find out what he is. And it isn't human. Max Turner writes a thrilling novel that draws the reader in right from the beginning. Broken up into relatively short chapters, this novel is full of twists and turns that will never leave the reader bored.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
If you are looking for your ordinary, cliche book, this is not the book for you. The book Night Runner written by Max Turner is anything but ordinary. Night Runner is a marvelous book, filled with crazy drama and the unthinkable plot twists. I am not your regular book fanatic either, and I’m definitely not the person who is unable to put a book down because they like it so much. No way! I am just a person who occasionally likes reading, if it is a good book, and this book was indeed fantastic. I would solely recommend this book to middle schoolers or teenagers. Mainly because it is an easy read, and I thought so strongly of it, I bet people of older ages would enjoy it just as much as I did. I liked this book because it wasn’t one of those books where you have to get to the middle of the book for it to get interesting. This book was intriguing from the very beginning. I also like this book because it goes from extremely calm, descriptive writing about the scenery to a dramatic chase in just a matter of paragraphs. This book is constantly keeping you on your toes. Max Turner is a spectacular author. He puts the standards really high for other authors, and is constantly writing in a way that attracts the reader, and makes you want to read all of his other books. The book Night Runner is the first book in a series of three, and I can’t wait to read the rest of the series. In addition, this book was a Red Maple Honour book, and was shortlisted for a Sunburst award. His second book in the series, End of Days, was listed for an Ottawa award as well. This book focuses on a boy named Zack who lives in a mental ward because he is so allergic to everything he comes across.. Well, almost everything… You’ll have to read and find out. I would highly recommend reading this book because you will not regret it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I haven't read this book yet, but I have read the second one while not knowing it was a sequel. But when they kept mentioning the plot to this one in "End of Days", I thought it was really great and well thought. It matched up with "End of Days" perfectly. But I am obsessed with romance novels, and this one wasn't really deep to me. So overall, I think this book is great enough to rate 5 stars.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Once I started reading this book had a hard time putting it down
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book was AMAZING an i LLLOOOVVVEEEDD IT!!!!!!!! It has romance, fightin. It kindov stinks becaus he doesnt run away by himself he just keeps gettin caught. It was a good read i do recomend this book if u like VAMPIRES . And yes there is a second book if u wanted 2 know it is called : End of days
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Omg i love this book i remeber the firdt time i read this book i fell in live with the charaters i think that they should come out with a movie for the book like they did for twilight and all them other vampire movies
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Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I'm not one to spoil the book in the review so won't, but I will tell you if you have ever read The Chronicles of Vladimir Tod you will probably like this book. Though it didn't stick in my mind as long as Heather Brewer's books did, I still think this is a great book. .....just buy it
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
At first i thought it was really creepy but it grew on me .i thing it is one of the top books ive ever read!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Max Turner should consider making this into a series. As a one shot book though it captured my attention. I picked up this book to read on short and I was pleased with my decision. I would recommend to anyone.
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